Some Tips for Making the Most of Shabbat:
IMAGINE what you think Shabbat should be. Traditional observance for 25 hours? Or a more liberal approach? Let your imagining be very specific. Then, even if this is not something you could do every week, make that imagined Shabbat happen, just once. See how it feels, tastes, smells.
STUDY Shabbat. The observance of Shabbat is really an art that merits a bit of study. If you haven’t read Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel’s Shabbat, you’re in for a treat. If some other book appeals to you, give it a go! Survey other Jews you trust: how do they observe Shabbat?
SHARE your desire for a more meaningful Shabbat with your partner or spouse. Maybe they are wishing for more, too!
DECIDE ahead of time what you are going to do or not do on Shabbat. Make a plan and commit to it for one week. Shabbat will take place whether you “show up” for it or not. Torah tells us to “keep Shabbat” and “remember Shabbat” – both verbs suggest that we take action towards Shabbat, not simply let it roll over us.
EXPERIMENT if you are not satisfied with the way you currently experience Shabbat. If you don’t usually attend synagogue, give it a try. If you never turn off your smartphone, turn it off! If you find that traditional observance leaves you grumpy, take a good hard look at what you are doing and why. Maybe it’s time for a change.