Four Things to do when You're in the Middle of a Spiritual Awakening

In my last post, I talked about three of the many signs that you’re having a spiritual awakening. So what do you do when you're in the middle of one? Like I said, spiritual awakenings can be messy business. 

Here are 4 things to do when you're in it: 

Zoom out & Notice.

Take a step back and notice what and who is leaving your life and what and who is coming in, without trying to change or judge it. Breathe in and out. This is a powerful act of mindfulness. 

Ground & Play.

Grounding is a soothing balm during a spiritual awakening, particularly if it’s the kind that kicks your ass. Walk. Do yoga. Ride your bike. Turn up the music and dance around your house. Spiritual awakenings are hard work and your body is having its own experience of it. Give it an opportunity to move and play.  P.S. — This’ll also get you out of your head if you find yourself in there more than you like.

Retreat.

Get away from it all. If you can go for a long stretch, do it. There are places designed for such things, like Kripalu, where I parked myself for a few winters. If that doesn’t ring your bell, take yourself to a place you’ve always wanted to go. If you don’t have time or cash to go away, retreat once per week. Turn off your phone. Don’t answer the door. Be quiet. 

Ask for Help.

Ask the Universe. Ask your guides. Ask your ancestors. You don't have to know who your guides or ancestors are. Ask it aloud in whatever way feels right for you ... for your highest good and your highest healed self. 

Three Signs that you're Having a Spiritual Awakening

You feel down.

You feel like your life is a mess and nothing makes sense anymore.

You feel lonely and that the people around you don't get it.

 It may not be depression. You might be undergoing a spiritual awakening.

I've witnessed and helped many people go through a spiritual awakening over the years -- both in my work and my personal life. They are messy. They make you feel crazy. They make you feel like you're in the middle of a tsunami and hanging on for dear life.

As difficult as it is to undergo such a transformation, It's all part of being human and waking up.

The list is long, but here are just 3 things I've noticed that indicate you're on the verge of a spiritual awakening: 

1. The shit hits the fan. 

You get fired. Your lover leaves you. You’re diagnosed with cancer.  These are some of the heavy-duty things that suddenly bring your spiritual life into sharp focus. They shake up the very core of who you think you are, what’s important and why you're here on the planet. 

You might see this as life handing you a raw deal. You may have a strong impulse to turn your back on it. Reject it. Stick your fingers in your ears and start singing la-la-la-la-la.

These are all perfectly reasonable. I’ve done them myself.

What I’ve noticed, however, is that shit hittin' the fan is a usually a course correction along your spiritual journey. Think of it as a GPS re-calculating your route after you’ve veered off the map.

2. You want more.

You may have no clue what's going on or why, but you look around and want more. Less stuff, more meaning. Less holding back, more arms-wide-open vulnerability. Less superficial relationships, more true connecting. No longer satisfied with the usual offerings, your soul is hungry and needs to be fed. So you go looking (and you usually find it). 

3. A teacher appears.

You've probably heard the saying:  "When the student is ready, the teacher appears."

The teacher can be someone who you bump into on the check-out line at the market. It can be an experience you keep having. It can be a book that finds its way to you.

I had a book fall into my hands that was one of those books.

It was 1996, and I was spending my first winter volunteering and living at Kripalu Yoga Center. I was in chronic pain from my previous job as a reporter at a newspaper. I had no direction or money. I heard about Kripalu and that you could live there in exchange for working. So I went. I cleaned toilets and showers. I used my skills to help edit newsletters. I pitched in wherever I was needed. One night, I was wandering alone through the library on the top floor. A book literally fell out of the stacks and into my hands. It was A Path with Heart by Jack Kornfeld. It sang to my heart and help me start healing all the pain in there. Since then, I read it every few years. It still teaches me things. 

Tell me what your experience has been like. 

The Sensitive Soul's Guide to Getting through the Holidays

Each year around this time, I write about how to deal with the holidays when you are sensitive. I’m looking at you my dear empaths, introverts and HSPs. 

We pick up on so much more than the average human. We pick up people's energy, the intensity of smells, the vibe of homes we're in ... to name a few.

Thanks to the holidays, you may find yourself with people and in places that don’t always jive with the way you move through the world.

Here are few ideas to help you get through it:

 

  1. Protect your energy field. I feel nauseous when I forget to do this and happen to be around energy-sucking people. Don’t know how to protect it? Click here. 
  2. Say yes and say no to social gatherings. Cherry-pick ones that make you feel good about yourself. Decline the ones that don’t. If there are that don’t but you feel you have to go, see #3.
  3. Use one of the principles of ergonomics. Make the holidays adapt to you, rather than you trying to adapt to it. Does going to a 4-hour party gives you hives? Show up for an hour and then say goodbye. Don’t want to be in the mall buying gifts because you get a migraine? Shop local and shop small (see below for 2 ideas on shopping small with me). 
  4. Plan alone time. All-day in your PJs while reading books or hosting your own movie marathon is right up your alley, my dear. I’ll be doing that for a few days with Wes Anderson. 
  5. Go for a walk in nature at least once a week.
  6. Connect with your body and breathe deeply. Repeat often.