Thursday, September 1, 2011

Spiritual Awakening Timeline: Managing Your Shifts

I hope to not get too many expectations set up with the title of this blog. I'm not going to tell you how long your awakening will last. Only you can do that. I am also not saying that you can control your shifts when I use the term "managing." Instead, what I'm speaking to is coming into awareness around how you shift and your specific needs through each wave. In bringing awareness to these shifts, you begin to understand your shifts and make space appropriately for the work it takes to fully embody these energetic blasts, i.e. how to manage it.

With all that said, I like to carve up these shifts into 3 main categories:

  1. The energetic wave and opening
  2. Healing & integration
  3. Recuperation

The Wave Comes and Overturns the Boat
For me, awakening energy comes in waves. As I've gotten more used to how they feel, I have less resistance to them. They merge into me and restructure me in fundamental ways that I can't explain in a blog post. If you've ever had this awakening energy move through you, you know what I'm talking about. But for most of us, this wave is so powerful and we have so much resistance that it typically overturns the boat. We feel completely overwhelmed. We can't deal with it or know how to help ourselves. So we get submerged and struggle furiously to try to get back above the surface water.

Take for example that you are actually on a boat. Trying to escape the wave is impossible, but people try to do it. They expend tons of energy trying to outrun it, exhausting themselves with work, relationships, and other things. The only way to really deal with it is to go straight into it (okay, so I'm not a nautical person; just roll with this). That's the quickest way to get through something. In essence, you are no longer exerting energy running from it. And you certainly aren't trying to stop the wave. How could you? Even then, a lot of us try to stop it and get our boats turned upside down and crashed against reefs. At this point, I'll be getting a very tearful phone call or upset email from someone who has just wrecked. :) Which is okay, and certainly not all tears are bad tears. But where there is resistance in us to these shifts, the pain will be unbearable.

Letting Go Into the Energy Wave
The only way to get through this awakening is by letting go. There are lots of spiritual tools to help you, but ultimately they all amount to the same thing--helping you to let go. Whatever you need to help you to let go, you should look into it. If chanting helps you to clear your voice to let go of the resistance to saying what you feel, then chant. If journaling helps you to let go of the issues with your mother, then journal. But just remember that those tools are all leading you towards the same thing: total acceptance and letting go.

Because letting go is your fast route through awakening. It's the only way really. All else will only increase the suffering. It's not the awakening that's making you suffer; it's you. You're the problem. This is a discovery that we all come to. When we can look at the person in the mirror and identify the problem, we've come a long way. As we do that, it becomes a little easier to let go and allow this change without fighting it.

Healing and Integration: Still More Energy Required
However, so much can be moving through us and we are so new to trying to contain and cultivate any of this that outside help can be essential. So find your outside support. This is an okay thing to do. It isn't a loss of face, and it certainly doesn't mean that you're weak. Although in many ways, you'll feel weakened. You may feel helpless as all this energy moves through, and then it unlocks a lot of old issues stuck inside. Those issues have to heal before you can fully integrate this new level of energy and awareness. You're going to keep going through these cycles for awhile. Most of us don't usually take one hit and are done for life. At it's deepest truth, these cycles have been going on our whole lives, but now, you're actually sensitive to them. Certainly, some are bigger than others. Perhaps, these energy cycles are particularly big because we've repressed them for so long and built up a huge amount of energy that should have come a little at a time all along. Who knows for sure?

So, all the energy churns up the bottom of the seabed in you. All those gnarly things down there are brought to the surface, and you have to face them. As you clear that part of you, you can integrate more of the energy. It's like making more space in your house (I know, I'm jumping metaphors. I haven't done enough boating in my life to stick with the other one ;). The more crap you get out of your cellar; the more cool new space you have in your home. It makes it much less cluttered, and you can hold so much more of this new awareness that is your true you.

Recuperation
With all of this said, you will need time to recuperate after those first two segments have passed. This can be frustrating because the first two stages could easily have incapacitated for you an extended period of time. This makes working in the 9-5 world pretty much impossible. For those of you in really intense shifts, you probably aren't working at all. It takes all you have to work through these shifts. You may have shifts that are coming in quick succession. Others of you may have shifts spaced by weeks, months, or years. I encourage you to bring more awareness to them to get a sense of how long each segment lasts.
  • How long does a wave go for?
  • How long do you need to heal and integrate the wave?
  • How long does it take to recuperate so that you can interact from this new space?

I know that you probably haven't segmented these things before, and it can be hard to get any sense of that while in the midst of the maelstrom. But as I often suggest, having a journal to chart yourself can be really helpful. It will help you to understand yourself and what your specific needs are. No one else can ever really tell you what they are--although there are plenty of intuitives, teachers, et al who can provide assistance. But at the center of this thing is you. And you do know what you need and what's going on. In building tools for yourself, you may clear out some of the sense of helplessness that most people feel--because well, you really are at the whims of a very powerful force. Ironically, that force really is just a lot of you.

Timetables for Spiritual Awakening Shifts
Of course, each shift has a different timeline. Some are small shifts that you hardly notice. They come and go in a day. Others last several years. A lot of it depends on you: what do you have to heal, how much resistance do you have, what your life purpose is, and countless other factors that I can't begin to write out. It's different for each person, but we all can get through this. We all are equipped with all the right tools to manage our own processes. That's the beauty of it, and if anything, I would encourage you to have a little faith in yourself as well as your process. You're going to be okay.

In the meantime, learn to let go. Learn to build space to have your shifts. That's the quickest way if you're concerned about how long any of this will take. As you go, you realize how silly time is. Everything is happening as it should for you. You can relax. You can let go a little deeper. Let a little more of your own life in. That's the only way to manage this process. To manage it is to give up the desire to control it or change your experience of it. Awakening stirs up a lot of anger, sadness, fear, desire, and other stuff that we've all tried to avoid. Now, it's time to watch those feelings come up, and let them go. Don't react to them. They're old news. They're old stories, and you're getting ready to write a brand new story for you. You're getting ready to fully be the true you.
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