Here’s the truth: when you get started on your spiritual journey, there are going to be lots of bumps on the road. In this post, I want to share with you my experiences with the reality of the spiritual journey. I’ll also share my top 5 tips that will help you get up when you stumble on your spiritual path.
This post is a love letter to anyone embracing and working on their spirituality. However, I’m writing this from the perspective of someone who’s been dealing with depression for over a decade. Please take from this post whatever is most useful to you and disregard the rest.
When you’re in the beginning steps of your spiritual journey, sometimes it feels like a high. You can enjoy glorious weeks of exploring your spirituality and cultivating this new, better, shinier version of yourself.
You’re enjoying your meditation sessions, discovering deep truths about yourself while journaling, having fun with the spiritual practices that speak to you and make you feel ease and light. You’re engaging in activities that make you feel good, joyful, and raise your vibration to a higher level.
You can’t even remember the last time you felt this good, this energized, inspired, and open.
And then it happens.
You’ve been doing so good, and then you stumble.
Your ego pops by just to say a quick hello.
And you fall hard.
You start to doubt your journey.
Why haven’t you experienced anything super spiritual yet?
Why aren’t you receiving the signs you’ve asked for? How come the Universe hasn’t shown you that you’re on the right path? Where’s the confirmation, support, and guidance you’ve been looking for and praying for?
You start to feel like you’re completely abandoned. Maybe you’re not actually supposed to be doing this. Maybe this isn’t the path you’re supposed to be on. Maybe no sign is actually a sign from the Universe that you have no fucking idea what you’re doing, this isn’t right for you, and you should just give up.
It can get pretty dark real fast. Especially if you’re someone who is familiar with dark tendencies and suicidal idealization. If you’ve dealt with depression or other mental illness, you’re probably pretty familiar with that place.
And even if you don’t share my particular history of depression and anxiety…
The reality of your spiritual journey is that you will have days of darkness.
Fear. Uncertainty. Aloneness. Feeling lost.
It’s all part of the journey.
The reality of the spiritual journey.
A couple of days ago, I woke up.
I was feeling inexplicably sad, hopeless, in a very familiar state of numbness. Then I made the mistake of glimpsing myself in the mirror and discovered that I was breaking out all over the place.
That gave me the first start into uncontrollable, ugly sobbing. Always a fun time to be had, first thing in the morning.
Then the mail man delivered an unexpected bill, which meant fasting for a couple weeks. No biggie. I’ll just cry away the hunger.
With all this senseless crying and dehydration I was starting to resemble a delightful mix of something out of a horror movie and a week old tomato.
I spent most of the day in bed, took a nap, cried some more, writhed around in that agonizing headache you get after a day of crying out 94% of your body’s water reserves.
I felt so low and had absolutely no energy to do anything. I couldn’t find the strength to take care of my body and exercise. I couldn’t focus enough to write or work on my blog and business.
Naturally, you start feeling even worse about yourself when you can’t get shit done that you really want to get done. You start feeling like a failure, like you’re never getting anywhere, this is it and it’s never going to get better.
Oh, but then it gets even worse.
Cause you start blaming yourself for these feelings.
You’re lowering your vibration! Terrible things are going to happen to you now that you’ve spent the whole day crying! You’re never getting out of this and nothing good will manifest in your life cause Universe doesn’t like cry baby losers!
It’s an incredibly strong downward spiral that can suck you down into terrifying depths of misery.
Be prepared, my friend. Constant vigilance.
So how do you deal with these days of darkness?
The days when it feels like it’s not going to work out and there’s no point to this whole thing at all. You’ll never build the spiritual relationship that you so desire. You won’t receive the signs, guidance, and encouragement.
Why can’t you have the spiritual relationship that other people have so effortlessly? Why can’t you feel that connection? Why can’t you see or feel anything meaningful when you meditate? Why can’t you experience the joy and inner peace and calm you’re looking for?
We all stumble on our spiritual path. These moments of darkness and lack of faith is something we all face eventually.
Here are my 5 steps to conquer your uncertainty, pull yourself out of the funk, and get back to your spiritual path with grace and ease.
1. Accept that this is a shitty day.
Plain and simple. It’s just a shitty day! You’ve had those before and you’ll have them again.
You’ve gotten past them before and you will do so now.
Please keep in mind that the Universe is not testing you.
Do you really want to believe in this cruel energy that gets her kicks out of making you feel miserable? Do you choose to think that all your shitty days and experiences are some sort of a twisted joke for no other reason than ‘testing’ you? Testing you for what?
It’s your goddamn birthright to feel happy, joyful and fulfilled every day out of your life. There are no prerequisite requirements. This is your divine destiny and you don’t have to jump through burning hoops to claim your happiness.
Your spiritual journey is an exhausting emotional process that you’re going through.
You’ve been awakened. You’re entire reality is shifting. You’re becoming a new version of yourself.
Of course things are going to rise up from deep inside you. Of course there will be shifts. Of course you’ll experience a rollercoaster of emotions, both positive and negative.
One day, you’re sitting in meditation for an easy hour and a half and it feels like only a couple minutes have passed. Oh my god, I’m such an amazing fucking mediator. So zen, so spiritual.
Or you have an amazing journaling session where things things are just pouring out of you. You’re in this flurry of inspiration and flow and ease and you can’t stop writing.
And then you have the complete polar opposite experiences when you feel really shitty, low, and hopeless. You feel like you’re slipping back to where you came from, the dark state of existence you barely escaped from with your life intact the first time.
Be prepared that there are going to be polar experiences on your path.
2. Give yourself permission to feel it all.
Allow yourself to feel all your emotions.
Instead of falling victim to your fears and thinking that…
- you’re going to lower your vibration and
- more negative feelings and experiences are going to flow your way because of this one day of feeling and being human…
Think of it as a process of healing.
You have to get these feelings out of you. You can’t just hold onto them and force them in some dark locked space inside your soul. That’s how serial killers are made.
Embrace your humanness. Allow yourself, lovingly, to simply have a shitty day.
Give yourself permission to have this one day.
You can stay in bed, feel all your emotions and get it out of your system in whatever way that works for you. Process your feelings and let it go. Cry your eyes out, take a nap, go punch something, journal it out.
And if all you can do is stay in bed, cry, nap, not do anything, then that’s okay too.
You are in the process of healing. It’s the most important part of your spiritual journey.
And your process is whatever you need it to be. You make the rules.
Nobody said that this is going to be easy here! It’s not a journey full of magic and unicorns, and if someone did tell you that, then I’m sorry that I have to be the one to set the record straight.
The reality of this spiritual journey is that it’s not always going to be easy.
3. Get back to the practice.
There are tons of spiritual practices and it’s up to you to choose what works for you. That’s the fun part of this whole spirituality thing!
Get back to the practice that you enjoy the most — the practice that fills you with joy.
It could be going to a yoga class or for a small walk so you can be in touch with nature.
You could journal for a bit.
You could simply have a hot shower and get to bed early to read.
Your favorite practice could be sipping your morning coffee outside, enjoying fresh air, and just saying out loud the three things you’re grateful for at this moment.
You could help someone, donate your energy (whether that’s time or money or something else) to a cause that’s important to you, or go out and get yourself a new plant and take care of it.
Small things I enjoy doing are meditation, going for a small walk, or having a dirty dance party and shaking all the negative bullshit out of my body and renewing my energy.
All these things are spiritual practices if you decide that they are.
So when you get up after your One Shitty Day, pick one thing.
Go do it. Let yourself step back into the practice with ease.
Realign yourself to stay on this path and keep fucking going.
4. Re-evaluate your fears.
Remember how I talked about my fears earlier? How sometimes I feel like I’m completely abandoned by the Universe. And I still haven’t received a sign that I’m on the right path in my life. I also haven’t experienced many surprises or miracles so far… More like the opposite.
Sometimes, this all makes me hide in my cozy depression cave for a day or two.
And when I get back out of it, I re-evaluate.
Is the stumbling on this rocky path really a sign that I should give up?
Or are these experiences gifted to me so I can teach other spiritually curious women how hard this journey sometimes is? So I can tell you that it’s okay, you are on the right path, and you’re doing amazing?
I choose to believe it’s the latter. I choose to believe that everything I’m experiencing, no matter how hard it is sometimes, will prepare me for an incredible life full of magic. It’ll make me a better mentor and guide and teacher and friend and daughter and partner.
This also applies to your desires, so let’s get into it.
5. Re-affirm your faith in your desires.
You don’t need some magical sign to believe fully in your soul’s deepest desires.
When you have a powerful desire in your heart that’s been there for maybe a decade or two or more…
That’s sign enough that you are meant to go for it.
I know that there’s something in your soul that you know you are meant to be, do, or have. I know it, and you know it.
You weren’t given that desire as some sort of cruel joke! Like hehehe, here’s this thing you really want but surprise, you’re never going to get it.
When you have these deep desires, you can be sure that they were given to you on purpose. The Universe gave you your desire because you were meant to have it. And you are going to have it.
Everything you’re experiencing right now is leading you to your desired reality. It’s all going to happen in divine, beautiful, perfect timing. You just have to trust in that.
Hold onto that faith and keep it close to your heart. Feel how beautiful and precious that desire is. Know that it’s going to happen in perfect divine timing and that you don’t have to worry about the how and when. The Universe does that part for you, so you’re cool.
Trust that it’s going to be yours and there’s no other way. It was given to you, nobody else. You are meant to have this, and be this, and do this.
Accept that every now and then you’re going to take little detours into fear.
Prepare yourself. Have that one small thing that you know is going to help you get back on the path towards love. Keep it in your back pocket at all times.
When you stumble, let yourself have one day of feeling into your fears and doubts. The next day, get back to your spiritual practice.
Forgive yourself. Remember that this is all part of the natural process of growth and healing.
Get back to the practice for you. Ultimately, your spiritual practice is for you. You’re getting physical, mental and emotional benefits from the practices you’ve chosen. You’re not doing them just for any special BFF connection with the Universe. You practice so that you feel happier and healthier. So you have clarity and inner peace and calm in your life.
Lovingly push yourself to move forward on your spiritual journey. Lift yourself up when you fall down.
Surround yourself with beautiful, positive people. Get outside and spend time in nature.
Do things that bring you joy.
Get to know yourself and learn to be gentle with the new version of you that you’re in the process of unearthing and bringing to blossom.
Kindly, kindly lead yourself towards the most beautiful version of you that’s ever existed.
She’s waiting for you right around the corner.
Hi, I’m Vivi! I’m a transformation mentor, writer, and yoga enthusiast. My life’s purpose is empowering spiritually curious women to be and do whatever the hell they want to. I’m here to share my journey and truth with you — unapologetically, with a touch of sarcasm and a lot of heart. I want to help you grow and follow your soul’s desire, not anybody else’s rules. I write weekly about personal growth and yoga on this blog. You can join the List to receive a weekly letter of inspiration and guidance!