Personal Growth Symptoms

Feeling Worse Instead of Better?

by Annette Colby – 

A great wave of healing and awakening is sweeping the world. A new time of personal growth, conscious awareness and awakened co-creation among humanity is flowering. People are stepping into an exciting ability to bring greater peace, love and joy into their lives.

Perhaps you have noticed this breath of awakening within yourself. However, instead of feeling better, you may be experiencing some unusual ― and often perplexing ― symptoms.

Bringing about change in our lives ― even attempting to increase our level of joy ― involves stepping outside our familiar roles and actions. And exiting beyond the comfort zone into the unknown can easily trigger intense emotional responses, mental confusion and uncertainty and physical aches and pains.

Point of Departure 

If you’ve been working steadily to overcome an addiction, move beyond an old limitation, bring more joy into your life, or manifest a new beginning, then eventually you bring yourself to a point of departure. It’s in this “space” between the old and the new that difficult feelings often arise. These feelings develop because ties to the old have not yet been cut and the final step into the new has not yet been taken.

This point of departure is a necessary phase of the journey. 

Within this space, former limitations and doubts that you have worked so hard to dislodge must now continue their ascent outward. Just as bubbles rise up and out of a champagne glass, outdated beliefs and associated heavier energies begin their exodus. In addition, unfamiliar new energy, intuition, and awareness are poised to come in and take their place.

When going through a process of personal growth, everything ― including your mind, body, and spirit ― must reorganize. This process of rewire and restructure occurs as a natural byproduct of growth, but often feels unfamiliar and disturbing.

Goodbye and Hello 

Rest assured that any discomfort you may be feeling is normal. The point of departure is one of goodbye and hello. Often parting and saying goodbye, even though desired, can often bring sweet sorrow. So although the experience may not make you feel particularly good, feeling worse before feeling better is often a sign of progress.

The biggest problem with personal growth symptoms is that people stop moving forward or discontinue the very path that was leading them to a more fulfilling life. Just like an elastic band stretched tight, the pull back into the old intensifies and the fear of releasing into the unknown grows in proportion.

Although your difficult feelings may be unexpected, rest assured that you are not doing anything wrong and you’re not going to feel badly forever. The important thing to note is that worsening symptoms do not indicate failure but in fact are usually a sign of just the opposite.

Point of Departure Symptoms 

Not everyone experiences exactly the same physical, emotional and mental symptoms when moving through the steps of personal growth and higher consciousness. Resistance to letting go or fear of change may be factors that contribute to the length, severity or intensity of individual point of departure symptoms. Remember that you worked hard to bring yourself to this point, and when you are ready, you will once again move forward.
Listed below are a few of the experiences and feelings you may encounter as you move forward into your new world of conscious living: 
  • A yearning to feel a deeper connection to your own inner spirit
  • Needing to know if there is more to life than what you already have
  • A compelling need to let go of old fears, addictions, or outdated habits
  • A readiness to finally release challenges with money, health, or love ― and new awareness of personal responsibility
  • A longing to release patterns of isolation, abandonment, anxiety, and illness
  • A burning desire to seek a more fulfilling and meaningful life – although you may not yet be able to define exactly what that new life would look like
  • An attempt to follow and trust a deeper, heartfelt sense of your true self, but not knowing how to express your authentic self
  • A heightened sense of intuition, but not trusting what you know to be true
  • Instead of elation, experiencing unanticipated boredom, emptiness, futility, and even depression
  • Feeling lost, no longer sure of what your role or identity is
  • Disinterest with traditions, obligations, and customs that once were a source of joy
  • A sense of being alone, different, or unable to connect with other people
Although the strange feelings associated with personal growth and increased conscious awareness are uncomfortable, they are a positive sign. While you may believe you are stuck or that you have failed, you are actually in the process of shedding old limitations and preparing for a new way of experiencing yourself in life.

Breathe, Relax and Trust Yourself 

If you recognize yourself in any (or many) of the above symptoms, take comfort that you are already on your perfectly unfolding evolutionary process into new beginnings and new connections.

To help yourself to continue moving forward, breathe often. Slow, deep, and conscious breathing is “spiritual lubricant” that keeps thing gliding and keeps things moving. Breathing moves old beliefs, emotions, and energy. Breathing gets you back in your body. Breathing gets you centered and helps you get out of your own way. Breathing also helps you to release stress and relax.

In addition to breathing, take care of yourself in gentle ways that help ease anxiety and soothe your body, mind, and spirit. Now more than ever, it’s important to support your journey of wellbeing with actions that nourish. Listen to your growing intuition and follow through on those gentle nudges to drink more water, sit in the sunshine, take a gentle walk, soak in a hot mineral bath, or eat some vibrant life-filled foods.

Even during the rough times, remember the purpose of your journey was to say “yes” to life and “yes” to allowing yourself to have an enjoyable life experience. Believe in your own process and take comfort in the knowledge that your uncomfortable feelings are positive signs of movement. You deserve the very best, ever and always.