Rock Bottom Is A Radical Awakening
Rock bottom. The end of the road. The lowest point. No place to go but up. I’ve been there. A few times, actually. I can now say, after making it through my rock bottoms, that they were a time of radical awakening. Dr. Shefali, clinical psychologist and author of Radical Awakening says in her book, “Rock bottom is the birthing canal to get back to our authenticity.”
Ouch! Truth hurts, I guess.
Transitions Are Difficult
Any major change in life, whether self-imposed or unexpected, begins a metamorphosis of letting go of our egoic, defenses. Usually, the internal changes happen step by step and moment by moment. A lot of times we ignore these internal rumblings, thinking that if we ignore them, they will go away. We sometimes believe that we are compromising for the sake of the relationship, but realize that instead, we are actually compromising our own authenticity and essence.
Why It’s Necessary Sit With Your Pain
I remember vividly what it felt like when I was going through my divorce 25 years ago. For any of you who have gone through a divorce, you may know that anger is an easier emotion to deal with than sadness. Anger fuels our ability to be courageous and get through the “un-coupling”, all the while waving our middle finger. Anger is easier to sit with than sadness, even though it’s not the best route to take.
Sadness is probably the most difficult emotion you feel when going through a divorce. Because it signifies the end of a relationship, end of an era, end of your hopes and dreams with this person, end of the family you both created, end of the relationships with in-laws, and common friends. It really feels similar to grieving a death. Extremely painful and difficult.
People like to run away from sadness for obvious reasons. Who wants to be sad? We may use alcohol or drugs to avoid it and mask our pain. We may get angry with our ex, place blame on others, and pull the Victim Card. But, the real spiritual wisdom comes in just sitting with it. Sit with the emotions you are feeling. Because if we are not clear about the answers we get from that deep place of knowing, we will continue to repeat those same patterns in our future relationships.
Enduring the pain and learning those lessons are necessary for our spiritual growth and evolution. Sometimes rock bottom is necessary to find out what you are made of.
Here is a great video from Marie TV, as Marie Forleo interviews Dr. Shefali about how to rise up from rock bottom.
Your Deepest Pain Fuels Your Greatest Strength
I can honestly say that the most difficult times in my life have ultimately become my greatest blessings. I’ve seen over and over again when I read people’s Soul Blueprints, that we all have strengths that aren’t always used until we are rerouted on our life’s journey. If we ignore our soul’s urges and our reason for being, we will keep being met with situations and circumstances to address our reason for being here. We know, at a soul level, why we are here and the lessons we are supposed to be learning, but sometimes we try and avoid the lessons. We can and sometimes do avoid them, and thus avoid our growth until it becomes impossible to not pay attention anymore.
Dr. Shefali talks about how we tend to think about “growth” as an “adding to”. We think that growth is when we prosper, we succeed, or when we add things to our lives. But, that is the greatest entrapment really, because success can never come from adding things. The true growth process is really a subtractive process because you get to realize who you are without these external attachments.
In my blog post, Who’s In Charge of Your Destiny, I wrote about our Teachers, Classrooms, and Lessons. Rock bottom is a vehicle for learning a difficult lesson while revealing the parts of you, maybe even the best parts of you, that have been hidden.
The darkest, most awful moments of your life have meaning. Just like the best ones do. If you find yourself at rock bottom, know that this is a moment to bring you closer to your true authentic self. Once you get there (and you will), you will see how much it was worth all of your pain and struggle, revealing a better life than you could have ever imagined.