How to Survive A Personal Earthquake

Love Yourself Rich
February 14, 2015
Mind the Gap
March 20, 2015

Have you ever had one of those phases in your life when you feel like the earth is shifting under your feet? Like you are walking the same path, but somehow the ground underneath feels different? Actually, instead of walking on a clear path, if feels more like trudging through mud.

That is the kind of year I have been having…

I don’t know, maybe it’s the massive amounts of snow we’ve had in New England, or maybe it’s just the winter of my discontent, but it feels like there has something hibernating inside my heart for along time and now it is trying to wake up. It just hasn’t made its way to the surface yet. It’s like one of the dreams you have when you know you are dreaming, but you still can’t bring yourself to full consciousness.

Ah, and there it is, consciousness. Wouldn’t life be awesome if everything we wanted or needed was immediately obvious and ready at our beckon call? There are powerful manifesters out there who might argue, but for the most part life doesn’t work that way. Instead, it’s like the blessed snow, you know the grass is under there, that in a few months the sun will be shining and the birds will be chirping, but right now you’re looking at 90 inches on your lawn.

(Oh beloved Boston, I love you, I really do, but enough is enough!)

No matter how much we wish for immediate clarity, we have to be patient.  Plants and trees use the winter season to break down and re-make certain proteins so they are ready to germinate in the spring. We humans use this time of dormancy for the re-ordering of our souls. We must break down old beliefs about who we are to allow the next incarnation of who we will be to take form. Trying to rush this process can have disastrous results.

It’s like sleep. Our bodies need that time to rest and repair our cells and to give our brains a chance to process the day’s events. If we don’t get enough sleep, we’re groggy and grumpy. We can’t think clearly and our performance suffers. Interrupting our sleep damages the necessary healing process our bodies need to function at their best.

Yet when it comes to our evolution, we want nothing more than to skip the recommended 8 hours of repose. To hell with dormancy, we want transformation NOW! We think by getting up at 2 o’clock in the morning the sunrise will come more quickly. It does not. If the plants and trees tried to bloom in January, their new buds would quickly die. Our nucleus needs time to crystallize.

One of the things that makes our growth so painful is we often feel we are alone, that everyone else is moving forward and we are stuck. It is a lie. Everyone is metamorphosing all the time. It’s just that we are not all going through the same stages at the same time. You may be working away in your cocoon while someone else is about to take flight. It can look like they are soaring and we are sinking, but we are each doing the work needed at that time in life to develop.

Do not compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.–Jon Acuff

Going through a transmutation can feel like an eternity, but take heart. The sun will shine again and you will come out the other side reinvigorated.

In the meantime, here are some tips for surviving your own personal earthquake.

1. Find a supportive frame. When the earth is trembling below your feet, it’s important to find stability around you so you feel safe as your internal plates shift. Lean on people who love you and care about your expansion.

2. Do not stay in a crumbling structure. You may be tempted to cling to the old paradigm. It’s natural to want to revert back to familiar ways, but doing so jeopardizes your well-being. There is no safety there, only stagnation.

3. Pay attention to the tremors. You know the saying, first God whispers, then shouts, then knocks you over the head with a 2 by 4 to get your attention. (Ok, maybe that’s not exactly how the saying goes…) Those little rumblings in your gut are trying to tell you something big is on the horizon. Those murmurs are clues to your next step.

4. Go outside & sit on the grass. I’ll be honest, a personal earthquake can feel really crummy at times, like your banging your head against the bloody wall. It’s really, really, REALLY important to be gentle with yourself. Allow yourself the time and space to find a reflective refuge so you can listen to your heart.

5. Expect aftershocks. Even when you get complete clarity on your next move, you will experience contractions. The excitement of a break-through is intense and we tend to recoil several times before a permanent change takes hold. This is completely normal and doesn’t mean you have not succeeded. If you know that’s how it works, you can move forward with more ease.

Finally, the most important piece to survival is having faith. When the earth is literally undulating beneath you, taking even a tiny step can feel like trying to walk on water. You fear as the earth opens up in front of you, you will fall right into the abyss. But instead of a wild, eternal descent, your better self rises up to meet you. You are rewarded for your courage and the prize is a clearer, richer and fuller version of an authentic you.

As for me, the ground is still shaking, but I know there is something wonderful brewing. As I get more clarity, I’ll keep you posted.

Until next times, here’s to hitting all your high notes!



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Have you ever experienced a personal earthquake? What were the lessons you learned?

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Heather Poduska is a brand strategist, business coach and opera singer who helps entrepreneurs and small business owners create client attractive brands, polished brand images and brand communication strategies to increase their visibility and impact in the marketplace and grow their businesses.