Tips for surviving an existential crisis.
You’ll make it through!
I walked off the stage of my 2013 college graduation, right into the worst existential crises of my life.
I became an embodiment of a cocktail of depression, anxiety, and existential panic!
I took off my graduation robes and stared bleakly at the world —
“What, in the actual fuck, was this world all about?”
“What the fuck did I just walk into?”
My education bubble had finally burst, and I was no longer shielded from the world, by the identity of “student”.
Besides, life was dragging me by the edges out of my cocoon and safety net.
I felt so helpless and hopeless, as I confronted the reality of living in the world as an adult.
I needed to find a job. And not just any job, but one, which paid beaucoup money!
I needed a befitting financial reward for all those years of studying.
Most importantly, I needed to make my parents proud of their daughter for all the financial sacrifices they’d made, to give me a great education.
Matter of fact, I needed a career!
I needed to quickly step into the next chapter of my identity.
After all, “student” had just expired!
No longer being a student meant — the clock was aggressively ticking by, in my head. As family members eagerly stood by, counting down the minutes and seconds, for me to finally become “somebody”!
Yet, instead of becoming “somebody” like — a lawyer, doctor, accountant, financial analyst, or consultant…
I became confused, anxious, and depressed.
All of a sudden, I felt this enormous weight to figure it all out, at once…
I couldn't stop the incessant thinking that this period of my life ushered into my life.
There seemed to be so much to figure out! And one question seemed to unwind another question, just like a roll of unraveling toilet paper.
One question, ushering in the next question, ushering in the next…
My thoughts about life became endless and ceaseless. Until I was eventually, mentally and physically, overcome by the weight of my incessant questioning.
Worst of all — I couldn’t seem to stop the process.
Some of the biggest questions I had to confront, revolved around the meaning of life.
What was the meaning of life?
Why was I created?
Who am I?
Why were human beings even made? Every time, I looked around, all I would see was us, humans, fucking shit up, anyway! All we seemed to be doing was slowly destroying the planet.
Why the fuck was I even here?
I didn't ask to be born into this messy plot!
I was plagued by ceaseless existential questions, it often forced made me to flirt with the idea of death.
I wasn't suicidal!
But I’ll admit I contemplated the possibility of not minding if the whole show, somehow ended for me.
I didn't know what I was doing earthside here anyway.
Maybe, non-existence would erase the weight of these painful thoughts and feelings.
For so long, I felt stuck trying to exorcise myself of these heavy thoughts and morbid feelings.
I prayed about them.
But who was I praying to anyway?
Where was this God I had grown up believing in?
Who and what was God anyway?
Because “Man” seemed to have created This God in his own image and likeness anyway.
God was even a man, right?
Isn’t that why we say “He”? How convenient!
Before I knew it, I was in digging deeper — excavating my entire Christian foundations, and breaking apart my identity as a Christian.
From dawn to dusk, I spent time working my way through my existential crises.
I spent hours contemplating, reading my ass off, researching, and exploring.
My heart leading me, and healing me.
I discovered other humans had gone through what I was going through, and even written about their discoveries on their life journeys.
They were writers, philosophers, theologians, etc…
Consequently, I enrolled myself in a Seminary in New York City for two years to study religion and theology. All in the attempt of contemplating and answering some of my questions.
I was so dedicated and determined to work my way through this because not seeing this mission through, meant the death of my soul, for me.
I was already a dead woman walking, searching, for meaning and a reason to live.
Thankfully, I’ve gotten my mojo back for living.
My confusion hs parted away like clouds, to unveil a clear mind and an enthusiasm for living
Although I may have fleeting feelings of depression that arise due to external and situational factors such as finances, I’m not an anxious and depressed person anymore.
My questions are not as pressing to me anymore, as I have contemplated and made peace with the unanswerable ones, and found answers that make me sleep at night, to the answerable ones.
Now you may ask, how did I arrive here after such a mind-bending and long life-changing journey?
How did I survive and work my way through an existential crisis, with no professional help?
Sacred Plant Medicine
At a point in my journey, reading was no longer enough for me.
I needed to know things within my being, by experiencing them, for myself.
Consequently, I became drawn to sacred indigenous plants, which are used to induce consciousness-expanding states, and healing, spiritual experiences.
I experimented and journeyed with Pyslocybin mushrooms, Peyote, and Ayahuasca.
And I will admit those plants changed my life forever!
I no longer needed to contemplate the nature of God, I could now experience this Divine Force in deeper and altered states of consciousness.
Through the power of nature, I could know God for myself. I didn't need a book or preacher to tell me who or what God was.
I highly recommend trying these sacred indigenous healing technologies, at least once in your life. Of course, under the guidance of a shaman!
Cultivating a spiritual life helped me through this dreadful phase of my life.
Contemplating religion and demystifying this Divine force known as God, helped me understand the complexities of this “God” power, which also lay dormant within my being.
Fortifying my spiritual life with practices such as Meditation also helped me watch and understand my mind in newer ways.
You don’t need religion to cultivate spirituality.
If you feel you’re being called to investigate or build your spiritual life, don’t ignore those internal impulses. They may be leading you right towards your healing and answers.
During this period of my life, it seemed like I lost many people, and I felt incredibly, lonely!
In hindsight, I realize some paths are just meant to be walked alone!
However, it is always beneficial to have a very tiny community ( even if 2 -3 people) You could share parts of yourself with, in the process of contemplating these existential and heavy questions.
The truth is — not everyone in your life may be ready to confront those big questions for themselves, and that’s ok!
Two people helped me at different points on my journey.
And so I hope you also find your people to hold your hands during certain daunting parts of the process.
Chin up. You’ll make it through.
Reconnecting back to your ancestors is a powerful way to explore the depths of existential questions relating to the individual/self.
We all come from a long lineage of other humans.
Therefore, it is important to look back to see the kind of human beings we came from. What they were up to? What they used to do? Who they were? Because their blood runs through our veins.
And if you didn't know — blood, which is made up of water, is one of the largest storage of information within the body!
We carry within us centries worth of information encoded within our DNA’s.
You could be holding onto centuries-old of trauma within your body, waiting for you to let go off, in order for you to expand and heal.
By connecting to your ancestral roots, you have the power to heal yourself in ways and places you didn't know you had healing to do.
Going through and honoring the process.
My advice for you is to go through and honor your own process because each individual’s process would be different.
In my life path, I had to go to a Seminary to have space, time, and the tools to contemplate information that was at the foundation of my identity, then.
Yours will be different because we are different.
Honor your feelings, impulses, intuition, and what’s coming to you, and let it lead you on your journey.
Seeking earnestly with my heart
How do you honor your process?
By seeking earnestly with your heart. And your heart will lead you towards your healing and the answers to your questions.
Do not undermine the power of the heart in your body!
If you want to surprise yourself by learning something new, you should google the spiritual and energetic powers of the heart and learn more about the other roles and capabilities of your heart.
In conclusion, I say — listen to your heart, and she’ll guide you home to your healing, resolution, and peace of mind.
Good luck on your journey.