Everything You Need to Know About Spiritual Awakening: the 7 Stages, Symptoms, Signs and Resources for Beginners

spiritual awakening stages symptoms resources

Spiritual Awakening: The Journey 

Where do we start with spiritual awakening/enlightenment… it’s a feeling, a realisation that life as you viewed it and perceived it, was a lie. 

Perhaps not fully a lie, but through an awakening or enlightenment you start seeing things in a different light, you might question your life, the way you’ve been living and how our government runs the country you live in. 

For me, it started when I noticed to get really frustrated with TV adverts and how they try to make you feel like you need certain products in your life.

Buy this it’ll make your life easier!” “Get this on finance don’t pay anything yet, you can pay us later as long as we get your money eventually…

Yeah, that really didn’t go down well with me, but it made me realise that I’m changing. My perception of life totally shifted.

For the first time, I was TRULY seeing things, questioning my surroundings, my choices, my past and each decision. 

I realised that my choices were influenced by very limited information I had, to make these decisions. I realised how little I knew. 

It’s quite a deep topic – it’s quite a subjective topic too, everyone’s experience will be different.

For some, the spiritual awakening may take a while to realise that they’re going through a spiritual change and developing/growing into a new person.

Others might realise it through a dream, or a life experience/crisis. 

People going through a spiritual awakening might have different experiences and this will affect their opinion of what spiritual awakening or enlightenment actually means. 

It’s a great topic for a discussion and to share experiences of it – I am wholeheartedly inviting you to share your experiences, this is a warm and welcoming community.

Our Toucan Dream Tribe is open to everyone and we are guided by peace and being real – if you’d like to be a part of it, go ahead and share your spiritual awakening journey or questions in the comments.

You can also join the Tribe by signing up. We would absolutely love to hear from you.

What Is a Spiritual Awakening? 

Spiritual awakening or enlightenment is a realisation, a feeling and a journey on which you start seeing things from a different perspective. Your thoughts, perception starts changing, including your opinions.

Generally speaking, your whole outlook on life starts to shift. 

This change can be a sudden realisation or it can happen over a few weeks’ time, when you start to notice a change in yourself and how you behave, how you react to situations and social interaction. 

As you realise these shifting perceptions, you might be attracted to certain new experiences or aspects, theories, and you’ll want to start exploring that spiritual world. 

This is very much encouraged and advised, as you will feel the need to learn about the spiritual world from the voice within.

This awakened new voice might suggest some isolation and reduced social interaction while you come to terms with this new path. 

You might want to be alone during this time, as you come to terms with the new person you’re becoming.

It’s common to cut ties with certain people because you might feel like they no longer resonate with you, they no longer serve you in emotional or other ways. 

Energy Muse Jewelry

You’ll be tempted to experience new things, such as spiritual retreats or joining like-minded communities, as well as cutting substances from your life such as alcohol, caffeine and other stimulants. 

As you learn what you like and what no longer resonates with you, you might start to slow down and listen to that voice within.

You might realise that there is truly a “gut feeling” or an “inner voice” of your soul that is guiding you and you’ll be more in tune with it, surrendering yourself to the thoughts and feelings that come with it. 

This voice will influence your decisions, you’ll start to respect and listen to it more, which helps to shape the person that you are becoming. 

The spiritual awakening/enlightenment is a whole journey, it’s a process that allows you to realise who you are. You are growing, expanding your mind and soul, trust yourself and go with the flow. 

It may be a lifelong journey, it’s important to respect the timeline that your mind, body and soul need. Do not rush anything and just go with the flow of your energy, trust your body’s signals and you will grow and flourish. 


You might also take a break from what you’re used to, to really take in each moment and be more mindful, conscious of what you’re doing and what’s around you. 

It’s also common from spiritual awakening to become more mindful of what you eat, what goes into your body and the products you use. 

This is a very good thing as you start to realise what serves your body and what doesn’t make you feel good. 

For example, I started to take notice of my junk eating and snacking habits, they seemed to go away and I was no longer craving fatty foods or felt the need to snack to pass the time. 

I was conscious about how my body felt and I started to drink more water to nourish my body – raising my mindfulness. 

You might also become more aware of little signs, like seeing the number 1/11 or 7, seeing regularly 3 birds or similar. You will notice these things more often, and they will start to mean something, like signs from the spiritual world that you haven’t noticed before.

Again that might an area you’ll start to explore and want to learn more about.

The Learning Process

With Spiritual Awakening / Enlightenment, there is a whole new hunger for learning.

A craving to go deeper and discover the world from a new light, new aspects, dimensions, theories and alternative ways of living. 

There will be certain aspects or theories that you feel more drawn to. This could be ancient history, magick, fairies, angels, Celtic, folklore, Indian teachings, aztec/incas, tribal roots, and anything else closely linked to a magical way of living that goes above and beyond what we see in front of us. 

A spiritual world of stories, gods, the universe, the stars and how it’s all connected. 

You will find yourself more drawn to, connected to certain areas more than others. Respect that and go with what you feel drawn to and what resonates the most with your new being. 

For me it was healing crystals, smudging and chakras. Those topics really resonated with me, I felt a connection to them like they were calling out to me. 

And luckily, I did…

Trust this learning process and respect the need to learn, research, buy books, watch documentaries. There is so much out there, and so much information out there on the internet. 

I have included a Resources section below, listing great books and films that you can get started with. 

Is Spiritual Awakening Scary?

It can be a little frightening because it’s a serious reality check. You’re going through so many emotions, it’s so up and down and the world you used to see feels like it’s fading away… 

You’ll see the world in a different light, you might cut ties with friends/family in the process and that can be a little scary. But also liberating as hell! Especially if you felt like they’ve been holding you back.

Some people go through out-of-body experiences, visual dreams, incidents that feel almost like something in the universe was giving you a sign, and you’ll know when these things happen from another, spiritual world. 

Everyone’s experience will be different, but it makes it easier knowing that you have someone to share it with. Try and talk to your partner or close friends to share you feelings, to make the process more exciting and pleasant, rathe than scary or overwhelming.

You could also keep a journal to write down your thoughts and experiences.

Is Spiritual Awakening Real?

Very much so. There are so many people out there in the world who are going through this spiritual awakening/enlightenment process, it’s quite common – although it almost feels like a secret community that reveals itself when the time is right for you. 

They’re not actually secret communities, but the bond and the nature of conversations almost feel like a sacred, secret community that welcomes new members with open arms.

Just like us here at the Toucan Dream Tribe. If you’d like to be part of our community, sign up here.

The spiritual awakening/enlightenment can be physical, emotional, not seen but felt or a mixture of all 3. It’s a process that is very much felt within your whole being, and so it might be the case that some people don’t feel like it’s real. 

That it’s something made up in your head, for hippies to live in a world of their own. 

Screw those people. You create your own reality and anyone that tells you any different is not meant to be on your path. 

Anyone that tells you to “come back down to reality, to earth” is not doing you any favours and eventually won’t really allow you to grow spiritually. 

It is up to you whether you cut those cords or not, but ultimately you don’t want to prioritise others’ opinions over your own thoughts and feelings. 

You know what is right for you and your soul – and if you feel the spiritual awakening with every bone in your body, you should respect that and do your own thing. It may take time, but you’ll end up being so much happier and free, it’s a liberating process so just trust it ?

How Does Spiritual Awakening Happen?

It will vary from person to person but there are 2 main ways in which spiritual awakening can happen to you: 

  1. It finds you/reveals itself in a recognisable way of realisation 
  2. You start to question your life, looking for alternatives

1. This is when the awakening just finds you, it will reveal itself to you and you’ll know. Like a magnet, your body/vibrations attract it, prompting you to go searching for answers and questioning what you knew. 

It can be in the form of a dream, or an illusion, an event in your life that suddenly happens and something inside you just clicks. 

2. If it’s the latter, you will feel like you need a change because life, the way you’ve led it, hasn’t really felt right for you so you start looking for alternatives. You will look for other ways of living and new ideas.

If your life isn’t fulfilling you, you may find yourself distancing yourself from people and situations to search for your truth, your path and what actually feels right for you, listening to that voice within. 

You’ll know when it happens to you, regardless of the path that is chosen for you, by divine timing

Spiritual Awakening Stages

There are 7 main stages when it comes to Spiritual Awakening. Although each one of us will go through a different experience of spiritual awakening, there are certain patterns that occur within the enlightenment journey. 

As guidance of what you might expect during your spiritual awakening journey / enlightenment, there are 7 stages that are common and resonate with most people: 

Stage 1 – Unhappiness and feeling lost 

You may be feeling lost, empty, searching for something but not quite sure yet what that is… 

Stage 2 – Shifting perspectives 

Your reality shifts, changes your perceptions of everything. You might feel uneasy and disturbed with ways of society, feeling pain and anger towards the government, politics as your overall view of the world shifts. 

Stage 3 – Seeking answers and meaning 

You might be asking deep questions, searching for your truth, path and mission. This is when research and reading of new ideas happens. 

Stage 4 – Finding answers and experiencing breakthroughs 

You’ve found some teachings, beliefs and principles that resonate with you. You may experience glimpses of deeper enlightenment that help you understand this new world. 

Stage 5 – Disillusionment and feeling lost again

The teachings you found are no longer serving you, and you look for deeper answers elsewhere. 

Stage 6 – Deeper inner work

A time for reflection, listening to your inner voice through rituals and practices like meditation, yoga etc. 

Stage 7 – Integration, expansion, joy

This stage will form the person you become permanently with life-long changes. You might start seeing things from the bigger picture, feeling more aligned with yourself and your life. 

The stages will vary from person to person – we all have different souls, cravings, outlooks and ways of thinking/living/doing.

These stages are just an overall guidance and a general idea of the spiritual awakening journey to help you understand what to expect or whether what you are going through, is indeed a spiritual awakening. 

Spiritual Awakening Symptoms / Signs

The symptoms and signs of awakening / enlightenment will be very similar to the 7 stages outlined above. They will mainly feel or look like: 

  • Questioning your life, existence and purpose 
  • Looking for deep answers, guidance and new, alternative theories 
  • Making changes in your life through career changes, family/friends and lifestyle choices e.g. food, music, books, exercise
  • Feeling of distance, unhappiness, emptiness and loneliness until you reach your inner peace
  • No longer accepting the society you live in
  • A calling for something and an urge for change, but not entirely sure where/what
  • Wanting to be a part of a community 
  • Desire to connect to other human beings, nature and to be still/silent
  • Sensitivity and increased intuition
  • Visions/dream
  • Wanting new experiences and discovering new spiritual practices to change your lifestyle

Is Spiritual Awakening/Enlightenment Permanent?

Yes, spiritual awakening is a permanent change that truly changes you as a human being and a soul. Once you start to see things differently, there is no going back. 

Your thoughts and opinions might change and go up and down as you go through the whole journey. As you learn and develop more, you opinions change constantly until some of them stick.

It’s quite a big change, it can be bumpy and sometimes overwhelming, but it’s all part of the enlightenment process. 

Spiritual awakening reveals itself to you. According to the divine timing, it will be when it’s time for you to wake up from life as you knew it. 

Once you do, once the enlightenment journey reveals itself to you, that’s pretty much it. As you go through life, the journey only deepens and expands your mind and soul.

Is Spiritual Awakening a Religion?

Spiritual awakening / enlightenment is not a religion, but during the process you may find a religion that speaks to you. As you learn new things and research, you might come across a religion that feels like the right path for you to follow.

It depends on the development of your new principles and values, and if you find a religion that has those matching values, you might decide to embrace it and learn more about that religion. 

Generally speaking though, spiritual awakening / enlightenment is not a religion – it’s more of a journey and a process, without really worshipping a specific figure. 

You make your own rules based on what resonates with you. This can vary from person to person, whereas a religion is a set way of living and abiding of certain principles – that’s why spiritual awakening is not a religion.

How Rare/Common Is a Spiritual Awakening?

It’s becoming more common as more people share their experiences and form online communities to embrace this awakening, journey and the changes that come with it. 

It’s an awakening from the blindfolded living we’ve been leading since 1950s, where a certain way of living started to become a norm. 

House, family, job, car, paying taxes, holidays once a year, routine etc. Since then, it’s been the goal for everyone. The way to live and aim for for pretty much everyone around the world. 

More and more of us are now waking up from that zombified and normalised way of living. For most of us that means being stuck to a screen, while life spins around us without having any control to stop it, change its course or have a say. 

Spiritual awakening can be something that suddenly happens to you, without expecting it.

Or you might feel drawn to the whole spiritual awakening idea and decide to delve into it yourself through research and questioning things. 

The questioning is the key “symptom” and how you know that you’re going through the spiritual awakening journey – you start to question the small stuff and the bigger picture aspects, asking big, deep questions.

Can Spiritual Awakening Cause Anxiety?

Not necessarily, it depends on your spiritual journey and the person you are. If you already suffer with anxiety and then go through a spiritual awakening, your anxiety can heighten if you for example get really anxious about this new world you discovered. 

The spiritual / enlightenment experience will be different for everyone, and whether you have a history of anxiety will also depend on whether the journey makes this better or worse.

It might make you feel a little scared, but that’s okay. 

To help with anxiety heightening through spiritual awakening, you can try meditating, yoga and dancing/moving. The movement of body as well as the stillness of the mind through meditation makes a connection between the body and the mind. 

Sometimes they can feel like 2 separate entities in the awakening process – to connect them back, try combining meditation and dancing to restore that connection. 

You can also try sharing your feelings and thoughts with family/friends or write them down in a journal, to get them out of your system.

You might also find great strength and confidence in the spiritual awakening, and thus easing your anxiety – it could actually free you from anxiety. 

How Does Spiritual Awakening Change You?

Spiritual awakening changes your perception of life, you as a person, your choices and the people/items you surround yourself with. 

The changes will be different for everyone, but mostly the changes are overall about all areas of your life as you reassess each aspect of your lifestyle and how you live. 

As you search for answers, the answers will shape the changes you make in your life. 

Spiritual awakening can change: 

  • Your personality 
  • Your opinions, outlooks, perception and ideas 
  • Your eating/drinking habits
  • Your career and future prospects
  • Your wants, wishes and desires 

How Long Does Spiritual Awakening Last/Take?

It will vary on each individual experience – it can last months, years or it can be a life-long journey/process. For most, it will take between 12 months to a few years. 

The time and duration will vary depending on how much time you are spending coming to terms with this new world, learning about new ideas and accepting this new path. 

It can also depend on the environment, whether you like where you live, whether you can easily connect with nature to find solace, and whether you have people around you to support you and share your feelings with. 

How to Start a Spiritual Awakening?

If you would like to start your spiritual awakening journey, the first thing you should do is RESEARCH and READ.

See what topics resonate with you, through watching YouTube videos, documentaries and reading books on spirituality, enlightenment and awakening

Try and join discussion forums (Reddit is great for this), to see what topics and theories people are discussing. You can easily get involved, ask questions and share your findings, it’s a welcoming community of kindred spirits. 

To start with, I would recommend research topics such as: 

spiritual awakening stages symptoms

This is just to give you guidance, you might now want to research all these topics – just focus on the ones that you feel more drawn to. You will then find sub-topics that you might be interested it, and you might want to follow these afterward.

I know it’s so hard starting out something new, hopefully this list will give you a good starting point ? There are also some great books and films, which I have listed in the Resources section below. 

When Does Spiritual Awakening Happen?

It can happen unexpectedly, at any age and during any situation or time in your life. It can be during a family or life trauma, emergency or crisis, or it can be spontaneous, like a dream or a sudden vision/realisation. 

It will vary from each person, along with the effects and the results, depending on how you decide to perceive it and what you feel prompted to do about this new experience. 

For me it was during the first lockdown in the UK in March 2020. I was furloughed from work for 3 months and I had a sudden realisation and a vision of what my life was going to by, and should look like. I saw things clearly, for the first time in 26 years my mission and purpose were clear. 

At What Age Does Spiritual Awakening Happen?

Spiritual awakening / enlightenment can happen at any age. Although most people that experience it are any age over 17. 

As children and teenagers we look up to our parents as role models and we don’t really question our life’s meaning or look for deeper answers at the early age. Although it’s not impossible, the awakening can of course still happen at an earlier age. 

It’s more common to go through the awakening / enlightenment over the age of 17 but essentially, it can happen at any age…


Books and films are going to be your new best friends during the Spiritual Awakening.

Some great resources to start with are:


Revolutionary Road:



V for Vendetta:

The Truman Show:

I Origins:

Conversations with God:

The Secret:


What the Bleep Do We Know:

The Celestine Prophecy:


The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle:

The Secret by Rhonda Byrne:

The Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are by Alan Watts:

The Miracle of Mindfulness by Thich Nhat Hanh:

Greater Spirituality Community by Marshall Vian Summers:

Inner Engineering by Sadhguru:

Awareness by Anthony de Mello:

The Doors of Perception by Aldous Huxley:

Social Media Accounts

There are also great Instagram and Pinterest accounts to follow to get inspired and help with the journey. It can feel like a lonely or isolating experience, but forum groups like Reddit really help! 

Knowing that there are people out there in the world going through a similar experience to you, sharing those experiences can make you feel at ease and like you’re not alone. 

You can get engaged, share your own feelings and help you along the way when you start to feel a little shaky, lost or unsure of the whole process. 

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3 months ago

Thank you so much! Super helpful information and reassurance! Much love!!!

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