I wrote awhile ago about the feeling of being lost in a gray world after an awakening. It’s the space in between awakening where the old ego is still holding on while the new self is emerging. It makes everything seem slightly impossible and every decision incomplete or unsatisfying. During this time period, spiritual awakening is still sloughing away the old skin, and it’s a challenging one in anyway that we try to hold onto that dead part of our lives. But another issue that also comes up is the confusion we have with being lost when we’ve actually become very, very free. On this topic, I wanted to spend a little time to help those of you in awakening orient to the gifts of this present moment that are right before you.

Nowhere to Go, No Need to Go Anywhere

Desires have dissolved. Desires are dissolving. There’s nothing out there that you want, and yet some of the old ego yearnings and ideas may still cling on. You may still think that you “need” a job or that you need a “long-term romantic partner.” Those ideas may grate against you, and you may struggle with them for a time. Instead, I encourage you to just let them go. For those of you in awakening, that is one of the most powerful medicines, and it is one that is actually a lot easier than you may think it is. For those not in this space, letting go is still a powerful alchemy, but you may find a lot more help in letting go through specific tools and techniques–journaling, energy healing, breathwork, etc. Nonetheless, wherever you find yourself, letting go is powerful stuff, and that’s what’s been happening during the awakening. All this extra stuff stuck in your closet has been gotten rid of. You don’t need it, and the more you go into an awakened state, the more you realize how few things that you do need.

The Fear of Freedom and Doing and Being Anything

When you no longer live in a cell, the wide open expanses of your life may blow you away. You’ve been living in a darkened cell in a prison eating the same gruel and porridge every day. Now, you’re in broad daylight in the most beautiful field in the world with every option of nourishment available to you and every direction available to you as well. What do you do? Perhaps the “doing” part of you is gone too. You don’t really want to do anything. So perhaps, you just need to sit awhile. Let those waves of overwhelming feeling wash through you so that you can get used to sunlight, fresh air, and freedom. Many of you won’t do this. You’ll actually go running back to the jail cell. If you’re lucky, they won’t let you back in to your old job; your ex won’t go back to you; and your house will get sold so that you can move on. If not, you’ll find out just how horribly uncomfortable all those things were all along.

Losing Yourself in Freedom

You see, most of your life, you’ve been trapped, and most of the choices you’ve made were made by the programming that you accepted from society. It’s a humbling thing to realize that you have probably not made more than 5 conscious decisions your whole life. How scary is that? It’s like blindly choosing what streets to drive down while driving blindfolded. Is it no wonder that humanity has getting into horrible crashes and messes for so long? We have had no vision, but now, you’re getting it. That’s why it is so shocking for so many people to awaken. Just about anyone who has the experience and has written to me says that it’s nothing like what they thought it might be. It’s actually very simple: it’s seeing clearly; it’s know what’s real through and through. And in that sight, you will see all the ways that you’ve been small-minded, jealous, greedy, fearful, hateful, self-hating, and otherwise petty. You may be overwhelmed by this on top of the immense freedom all around you.

What to Do When You Can Go Anywhere?

The first realization is that you can really go anywhere. The shackles are off. The second is probably the sense that everything is equal, so few things look better than other things. It’s not that you want to go hang out in dangerous areas equally to being in a peaceful natural setting, but truly much of the preferences are just gone. With them gone, however, you may at times feel moved to do something. In those moments, you can flow into that doing for awhile. And then you settle back into not doing. The presence of your being translates into the doing, so it becomes sacred doing anything whether it is brushing your teeth, helping a child, or yelling at a co-worker (although honestly, yelling and shouting come very rarely in this space mainly because people don’t know how to be taught through this methodology without being completely activated and going more unconscious in response). I use this last instance because all ways of being, feeling, and acting are open to you, and you’re not going to place immature judgments of “it’s okay to do this, but not that” onto things the way that old ego used to smear them over everything like the guy who puts ketchup on everything on his plate (Sorry, dude, but seriously? That’s a lot of ketchup).

Relaxing Into Freedom

But I am sure that some of you have those old parts of your ego screaming, “I have to do something. I don’t know where to go. How do I support myself?” Those are the old issues coming up. Just be with them for awhile in this space. You’re not going to starve to death. Instead, any way that you need to take care of yourself becomes available. And as I said this is not in an immature way where a new ego thinks that it’s so enlightened that it can just steal from someone. That’s not how this space of being is. While all things are available to you to do and to be, having touched deep Truth allows you to move from a space of integrity. You do what is necessary with a lot of love and kindness because to do otherwise would be out of truth and out of integrity, which will feel terrible to you. However, in the meantime, see if you can relax further into freedom. Relax into the ease of this moment that needs nothing past the general physical requirements of food, air, and water.

Continuing Difficulties With the Mind and Ego

Because the mind and ego don’t know what freedom is, they may still be flailing around like a man drowning in 2 inch puddle. The best thing you can do is to keep bringing awareness to this struggle. Bring awareness to the illusion of this struggle. Feel what you are feeling. Breathe into this space, and then let it go. This may go on for awhile or not.

But part of the re-programming of the mind and the development of the new spiritual ego–the ego that knows it is supposed to serve spirit and that it is, in truth, only temporary–is to teach it what being free is. Not having a tunnel vision anymore may feel like a lack of direction, which is frowned upon in society. But your awakened self can also see ultimately how directionless that very society is. Seriously, you can’t keep perpetually “growing” economies; having more money doesn’t make you safer or happier; and fighting over land is juvenile–you can’t take it with you. I can say all these things to you, but you’ve got to work on re-learning and re-programming to truly understand them and to remember the truth that you already know.

The World of Possibilities Before You

I know that it may be hard to decide what to do now that you can do or be anything. You may simply need time to dabble in lots of things, and that’s okay. You can explore your life anyway that you want to. You can dive in head-first or dip your toe in. What’s important is staying connected to your inner knowing during your transition and during life in general. It’s still easy to get knocked off of our balance from time to time, and that’s okay. We’re still human, although we may feel so sensitive to everyone that we feel somewhat super human (not in superhuman with super powers, but super delicate to every feeling and being in our lives and potentially around the world). So when you feel disoriented, just come back to this open space in the middle of your heart. Come back to this wide open meadow of opportunities where you can shape-shift to your heart’s delight or dive into a calling that now becomes absolutely crystal clear and effortless. Life is such a gift, and in these precious moments of shifting into the center of your true self, I encourage you to let go of any illusions of being lost and see the full breadth of freedom that is now expanding out before you.

For more thoughts, check out:

How to Find Spiritual Freedom


I'm a spiritual teacher who helps people find freedom from suffering.


  1. ''Seriously, you can't keep perpetually "growing" economies; having more money doesn't make you safer or happier; and fighting over land is juvenile–you can't take it with you'' I couldn't have put it better myself.

  2. I found your blog earlier this morning and have been reading relevant (to me) entries.

    I've needed this kind of support for so many years, its like your words have provided a kind of validation and a dam of gratitude has opened up. A few minutes ago, there was gratitude trickling down my face. But then something else you wrote caused spontaneous giggles to drag me back up.

    Where I am, its one of those mornings where the weather can't make up its mind. One minute pouring with rain, the next moment the sun is making all the drops of rain sparkle like diamonds. Those are the real diamonds.

    Thank you Jim Tolles, whoever you are 🙂

  3. I understand, and you're welcome, Jen. I am glad that my words can offer you the support you need. It's a gift and a service to offer them with love and light as always.

Write A Comment