Raising Your Energy: Harnessing the Power of Breakthroughs in Midlife Transformation
In this episode, we discuss the energy of a breakthrough and how it manifests in our lives, particularly during midlife.
We explore the uncomfortable feelings and experiences that show up right before a breakthrough, such as a rise in frustration and a sense of “having had enough”, or things just seeming to go wrong all at once – and why their presence is actually something to get excited about!
I also share my own experiences of navigating through chaos and difficulty as I made bold decisions and stepped out of my comfort zone, even though fear and resistance were present.
Personal development is not about denying or avoiding uncomfortable feelings, but rather navigating them with greater ease and skill.
So grab your headphones and join me on a journey to connect to purpose, claim authentic confidence, and harness the energy of change to work for you!
Jump on the waitlist for the next cohort of The Midlife Upgrade Course here
Full Episode Transcript
Hey, my friends, how are you? Let’s explore the energy of a breakthrough. This idea of what it takes to create a breakthrough in our lives, particularly midlife, has really been up and front and center for me as I’ve been working with these amazing women in the midlife upgrade course, which we are partway through and really been tracking with them.
what’s going on for them psychologically, emotionally, and even spiritually? And those beautiful flags that show up, they don’t feel beautiful. This is what I wanna talk about, these flags that show up that are a sign that you are nearing a breakthrough. And I think if we can identify them and understand them a little better, they are uncomfortable feelings, right?
It feels uncomfortable when these signs show up, but if we can identify them more clearly, then when they do show up, we can actually work with them skillfully because we know that what is around the corner or what is coming, if we just keep going. A breakthrough. Many years ago when I was doing my counseling training, a part of our course curriculum was a book called Going to Pieces Without Falling Apart and
by a book by Mark Epstein. I’ve read this book 25 years ago, but the title really says it all right, that it can feel like everything is going to pieces when we we’re right near a breakthrough.
But that doesn’t necessarily mean anything has gone wrong. So what clients often identify is it can, your internal experience can feel a little worse before you are at breakthrough. And because what’s happening is you are shaking out of that status quo. You are shaking your moving out of that box of where you have been, particularly if you’re feeling stuck.
So that can feel quite uncomfortable, but you may not be where you want to go or be just yet. Right? But there are certain signs that arise in our nervous system and actually in our life, because I think that our life can get a little bit shaken up, right Before we change, we shift into that next level.
And so some of those signs are, An increase in frustration, right? Like I’ve just fricking had enough, and you are gonna be willing to make changes because let’s face it, right? Sometimes things can feel a bit shitty, but we sort of just, we stay with a status quo. Either because we are fatigued or we’ve been in that pattern a long time, or we don’t have the energy or the space to break out of it or the resources to break out of it.
And it’s always been for me, it’s often been for me when I know I’m ready to make a shift and make a change,
and I’m waiting for that change to come through, and I’m making steps to make that happen. It’s often when there’s a rise in my energy that really prompts me to step out of my comfort zone and do something really different, and that rise in energy can come in the form of anger, frustration, his softness, I’ve just had enough.
Whereas my mother used to say, I’ve just had a guts full of this, and that can be this. Volition that moves us forward because if we are so comfortable in our discomfort, then it can sometimes be unlikely that we’re going to make a move out of the norm. And sometimes I’ve seen in my life where I’ve had.
A sense of where I wanna go. I’ve had a really clear intention of where I wanna go, but I’m not there yet. So there’s a gap of where I wanna be and where I wanna go. And as I’m traversing that gap to get where I wanna be, it can often feel like we are going backwards. Like life sort of shows up a bit chaotically, things fall apart, things don’t work so well, or something.
Out of the ordinary happens, and it sets us into a bit of a chaotic state, and that’s hard to manage, and it’s even harder to manage a midlife. But I’ve had enough experiences of that now that I can, I’m still feeling the feelings around it, right? So it’s not about denying the feelings. I’m not advocating for toxic positivity here.
I’m still feeling the feelings, but at the same time, I can kind of zoom out and understand, oh, this shitty thing has happened, this unexpected event has happened, and I am not loving it at all. But I kind of get this sense of, oh, something’s actually changing here. I’m moving outta my normal patterns and rhythms, or this is just the.
Thing that is going to get me making that bold decision and making that bold step and really inside myself, not reactively, because it’s been building for a long time, right? I’ve known that I’ve wanted to create the shift, but sometimes it’s the energy of that chaos, of that frustration of that I’ve had enoughness that spurs us to make a different choice.
To go a different way. And so I think if you are in that sort of change place, you know you have that feeling where you’ve got your foot back there in what it used to be, and then there’s another foot and you’re stepping forward, but you haven’t quite landed yet and there’s some chaos and some difficulty challenge that shows up.
Then if we can zoom out and have that bit of a bird’s eye view on it, that can support us to navigate through that challenge. And like I said, the shitty feelings still come with it, right? Because life is up and down and we don’t do this work to try and completely get rid of uncomfortable feelings. We do this work so we can navigate those stormy seas with greater ease and greater skill.
That to me is the point of personal development, because just if we are aiming to live a life of all joy, all ease, no challenge at all, then we’re trying to live a fairytale because life is up and down and challenges will happen however. When we have come home to ourselves or when we are doing that work and coming home to ourselves in that place of radical acceptance of yourself and your circumstances and life just as it is from that place, you are much more empowered to make different decisions and choices to forge and co-create the life that you desire.
That is very different to this toxic positivity that we are often fear that we should always be rainbows and unicorns and always happy and always joyful.
That’s just not life.
That to me is unhelpful because we are denying the truth of our feelings and the truth of our circumstances, so we can own the truth of our experience from that place of radical acceptance and still open up to gratitude, to life, to the joy of connection, even through the sorrows, even through the difficult times.
So I had this experience over, over 10 years ago now where my partner and my family and I, we lived in a place in a small town and we were, we were kind of ready to move. We were ready to change schools for our oldest kid, and we were ready to leave, but we sort of hadn’t made that step forward and we didn’t really see how we could do that financially.
And it was just feeling quite tricky. And so we were talking about it for a long time, but nothing really happened. And then something happened where my partner had an accident on his skateboard and our dog got injured and then our dog bit another poor person’s dog.
And it wasn’t serious and it was all dealt with, you know, well, and by the council. And, you know, it came out of the dog’s injury and trauma and that kind of stuff. And it really wasn’t an ideal situation. And it was horrible and we felt really bad about it. And I think my partner broke his hand or his arm and it was just really shitty.
And then of course we had to talk to the council ’cause our, our dog had done what he’d done. To the other dog and paid for the vet bills and, you know, owned our responsibility. And
it was shitty and it was hard,
and then what happened was that there was some conversation, shall we say, in, in our small community. And the upshot of that event was, was that was like the final piece where we went, you know what? It is fricking time for a change. Not that the event directly correlated to that, but it shook things up enough.
The interactions that happened afterwards was enough that we went, okay, we actually need to create this change that we are wanting to change. We have had enough, and there was enough energy stirred up by that, that we started to take those steps and we didn’t exactly know how it was gonna pan out financially and all, all the rest of it, but we were willing to try and make it happen.
And it was, a successful outcome and it was really timely that we moved, it was probably overdue for us to move, and it was that chaotic event that happened that was enough to stir up momentum in us to create the change that we wanted to create. And so what I’m saying to you is that, If you are wanting to create change and it’s happening, but it’s taking a while, or you are unsure of the next steps to make, sometimes life shows up in a chaotic way, a difficult way that engenders more.
Life force in us. But it’s not, it’s not like positive, yay, I am doing this thing. It’s gonna be great. I’m so excited. It’s more like, holy shit, this is so overdue. I’ve gotta do this. And then you go forward in spite of your uncomfortable feelings and in spite of your doubts and the other thing that can happen.
It’s not always something that life brings through, you know, as in a chaotic event. Or a difficult event. Sometimes it’s just what I’ve seen for clients is that they do enough of the inner work and they might, for instance, we’ve done a life mapping exercise very specific to my midlife upgrade course, and for some women that has stirred up.
Feelings and sensations, but what’s actually there with those feelings and sensations. And some of them are great, some of them are positive and some of them are not. But what is with those emotions and sensations is life force synergy and like this volition that leads us into change. And so when I see that for clients and when I see that in myself, I acknowledge the discomfort and I acknowledge the challenge within that.
But I’m also, I also get excited for my clients and for myself. ’cause I know when that happens. This is a signal that you are stepping out of your comfort zone and that you are moving into that growth zone. Or change is coming, change is happening, that there’s volition within you that if you take those actions from that place, you are gonna start creating change because change is not always comfortable.
Change does not always immediately bring us joy, peace, and ease. A lot of women and men in midlife, they’ve been in relationship for a number of years or decades, and they separate in that time of midlife. And I’ve worked with many women that have separated, you know, in midlife. You know, we often think that the separation is going to solve our problems with our partner.
It’s going to bring us peace and joy and calm. Well, in the first year or two of separation, there’s actually more chaos and there’s more shifting and there’s more uncomfortable emotions. There might be immediate relief, but then you have to work everything else out and the living arrangements, and if there’s children involved, you have to work that through.
You have to adapt to the changing relationship. You have to adapt to changing friendships. There’s a lot of shifting that goes on.
And so the, the outcome that you’ve been seeking, Doesn’t always appear immediately in many circumstances, but if you stay the course and you ride out those changes of, you know, particularly with a separation, like your whole life is changing, so it is uncomfortable for a period of time. But as you live that experience and go through those steps, then you do come to that place of.
Finding that peace and that new life and probably those new connections that you’d been seeking. So that is an example of how, you know, those really challenging feelings and emotions can show up as you move into a new era of your life. And when I was starting my business Tahi five years ago, It was exciting and it felt really thrilling to be creating this beautiful, healing center complimentary therapies that I had been wanting to do for many years.
And along with that came a lot of really difficult emotions. Around the financial risk, around the commitment around having to navigate partnership dynamics, around investing money in a business that we were setting up from scratch. That felt really risky for me at that time of my life. And so a lot of my beliefs and emotions and trauma around security, safety, and money all came to the surface.
And whilst on the one hand, creating this beautiful collective clinical space in the center of new Plymouth was like a dream come true, and I was thrilled about it. It was also really, really scary and I would have, and I did have a lot of anxiety and worry about it, and I was able to stay the course ’cause I could really feel that it was bringing up those. Limiting beliefs that I had around security, safety, financial wealth, abundance, all the rest of it that were really being shown to me very clearly because I’d stepped outside of my comfort zone and really all, all I could do was walk through it. Walk through it, feeling the fear and feeling the courage of knowing that this is what I needed to do with the support of my business partners.
And, and we did it and I grew to that. We all grew, but I grew to that next level of my evolution and that is what change is about. Right? And our brain is hardwired to protect us from change actually as adults. Once we become adults, our brain is hardwired to protect us from change, that it is easier to stay where we are at, stay in the discomfort of the status quo than to step out and risk change.
And so it sometimes takes those chaotic gifts that life gives us. In the form of unexpected changes and challenges or as we do our inner work, it sort of, it releases energy that has been blocked in our subconscious. And then what that can give rise to is actually a greater sense of frustration and dissatisfaction.
And what I’m saying is, That this is a powerful experience when we’ve recognize it and we are willing to ride it out and to ride that energy into the change that we are wanting. It’s not always easy, but when we can recognize it and we have that awareness, then we can see, ah, hang on a minute. This is actually a key.
To the change that I’m wanting to create, and so I’m willing to live with and through and take action through these uncomfortable feelings, thoughts, and emotions because I know that this is creating the me that is going to be able to create that change.
Change in midlife when it comes from our own volition, not, not when it’s coming from. Life causing us to change through a change in circumstances. But when we want something to change and we are making those steps to change, midlife is not the easiest time to do that because our physical energy is not always stable.
It can be a little bit up and down. We might have some anxiety or low mood going on. We might have the physical symptoms of menopause going on. Yet because we’ve got those that change in the brain happening from perimenopause, then it’s actually a really prime time to break out of that box, to break out of the status quo of our life as it is, and perhaps it’s life as it’s not serving us anymore and take the risk.
Do the thing and make the steps towards how we want our life to be. I am so here cheering you on with this.
I hope that that’s been a helpful couple of strategies and understandings around. When those difficult emotions show up, feelings show up, and when life serves us, these challenging, maybe chaotic circumstances, how we can actually harness the energy, the volition, and the power of that for the change in our life that we are wanting to create.
Because my friend, you deserve that. You deserve a life where you feel whole, complete, and loved exactly as you are. You are infinitely worthy and you are an incredible human being.
Alright, my friend, have an amazing, amazing week. Harness that volitional energy inside of you. If you’re noticing that coming up for you, go forth and create change in your life. So much love to you and I’ll talk to you real soon.