If we’re committed to a spiritual life, it means we’re prepared to grow. But sometimes those around us make other decisions. It may feel that – like a child who outgrows clothes – we expand beyond the people and places that have been familiar and comfortable. This phase of the spiritual journey may challenge us as those around make judgments about our new state of being and our ever-evolving approach to life situations. Sometimes old friends and even family may not support the decisions and transformations that we make.

It’s okay. Like kids in school, we don’t all grow and learn at the same rate. There’s nothing wrong with them. There’s nothing wrong with us. Everything is as it is, even if we would like to pull others along with us for the explorations. Sometimes accepting that we need to move on – and leave others behind (or that they have chosen to let us go) hurts. Attachment and affections for old times and good times from the past don’t need to interfere with moving on.

The signs that it’s time to make a move out of a relationship or a place may include:

1)    Feelings of a lack of energy or connection. It may feel as if there’s no point to it, that dullness abounds and the vitality has departed. These may be temporary lulls, but if they prevail, then it’s a good idea to examine the situation more deeply.

2)    A sense of constraint. When the environment around does not foster, but instead inhibits your spiritual growth and brings feelings of contraction, it may be time to make the tough decision and move on.

3)    A sense of lack of purpose. If you’re asking, “What’s keeping me here?” and feel no real connection, pay attention to where your heart is calling you to go. I met a man recently who suddenly felt a yearning to go to Costa Rica to reconnect with his indigenous roots. Once he paid attention, a miracle happened. A friend who did not know of his desire, called him and offered him a job in the country.

Be careful (full of care) with those who are around you and don’t burn bridges. Sometimes these separations are only temporary and your paths may hook up again later on.

Enjoy the journey!

 Bio: Debra Moffitt is author of Awake in the World: 108 Practices to Live a Divinely Inspired Life. A visionary and teacher, she’s devoted to nurturing the spiritual in everyday life. She leads workshops on spiritual practices at the Sophia Institute and other venues in the U.S. and Europe. Her mind/body/spirit articles, essays and stories appear in publications around the globe and were broadcast by BBC World Services Radio. She has spent over fifteen years practicing meditation, working with dreams and doing spiritual practices. Visit her online at http://www.awakeintheworld.com.

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