Many people who experience the dark night of the soul wonder “how long will this last!” and if there is anything they can do to make it end sooner.
The dark night of the soul is a period of intense spiritual crisis, where an individual often feels disconnected and depressed. It’s a time of great confusion, despair, and uncertainty.
During the dark night of the soul you’re plunged into your shadow to do the deep work that is involved in transcending it.
- The duration of the dark night of the soul varies from person to person. Some people’s experience lasts only days while others can last years.
- The most important thing you can control to shorten your dark night of the soul is to surrender to what arises. Let go of all resistance and allow things to come up and be seen no matter how painful.
- No matter how long this experience lasts, it is a natural part of the spiritual awakening process. You will come out the other side a happier higher version of yourself.
The dark night of the soul can last varying lengths of time from person to person.
Some people may experience it for only a few days or weeks, while others may struggle with spiritual depression for months or even years.
This difficult period lasts depending on several factors including:
- The severity of the spiritual crisis
- The level of your spiritual development
- Your willingness to confront your demons
While this can be a difficult and painful experience, the dark night of the soul is a tremendous opportunity for growth and awakening. Many people come out of their dark night of the soul happier and more at peace than ever.
Understanding the Dark Night of the Soul
Dark Night Of The Soul Symptoms
First of all you may be wondering if what you’re experiencing really is a dark night of the soul.
Let me list some common symptoms of this experience to see if it matches with your experience.
Common symptoms include:
- Depression and despair
- Nihilistic thinking
- Questioning everything
- Heightened anxiety
- Inner conflict (often between the higher and lower self)
- A breaking down of who you thought you were (ego dissolution)
- Emotional turmoil
The Dark Night of the Soul is characterized by feelings of despair, emptiness, and a sense of disconnection. These negative emotions are often coupled with lots of questioning and confusion.
This happens because a seismic shift is occurring inside your mind and soul. The leap into greater consciousness requires the death of many things including your ego, your old ways of thinking, and trauma.
The thing is, death and change are painful. With such a large inner shift there will be a lot of suffering to be transcended.
How Long Does The Dark Night Of The Soul Last?
The first thing I need to mention is that there is not a one size fits all answer to this question. We are all unique souls with our own personal journey.
Some people take just a few days to process everything and enter out of their dark night of the soul. Others may be stuck in this phase for years.
It’s best not to compare or judge yourself if you find your journey is taking longer than you would’ve hoped.
Intensity of Experience
The more intense your emotions are in this experience, the longer it may take to work through it. This is often a signal that you are dealing with deep-seated emotional wounds and trauma. These deep wounds may take longer to heal.
You will be forced to confront their deepest fears and insecurities. All of your demons will come up to test you.
No matter how intense the emotions that arise are, they can be worked with. The key is your ability to dive into the suffering head on.
Your Ability To Surrender And Process
The one factor that is in your control throughout this entire experience is your ability to surrender to what arises.
It’s so crucial that you allow things to come up and to be experienced. By not resisting the trauma and despair you will fully experience it.
When you fully experience what is being presented to you by your psyche it will begin to dissolve.
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Keep practicing surrendering to the experience no matter how painful it may be. This will help you get through your dark night of the soul faster.
With time these feelings will begin to relax and subside into more pleasant feelings of deeper connection with your spiritual self.
Navigating Your Dark Night
Going through the dark night of the soul can be so challenging and tiring. It can last way longer than you expect it to. These are a couple things to keep in mind while going through this truly unpleasant endeavor.
Taking Care Of Yourself
It’s very important that you don’t stop doing basic self care during this challenge. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep, eating well, and engaging in activities that bring you joy. It’s also important to take time for yourself and do things that help you relax and recharge, such as spending time in nature and with people you love.
Don’t let yourself slip away during this difficult time. Try your best to maintain your health even on your hardest days.
You don’t have to go through the dark night of the soul alone. Though it may seem that no one understands what you’re going through there is always someone who can help.
Seek support from friends, family, or a therapist. Try connecting with a spiritual mentor online (Check the MyGuru spiritual mentor directory).
Having a guide throughout your dark night will make it much more bearable.
Remember that this journey is temporary and you will come out stronger on the other side.
The duration of the dark night of the soul varies from person to person. It can last for a few days, weeks, months, or even years. The dark night of the soul is a natural process of spiritual growth and transformation. It’s just part of the journey.
Your ability to surrender and allow things to come up and be experienced will help shorten the duration of your dark night. It’s important to remember that this phase is not permanent and that at the end of it all it can lead to profound peace and spiritual awakening.
Remember that the dark night of the soul is not a sign of weakness or failure, but an invitation to embrace your shadow and transform into your highest self.
Hi, I’m Ryan. I’m a meditation teacher, spiritual seeker, and founder of nurtureyourspirit.org. I’m glad you’re here! I founded Nurture Your Spirit because of my love of meditation, spirituality, and spiritual awakening.