top of page

The strange Physical Symptoms of Spiritual Awakening

You’ve been feeling under the weather for a while? It might not be the large pizza with the XXL soda you had last night, or the cake feast you had on your friend’s birthday a few days ago. Maybe you’ve recently taken off on a spiritual journey, and all you’ve been feeling are the physical symptoms associated with this turbulent trip. There are lots of weird and uncomfortable anecdotes of spiritual awakenings and many physical symptoms are amongst them.

Spiritual awakenings can be incredibly transformative and rewarding, but they often go along with many challenging and confusing physical symptoms. I went through most of them not knowing at that time what was happening to me, it was a pretty rocky and lonely period. So I felt compelled to share with you my own experiences and gathered the ones I heard about from others.

When you go through an awakening, it is most of the time a lonely and very intimate journey, so knowing what to expect is very important and can ease the adventure, or at least, make it less confusing or scary. First, know that you’re not alone and that all these symptoms are a part of the process. So let’s shine some light on all your questions and confusion. Let’s see if all those symptoms and sensations you’ve never felt before are indeed signs of your spiritual awakening, then we will explore how you can deal better with them.

But first… what Is Spiritual Awakening?

Spiritual awakening is the process of elevating your consciousness. A spiritual awakening can be a spontaneous experience (which personally I doubt but I am not dismissing it completely), but it usually happens after a dark period in our life like a deep bout of depression or a traumatic event.

The first steps of an awakening start when we begin to see through all the illusions of our world. In the process of going beyond our ego, we’re taking off the mask that we’ve been wearing only to find validation in our society. Then we come to realize that happiness comes from within, and that time, space, separation and fear are just illusions.

Going on this journey is a beautiful metamorphosis and a very liberating experience that not everyone will experience in their lifetime, so it is a blessing, but a blessing that comes with some big or little rocks on the road. The bliss that you will gain from the awakening is indeed amazing, nevertheless this transformation process isn’t just a calm, beautiful experience as we can hear sometimes. Believe me, it is not a walk in the park. It can also be so intense that you feel like you're going crazy, that all the world as you knew it is just crumbling in front of you and inside you. And it’s getting weirder when you start to have strange or even unpleasant sensations in your physical body. But let’s not dramatize! It’s normal that you may feel some uncomfortable, confusing and painful symptoms and that is the theme of this post.

Let’s dive in!

Major Physical Symptoms of Spiritual Awakening

The energies we use during this period of transformation are usually too intense for our bodies to handle, so we get some physical reactions. In any case, don’t let these prevent you from reaching the final stages of spiritual awakening. Yes, it can be disturbing and painful but there’s a way to make it more bearable and understanding why they happen is the first step.

The strange Physical Symptoms of Spiritual Awakening

Here are some of the common spiritual awakening symptoms you could experiences on the path of illumination

(Please note that these could also be symptoms of an underlying medical condition and in those cases, it’s important to seek medical help.)

1. Body shivering or trembling

Our body is a complex energy map with many energy centers, the chakras (7 main chakras, 114 in total) and different pathways, the nadis (72000), in which our energy travels. This whole map of subtle energy channels activate at a higher level once we go through a spiritual ascension.

During the process, this network of energy can give off so much energy that it may be too much for your body to handle which can cause you to shiver or tremble. The experience can be very disturbing. It can get even worse if you tell your symptoms to your GP. Most of the time, they will tell you that it is a symptom of anxiety, then will prescribe you some antidepressants. It will numb you for sure but won’t stop the shivering. It might just artificially slow down the process of your awakening which is not a good idea.

When the shivering would get too overwhelming, I used to tell myself: “Even though this is not pleasant, I accept and embrace my physical symptoms with gratitude.”, and believe me or not, grounding myself, meditating on my chakras and repeating that mantra would really make a difference… until the next time which could be a few hours later! :)) Moving my body would also be my go-to. When you put your energy in motion, it gives you the opportunity to release stored up energy.

2. Vertigo and dizziness

An awakening is a period when you are restoring the balance in many aspects while elevating to a higher frequency, so sometimes, your inner ears may be more sensitive to this readjusting which can cause you to feel off-balance or experience vertigo and dizziness.

I know this symptom too well, and doctors never found out why (of course!), until I read somewhere that it could be part of the process. It makes sense because if your body is going through a hurricane, dizziness and feeling off-balance is a very logical symptom, because you are off-balance during that time! :)

3. Throbbing, pulsing or other sensations on the top of your head

Your crown chakra is located a little above the top of your head. This is the chakra that connects us to Source, so the sensations you feel may be a sign that your crown chakra is activating and sending you signals.

I always feel my crown chakra when meditating. It gets also very activated during important astrological events, the full moons or eclipses. But it is enough to bring my awareness to my higher Self and it feels like a spiral dancing above my head, it is pretty neat. When I have a question for the Universe, the sensations can “talk” to me: jumping is my go-to for joy, because it is instantly what I feel, but sometimes when it is pulsing in a very strong way, it is my red-flag signal to “be careful”. Call me crazy, but I often have little dialogues with my 7th chakra. :)

4. Buzzing in the ears

As you begin to tune in to a different frequency, a higher vibrational one, you may begin to hear buzzing in your ears. This is also a sign that your senses are getting more heightened and receptive, but it also could be a sign of “listen!” when you’re about to get some downloads of information.

5. Heat on hands and feet

In Hinduism, hand postures known as “mudras” are supposed to aid in the transfer of higher energies, while the feet symbolize balance and grounding in the physical realm.

As you elevate to a higher frequency, your hands and your feet get more activated. The first ones are your physical connection to others and healing tools, while the seconds are your connection to Earth through which you ground yourself.

6. Tingling or spiral-like sensation between eyebrows

This might be one of the most common physical symptoms of spiritual awakening and something I often experience during meditation.

The space in between and slightly your eyebrows is where your third eye chakra is located, also known as Ajna or “the seat of the intuition”.

Tingling or any sensation may mean that it’s starting to activate more and that your intuition is becoming stronger.

7. Headaches

This could happen especially when there is a surge in energy such as during full moons. This is due to you being more connected with the energies in your surroundings.

I don’t have headaches and never had, but I can see how debilitating it can be for those who suffer from this type of pain. I invite you to try to do a full moon ritual to help you channel this intense energy into making positive changes in your life and hopefully help you to get rid of your headaches. You can also try a meditation I recorded for pain.

8. Skin irritation

Spiritual awakening includes the purging of everything that isn’t good for your higher self.

This may be a sign that your body is trying to get rid of cellular toxins and they’re coming out through the skin.

9. Symptoms of virus or infection

Spiritual awakening illness is more common than you think. Symptoms of a virus or infection that cannot be explained may just be your body trying to adjust to this new energy flowing inside you, and purge your body of toxins.

During a spiritual awakening, the lower density energies are removed from within you, virus-like symptoms are pretty common..

10. Insomnia, sleep disturbances or change in your sleep pattern

The intense energies activating in our bodies may be too strong that our bodies begin to need more or less sleep. Sleep disturbances are not uncommon either, i.e. you sleep more or have more disturbed sleep, often causing insomnia.

Our brains’ subconscious gets reprogrammed or rewired best while we’re sleeping which may cause you to wake up multiple times during the night.

11. You are increasingly sensitive.

As you become more connected and aware of the present moment, all your senses get heightened causing you to feel more sensitive to lights, sounds, smell, taste, and touch. This also includes sensitivity to physical, emotional and/or energetic stimuli.

You may begin to hear sounds you would have not heard before, notice details in your surroundings you never noticed before, and more. You might get very disturbed by scents that nobody but you can smell.

I am a highly sensitive person but since my initial awakening, my senses have gone really wild. It can be quite unpleasant, even disturbing at times.

12. Depression or anxiety

You may go through deep bouts of existential depression or moments of lingering anxiety. The shock of diving into your spiritual awakening makes you particularly unstable and vulnerable as uncertainty and fear follow you everywhere. Many times, people going through their spiritual awakening are misdiagnosed with a mental illness when actually they are in the midst of an existential crisis.

Because we are creatures of habits, our brain hates everything unfamiliar. So when everything we’ve ever known turns out to be false, when our life is turned upside-down in all domains, our brain activates a fight or flight response. This can cause us to experience a spiritual depression, or suffer from anxiety.

Discovery Call

13. Awareness of negative habits

You might think that this sign doesn’t belong to the list of physical symptoms of an awakening, but since it’s something both me and many of us have experienced, I thought it was important to mention. And that is that you become hyper-aware of the negative habits in your life and feel a strong desire to change them.

That’s a sign that you are guided to quit those negative habits in order to be in alignment with your higher self. I won’t make a list of common negative habits just because I am sure that some of them came to your mind, just by reading this paragraph. ;)

14. Bloating or water retention in the lower body

Because your consciousness gets elevated to higher levels, your body is trying to recalibrate and ground itself. This can give you a sensation of heaviness on your lower body. But it can also make you gain weight. Usually it is just water weight and it will go away eventually. Some people may even experience weight fluctuations.

15. Pain and aches

Pain comes from resistance. Resistance because you’re not accepting the changes which can be totally normal when you don’t know what is happening with you.

So your physical body will try to resist all these energy transformations happening inside you and it can show up in your body in the form of pain or aches.

Try to embrace the good, the bad and the ugly of the awakening and don’t pay too much attention to all the symptoms that will appear. I know it is easier to say than to do, but you know the quote: “Where the mind goes, energy flows!” Our mind has power to either take us into a never-ending roller coaster of thoughts and questions, or if we quiet it down, we create space and less resistance, so life, and here the awakening, can happen in an organic and less painful way.

16. Experiencing jerks, muscles spasm or rapid eye movements

These symptoms are pretty common, and even more when you meditate.

There may be times when parts of your body jerk or you can’t control the movement of your eyes. By the way, that’s also recurrent when a healer channels healing energy into you.

In my experience, what causes the jerks, rotations and other involuntary movements is again resistance. Energy is like water flowing through a riverbed. If there are rocks, it gets frothing and more agitated. If there are no rocks, it just flows. And if nothing is flowing, you don’t feel anything wrong. So during the awakening, you may experience energy more deeply and go deeper inwards when you recalibrate all the intense energies inside you (chakras activating, and negative energies trying to flow out)..

17. Food intolerances

Because you’re getting more in tune with your inner intelligence and connected to your body, some foods you used to like might suddenly cause you discomfort or even dislike. And the other around, you might be craving for food you didn’t like before.

Every cell in your body is intelligent so if your body is rejecting certain foods, listen to it!

18. Fatigue, chronic fatigue or exhaustion

One of the most common physical signs of spiritual awakening feels like chronic fatigue. This usually happens after you feel all the intense symptoms and energy downloads. Rest or take a nap and be mindful of your sleep habits.

Your body is going through a lot and needs its time to recalibrate. Don’t worry, this feeling of exhaustion won’t last, but again listen to your body and take action!

19. Feeling lighter

This is a very nice symptom and it usually appears after your body has recalibrated. Because you’re in a higher vibrational state, the heaviness from your formerly dense body has vanished. You just feel much lighter which you will sense more when you walk. It is like walking on a cloud!

20. Changes in diet

In that period, you might be called to change your diet or observing that you started to eat just what your body demands. Some will go towards vegetarianism or veganism, but the point is to do whatever your body needs in a specific moment. Don’t get caught up in a diet identity, it will not make your awakening my “efficient”, it is really about what your body wants.

Since you’re unveiling “what you think is right for you”, it will of course be about what you created or inherited from the expectations of your family, but it will also include your eating habits. Suddenly, meat doesn’t sit well with you. Sweets make you feel sick to your stomach, and instead you eat lots of fruits or sip, daily, that green smoothie you used to laugh about.

If you’re experiencing something similar to what I just listed, know that you are not alone.

Now, if you don’t handle your spiritual shifts well, things can get scary bad. This post and the others posted here about spiritual awakening are aimed to help you get out of this downward spiral. If things ever get too dark, please reach out to someone for help!

Why is spiritual awakening so painful?

Spiritual awakening involves the purging of everything that doesn’t match the higher self that you are about to evolve into. It includes breaking out of illusions you’ve based most of your identity on and these changes might be too much for the mind to grasp.

As you rise into higher frequencies, apart from the pain of losing people who are no longer a vibrational match, your body may try its best to resist all these unfamiliar changes you’re experiencing.

How do I deal with spiritual awakening symptoms?

Physical symptoms of spiritual awakening are not fun stuff, but it’s necessary to purge what doesn’t serve you so be grateful when it happens. You just have to accept that they’re part of your awakening process. Remember that what resists persists so just let them be. Also, doing some yoga, walking, breathwork or other energy-in motion practice may help alleviate the pain and aches that you’re feeling .

Know that these physical experiences all come and go. The “bad news” is that an awakening is not a few days or a couple of months sort of event either. So try resilience and embrace the journey because actually it lasts for years. It can and probably will come back around for another deeper and higher illumination journey. just when you thought it was over!

I am not here to freak you out, it is the simple truth, but in all those years you will have elevated your consciousness, gained experience, and taken out a few abilities to go with the flow! :)


Most people think that a spiritual awakening experience is calm and beautiful but it can be coupled with strange, uncomfortable physical symptoms as well.

Knowing that these are all parts of your journey will help eliminate the fears you associate with them so you could just let them be and trust that you will come out of the other side blissful and whole.

If you’re experiencing any of these physical signs of a spiritual awakening, know that you’re not alone, and that you’re taking a huge and important step towards a happier, more fulfilling life.

Are you going through a spiritual awakening? Which of these symptoms have you been experiencing? Let’s have the conversation going below...


You want to share your story, your struggles and the battles you won, and be part of our circle of sensitive and intuitive people. Come with us and let's chat with other highly sensitive people! Join the Highly Sensitive Empaths community:

Sign up for our newsletters to receive information and stories for highly sensitive people.

Join us on: Instagram and Facebook (private group)


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page