There is an ancient Vedic philosophy that explains how humans go through a new developmental cycle every seven years. Each seven-year cycle corresponds with one of the primary chakras. According to this belief system, we have one primary chakra that dominates our life lessons and major themes for seven years, before moving on to a new dominant chakra cycle.
It is understood that throughout our first seven years of life, we are primarily influenced by our first chakra, that is our root chakra energy. During our next seven-year cycle, ages 8-14, our dominant guiding force comes from the second chakra, our sacral chakra. The dominating chakra energy in our life changes with each seven-year milestone.
For more information on the chakras: A Beginners Guide to Healing Your Chakras
What is Significant About the Number Seven?
The number seven signifies fullness and wholeness in life. It has always been considered a sacred or auspicious number and is noteworthy in almost every major religion. In the Bible, we are taught that God created the Earth in six days and rested on the seventh. In both Islam and Judaism, it is believed there are seven heavens.
“In the New Testament the number seven symbolizes the unity of the four corners of the Earth with the Holy Trinity. The number seven is also featured in the Book of Revelation (seven churches, seven angels, seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven starts).” - Source
Furthermore, most cells in the human body regenerate themselves every seven years, leading to a scientific theory that we grow a new body every seven years. We also have seven main energy centers (chakras) in the body. Additionally, there are seven days in a week, seven wonders of the World, and seven Archangelic realms of training for the human Soul.
Whichever way you turn, the number seven seems to consistently symbolize perfection and completeness. The number seems to be connected to the rhythms and cycles of our reality. This is, perhaps, why the seven-year cycle is so fascinating to many people. The theory suggests that it takes seven years to master the lessons from a specific period before moving on to the next.
The Guiding Influence
It may be helpful to understand which cycle you’re currently in, so that you can learn to work with these influences, rather than against them. Each seven-year cycle offers its own set of challenges and life lessons. And if you understand this sacred knowledge, then you can use the seven-year cycle to help understand and prepare for the important life lessons that lie ahead.
Now, keep in mind that just because you’re in a seven-year cycle, that doesn’t mean that the other chakras aren’t important. All the chakras are important, and they’re always influencing us. But I like to assume the 60-20-20 rule when working with the seven-year cycle.
Here’s how it works:
60% of your life during each seven-year cycle will be dominated by the primary chakra associated with that cycle.
20% of your life during each cycle will be dominated by the other chakras.
20% of your life during each cycle will be dominated by other influences (life choices, events, etc.).
So, say you’re a 29-year-old who just entered the first year of the throat chakra cycle. For the next seven years, about 60% of your life will be focused on life lessons regarding the throat energy. For example, your main lessons will be about speaking your truth, refining your communication skills, self-expression, and healthy emotional release. Nearly sixty percent of your life lessons and major themes during the next seven years will be put towards these energies.
When we transition from one chakra cycle to the next, we enter a crisis year. The first year of each cycle is often some of the most difficult years in people’s lives because we’re suddenly presented with new challenges, adversities, and life lessons to overcome. We essentially enter into a new energetic wave, and it can take time to integrate these new frequencies into our life.
If you are someone who can easily embrace change and has a growth mindset, the crisis years are nothing to worry about. However, if you’re stubborn in your willingness to evolve from the lessons life throws your way, then you may struggle in certain aspects of your life such as your physical and emotional health, your relationships, or your career.
When I turned 15 (my first crisis year) I had my heart broken for the first time. I struggled that year as I allowed many people around me to use and manipulate me. I lacked personal boundaries and gave my power away to everyone. At the age of 22, when I entered my heart chakra cycle, I got married! As you can imagine, I had an up-hill climb of lessons regarding romance, love, and relationships. I also remember going through somewhat of an identity crisis around this time as I was trying to figure out who I was now that I no longer had school and athletics to define me.
At 29, as I transitioned into my throat chakra cycle, I had a major dark night of the soul moment. My entire life came crashing down on me as I found myself sick, depressed, and beaten down. I had suddenly realized that I was not living my Truth, and I spent the next seven years on the path of getting clear about who I was and what I was here to do.
Last month, I finally entered a new cycle, the third eye cycle. I'm quite excited to see what this new phase has in store for me. I can already reflect and see how much I've changed in seven years. The lessons of truth and authenticity almost seem like a thing of the past, as the energy is now guiding me in other directions.
Root Chakra: 0-7 Years
The first seven years of life are about learning to become comfortable in your new, physical body. Your Soul has been through quite a spiritual journey, and now it must get acquainted to what it feels like to be submerged into the density of human life.
During this period your physical health and basic survival needs become top priorities. You’re learning foundational survival skills such as how to eat, walk, talk, and take care of yourself.
You’ll spend this time establishing the main questions:
Where am I?
What makes me feel safe?
What makes me feel comfortable?
If you did not have a happy early childhood, did not feel safe and protected, or went through major health issues during this period, then you will most likely struggle to balance your root chakra throughout the remainder of your life.
Sacral Chakra: 8-14 Years
At around eight years old, you will begin to transition into the next cycle. It’s in this second cycle where your second chakra, that is your sacral chakra, will become the dominating energy. It should be no surprise that most children will go through puberty during this cycle as the sacral chakra governs our sexuality and reproductive organs.
It is here, during this cycle that your major life lessons will be centered around learning to creatively express yourself and experiencing pleasure and passion. You’ll also begin to refine your emotional intelligence skills and learn to express your opinions in healthy and more mature ways. After all, you’re tired of being treated like a child, and are ready to expand your awareness.
This is a very influential time in our lives. Your social circle is expanding now that you have school, extracurricular activities, friends, and teachers. Kids these days also have social media and the internet at the tips of their fingers to further influence them.
During this cycle, you’re working to establish:
What are my talents and skills?
Am I being honest about my true emotions and opinions?
What brings me joy and pleasure?
Solar Chakra: 15-21 Years
You’re a teenager during this phase and entering the complex world of high school and college. For some people, the solar plexus cycle is the most difficult cycle to endure because it tests our confidence, self-esteem, and willpower every step of the way.
It’s during this cycle where you also begin to learn a lot about human rights and personal boundaries. At some point during this cycle, you will most likely become legal to drive a vehicle, drink alcohol, purchase tobacco, vote, and get married. And just because you can do all of these things now without your parents' permission, doesn’t mean they’re always right or appropriate for you. Therefore, you’ll learn a lot about what it feels like to assert your independence and stand in your personal power.
The questions that will significantly shape your life during this time are:
What makes me feel confident to achieve my goals?
Am I listening to my gut feelings or just “going with the crowd”?
What actions or personal boundaries can help me stand in my power?
Heart Chakra: 22-28 Years
Welcome to adulthood! The real world awaits you and now you must find a job. This is where your heart energy should truly dominate your focus. It’s during these seven-years where you really start to home in on what it is that you love to do. And, if you’re lucky, you’ll be able to find a job that allows you to express your heart-felt talents and skills with the rest of the world.
Many people choose to get married or engage in long-term relationships during this time because their heart energy is on over-drive. Our big life lessons during this cycle will often focus on healing, attracting, and ending relationships. But, even if a romantic relationship isn’t in the cards for you, this time is also about learning to love and nurture yourself in new and more affirming ways.
The heart may get broken during this period. I, myself, experienced several dark night of the soul years during my twenties. Life shattering events and changes have a way of cracking our hearts open even more so that light and healing can find its way in. It’s in this time where we learn how to self-heal and care for ourselves in deeper ways.
The key to successfully maneuver through this cycle is finding the answer to the following questions:
How do I give and receive love?
What do I need to care for myself and love myself?
What mistakes did I make that I need to learn from and let go of self-judgement?
Throat Chakra: 29-35 Years
As you come into the throat chakra cycle you begin to establish a better understanding of your Truth. This is where your higher purpose and life mission really starts to make itself known. And as you start to walk a more purpose-driven life, your priorities change and evolve in big ways.
This is the cycle where all the communication challenges and lessons come in. You learn how to better express yourself with your voice, how to be a better listener, and how to communicate for your highest good. Part of being a good communicator is learning to see all sides of a situation and practice non-judgement skills. Talk about big life lessons!
You’ll devote ample time forming answers to the following questions:
How am I realizing (or not) my highest potential?
Am I living a lie by fulfilling someone else’s goals and expectations of me, or am I truly following my higher purpose?
Am I communicating my true feelings?
Third Eye Chakra: 36-42 Years
This next cycle is about tapping into and honoring your intuition. The third eye chakra becomes the dominating energy during this period. This article describes the third eye cycle as “the time of the final battle: wisdom of the heart vs. wisdom of logic.” It is in this period where you strongly reevaluate your life choices and ask yourself whether you followed your highest calling.
For many, this is a rearranging or rebuilding phase of their life as they come into better alignment with their Highest Self. Those who are in balance with their third eye energy will already be living a life that is guided by their inner compass. But those who are not in balance with this energy, will have many opportunities to adjust and course correct.
Answering the following questions can help you during this period:
Am I following my heart or my brain?
Am I realizing my true potential?
Am I living the life I always dreamed about?
Crown Chakra: 43-49 Years
The crown chakra energy connects you to God, your Higher Self, and to Universal Energy. The forties can be a time for deep spiritual awareness and higher consciousness. That is, if you can slow down enough to ride this energetic wave!
During this last seven-year cycle you may find yourself becoming less interested in material things and activities revolving around chasing the dollar. The major life lesson here is to learn to discover the outpouring of God's unconditional love, assistance, and guidance throughout your life. This energetic season will teach you to let go of outdated patterns that no longer serve your Soul’s evolution.
The dominating topics during this period are:
What is truly important to me in my relationships with others?
What do I feel is my Divine purpose?
Can I shift my consciousness of past events, patterns and belief systems and let go of the lower vibrations attached to them?
Age 50 and Beyond
When we turn fifty, we begin a new cycle, starting over at the root chakra as our guiding force and working our way back up the chakra cycle. This dramatic shift in density is often why so many people experience a “midlife crisis” during their fifties. It’s during this major transition that people often find themselves reevaluating their life and stepping into new beginnings.
Life lessons that weren’t previously learned or mastered during their appropriate chakra cycle will come back up for you to reevaluate and review:
Root: Age 50-57
Sacral: Age 58-64
Solar Plexus: Age 65-71
Heart: Age 72-78
Throat: Age 79-85
Third Eye: Age 86-92
Crown: Age 93-99
If you want to learn more about the chakra system, I'd recommend my online course, Energy & You: The Complete Guide to Your Energy Body and Chakra System. In this unique workshop, you will learn all about your chakras, your Aura, and your energy channels, as well as ways to heal and balance these areas in your life.
Here are a few additional resources on this topic:
Knowledge about the seven-year cycle can help you to explore hidden emotions and point to crucial periods in your life that need healing. With this information, you can now look back upon your own life and see if this seven-year cycle resonates with you. You can also use the seven-year cycle to give you insight into what lies ahead for you and the rest of your life.