What if we could take all the sad energy we are experiencing and infuse it with pure, loving energy?
Sounds like magic, right? But that’s exactly what I found in my very first Reiki treatment and every single energy healing session to follow.
I was introduced to my Reiki practitioners by a friend who knew that I was ready to release old energy patterns (stress and anxiety), self-limiting beliefs (thoughts like “I’m not good enough”), and experience a deep level of clarity and calm.
When I think back to my life before I was introduced to Reiki and other types of energy healing work, I picture a hamster on its wheel, feverishly running non-stop and chasing after something just out of reach. I was getting frustrated, exhausted, discouraged and even depressed.
I used to think that if I just ran harder, faster and for longer, I could have, be and do anything I wanted. But the truth is, that my nervous system was overwhelmed from the hectic pace I had established for myself. Couple that with being an empath (easily picking up on the energy of others) and living in an over-stimulated city like New York, I felt as though I was in a constant state of fight-or-flight.
I was surviving rather than thriving. My adrenals were shot and my “stress hormones” were on the rise. I felt hot and sweaty even in the winter, fatigue followed me around like a lost puppy. As you can probably guess, I wasn’t happy and definitely not at peace.
So when a trusted friend suggested Reiki as a way to slow down, breathe, rest, relax, trust, surrender and connect to my inner wisdom and loving energy of the Universe, I stepped off my hamster wheel and onto a massage table for a Reiki treatment. I didn’t even know what it meant to have my chakras balanced, but I was open to receiving guidance and healing. I was ready.
After receiving few Reiki treatments, I felt a huge physical, emotional and spiritual shift. I felt more connected with myself. I felt a lot lighter. I felt more freedom and my thoughts were clearer. There was less pain in my body. I felt ready to trade in my negative self-talk for deep self-love and appreciation for myself and others.
There is a knowing that all is well. I fell so in love with the healing power of Reiki that I decided to become a certified Reiki master myself. I was so intrigued by its history and benefits, that I wanted to learn more and help others feel the peace and calm I was experiencing.
Reiki is based on the idea that an unseen “life force energy” flows through us and is what causes us to be alive. If one’s “life force energy” is low, then we are more likely to get sick or feel stress, and if it is high, we are more capable of being happy and healthy.
As a practitioner, my job is to simply act as a conduit for the Universal energy to flow and allow optimal healing to take place. When I’m working with a client, I look for blocked energy in the body, whether it is physical pain or emotional trauma. To free up a client’s energy and get it flowing naturally again, I use my hands and lightly and gently touch different areas of the body to release blockages and promote peace, calm, relaxation, rejuvenation and pain relief.
My Reiki teacher, Sean, told me a healthy human body is like a free-flowing river. When a river is flowing, there’s fish and wildlife in it. When it starts to stagnate and become blocked, fish die because there’s not enough oxygen, and the plant life takes over because there’s no balance. Things are out of balance when it doesn’t flow. That’s the same as in the body.
One of my strategies is to remove energy blocks in the body by going underneath people’s defence mechanisms (unconscious coping techniques) to offer healing from abuse, trauma, stress—anything trapped and stored in the body. Through training and practice, I study how my clients move and speak, and can feel where each person is holding on and tightening up in the body. I tell them to imagine energy that no longer serves them shooting out of their feet or head in a bright golden light. Imagine releasing it into Mother Earth or the Cosmos to be transformed.
In turn, we experience more freedom in mind, body and spirit. That feeling of being “stuck” is released. Reiki practitioners create a sacred, safe, compassionate, non–judgmental environment where we don’t have to hide from our emotions—we can embrace whatever comes up and release it.
I find it beautiful to watch people transform after a session or series of sessions, and no longer ignore what’s going on in their bodies or be desensitized to their pain.
For some, the benefits of energy healing work may seem too “magical” to be real, but from my own personal experience, after trying Reiki, it’s hard not to believe in it.
REI – Spirit, Power, Essence
KI – Life Force, Breath, Chi
So Reiki actually means “spiritually guided life force energy.”
Just for today: Do not be angry
Just for today: Do not be worried
Just for today: Be grateful
Just for today: Work hard on improving yourself
Just for today: Be kind to others
Author: Kate Eckman
Image: Charlotte Astrid / Flickr
Editors: Sara Kärpänen; Renée Picard