In my early 20s I was very fortunate to meet author and speaker Jim Rohn, and to hear him share some of his most well-known philosophies. At the time I didn't have enough life experience to fully appreciate the profound nature of what seemed like very simple teachings, yet they have stayed with me for over twenty years and I think of them often. One of his most famous quotes seems particularly apt in relation to healing, and the message at its core is something I often talk about with clients, and on Instagram and Facebook. He said:
For things to change, you have to change. For things to get better, you have to get better.
...When you grow, everything in your life grows with you.
So how does this apply to healing? It's quite easy to treat the symptoms of physical or emotional discomfort - you can apply a salve, take pills, or even have surgery for physical symptoms. You can mask emotional pain - whether that's by shopping, eating, using alcohol, drugs, or any other method of temporarily numbing your feelings. However, none of this deals with the underlying problem. Complimentary therapies such as Reiki help to deal with both physical and emotional issues, but even so, for true and lasting healing to occur there must be something more, and it has to come from within you. In the spirit of Jim Rohn's teachings, I would say that for things to heal, YOU have to heal.
During treatments, I regularly detect energetic blocks that relate to different symptoms, and after working to clear and balance the energy it is recommended that my clients continue to work on these things between sessions. If you deal with the symptoms without removing the cause of an issue, it will eventually return. It may take weeks, months or years, but at some point it will be back, bringing you another opportunity to listen and to heal!
Many people request Reiki to experience deep relaxation, and may not expect to leave with 'homework' but I increasingly believe that when someone makes an appointment, some part of them already knows that they need help to heal something, whether big or small. If you're reading this, the chances are high that you do too!
So what can you do about it? How can YOU start to heal yourself? The first step is undoubtedly self-awareness - becoming conscious of the issue(s) that you need to deal with. Start by noticing any 'symptoms' or areas of discomfort in your body or in your life. This was discussed in the last post / podcast episode in some detail. If you missed it, please go back to learn about the three simple exercises you can start using today to 'tune in' to whatever it is that your body is telling you.
As you become more aware of these things, you might find you already know what you need to do - whether it's something you can do yourself (by making changes or accepting things as they are) or with additional help (e.g. where other treatment or counselling is necessary).
Self-awareness sits at the heart of healing. Being self-aware is not a way of avoiding or escaping life, but a way to have a healthy relationship with life so you can experience the full spectrum without suffering.
- Sandy C. Newbigging
Sandy C. Newbigging's excellent book 'Calm Cure'* includes (amongst other things) a great way to uncover the underlying causes of the things that bother you. First, he asks how your symptom makes you feel. What is your experience of having the symptom or condition? When you're clear about the way it makes you feel, consider where in your life you feel or have felt the same way. This might refer to something that is being repeated from your past, because it still needs healing.
As an example, let's imagine you're feeling dizzy and the dizziness makes you feel unable to stand unassisted. You ask yourself where else you feel / have felt unable to stand up on your own and realise that you don't feel able to stand up for yourself at work. This situation is familiar - you can see it was an issue you also had with your parents and it has never been resolved.
When you're clear on where you feel (or have felt) the same, it's time to consider the root cause of your conflict. Do this by coming up with a single short sentence which includes a 'causal' link between the way you feel and the REAL issue. In our example it might be something like "I feel unable to stand up for myself at work, because I don't feel able speak out about my needs." So the root cause of your conflict is not being able to express your needs.
When you see the cause of the conflict in this way, it becomes much easier to identify how you want to feel instead. State this in a clear and concise way. So in our example, you might state "I want to feel self-expressed at work". Coming from this perspective, it's much easier to find a way to deal with the issue. Even if your knees shake at the thought of expressing your needs at work, you can surely come up with some different ways to do it.
If you're working through the exercises from my previous post, you can start to incorporate this technique too. Try asking yourself how you feel when you experience each symptom / pain / condition. Consider where else you have felt the same way, and identify the root cause of the conflict behind it. Write down how you want to feel instead, then come up with some different ways you could achieve this.