I get this question a lot from clients, often when they are in great pain; either physical, psychological, or spiritual. They come seeking relief, having been sent by a friend or Google search, correctly informed that Reiki and massage are powerful, holistic healing techniques. Recently a young woman jokingly requested that I vacuum out all her anxiety. If only I could! Alas, healing does not work this way.
Human touch and muscle manipulation are potent vehicles of healing, as is the universal life-force energy transferred during a Reiki session. They can provide the nudge that the body or psyche needs to return to alignment with the Spirit. They can also offer the boost in motivation to follow through on lifestyle changes, the release of self-sabotaging beliefs, and the comfort of remembering that we are not merely broken bodies with problems struggling alone in an unfriendly universe. Reiki and massage are some of the most powerful healing tools that I’ve ever come across in my twenty plus years of spiritual awakening.
And yet it is up to each of us individually to decide if we wish to receive the many benefits these tools have to offer. We are ultimately the ones in control of our own healing and well-being. Providers like myself can offer support to our clients, but until emotions have been fully acknowledged, felt, and released there is no shortcut. Our pain is very often an indicator that we have gotten off-track. It serves the function of reminding us of our greater purpose, our true nature, and our mission in this lifetime.
My compassion allows me to dream of taking away the discomfort everyone experiences, but my inner knowing counsels that this would indeed be a disservice to the evolution and ultimate wellness of others. Being human is a difficult job. But we have been blessed with countless systems of support, transformation, and integration. If you’re wondering if a treatment with me might be helpful, please check out my website! I offer a free 15 minute phone consultation for this very reason. If you’re just not into massage or Reiki, that’s cool too. I hope you seek out one of the other alternative options so readily available today.
Several times each week, I work with clients who desire the benefits of massage, but are obviously anxious or even terrified about getting undressed. As a recovering shame-aholic, I understand this dilemma completely. When you dislike your body, you want to hide it. You don’t want anyone to know your secrets of imperfection for fear of being rejected or humiliated. I lived most of my adult life like this. It’s debilitating and isolating to experience the world through these lenses. As a compassionate person and professional therapist, I want everybody to be 100% comfortable during each session, so I take the time to explain that I will leave the room while clients undress as much or as little as they wish, and that they will be covered and their privacy protected. Yet I often still recognize that look of panic in their eyes while we are chatting before the session begins.
One day after working with a client like this, I was bicycling home and came across a hawk resting on a fence. I stopped to witness this creature’s majestic presence. I contemplated how regal this bird looked and felt a wave of inspiration. This hawk has never, not once, been ashamed of it’s body or feathers or beak. It has never thought, “Oh, if only I was sleeker or faster or more colorful.” It does not sit around criticizing itself or categorizing its faults. It just simply is. A hawk accepts itself exactly as it is, without a need to compare itself to another. (Or at least, so I imagine!) Can you visualize a beautiful bird like this hiding its head under its wing whimpering, “Don’t look at me! I’m not worthy. I’m just a hawk. I should have been an eagle.”??? NO!
So why do we humans treat ourselves this way? I believe it’s because we’ve forgotten who we truly are; that we are unique individuals with talents and passions that contribute to a better world; that we are worthy of being loved and accepted just the way we are. Not because of what we’ve done to prove this worth, but just simply for being ourselves. What a relief it is to drop the constant stream of self-criticism and to relax into the comfort of self-acceptance. I invite you to try an experiment and invoke the spirit of the magnificent hawk next time you feel doubts about your appearance, performance, or worthiness. It’s impossible to feel ashamed about anything when you’re in the flow of proud hawk energy.