This morning I sat in my home office, with sandalwood incense burning and soft music playing.

Though the open window came a gentle breeze carrying the sounds of early morning bird songs, with the steady patter of rainfall in the background.

I closed my eyes, allowing the scents and sounds to fill my senses. I connect to Reiki, the universal life energy. There is a deep feeling of relaxation as this energy flows, balancing my chakras (the body’s energy centers) and addressing any blockages in them. I then send Reiki to those who have requested this free, daily 15-minute distant Reiki session.

This Is Just What I Need

When I first joined Michal Spiegelman’s Reiki I class, I wasn’t preparing for the stress of a pandemic. I wanted to learn self-Reiki as part of my ongoing interest in exploring practices that will help keep me healthy and cancer-free.

My interest quickly grew to include a desire to share Reiki with others. My experiences with self-Reiki brought such noticeable change in such a short time. Perhaps most dramatically I felt a notable increase in my energy and enthusiasm for life.

This was such a remarkable change from the low-energy state I’d been in since undergoing the  cancer treatment and recovery since 2016.  The humor and playfulness that used be a part of me seemed to be gone. I wasn’t depressed, just very serious in mood and missing the creative bursts of energy that used to be common experiences.

All that came back after several weeks of daily self-Reiki. I was myself again! Going on to be certified in Reiki 2, and then as a Reiki Master was just the natural and obvious thing to do. It’s been a joy to see others experiencing similar beneficial changes after our Reiki sessions.

Now we’re living through the greatest global challenge of our lifetime. I’m even more grateful to have become a Reiki practitioner. I seriously don’t know what I’d do without Reiki’s energy healing for mind, body and spirit. I find I’ve had to increase and deepen my practice with other approaches during this time.

Perhaps you have a daily healing practice (yoga, Reiki, meditation, prayer, or other) that supports body, mind and spirit. If so, you might be finding it’s not working as well for you as it usually does. In that case you might want to try deepening or adding to that practice.

We’re Having to Cope With Turbulent, Global Change

The coronavirus is an incredible challenge to each and every one of us. It’s brought rapid, overwhelming change, penetrating every aspect of life. We’re dealing with loss, grief, uncertainty and fear.

If you’re  going through rapid shifts in mood and state of mind as you confront all of this, you’ve got plenty of company. A late March Kaiser Family Foundation tracking poll shows that almost half of all people in the US say the COVID19 pandemic is affecting their mental health.

Rapid emotional shifts, and concerns with emotional well-being are normal during in a time like this. But that doesn’t mean we should become stuck in difficult emotions. We can connect with our inner selves, our strongest beliefs and values, and our knowledge of what we are most drawn to. We can connect with others and find help and support. These things can  help us to both accept the difficult realities and shift our focus in ways that uplift us. We can add to our regular routines and practices to protect our emotional health and well-being.

By now we can all recite the guidelines for staying physically healthy. But what can we do to maintain our emotional health? In addition to any practices you’re already using, you might want to try one or more of these ideas, or use them to inspire some new approaches of your own.

  1. Be connected. The precautions needed to limit the spread of the coronavirus make it hard to stay connected, but we can still find ways to be part of mutually supportive relationships. We can interact in person when we can do so safely, and use phone, digital or even handwritten (!) means of communication for those we’re unable to see in person.
  2. Listen to your body and your intuition, which can guide you to getting what you need. That might be rest, relaxation and exercise. Or it might be that it’s time to set some limits so you don’t find yourself attempting to do more than is humanly possible.
  3. Try out different ways to accept and express feelings. Normally I express my strongest and deepest feelings by writing, and I’ve continued to do that. But I could tell that I needed something more. So I returned to something that was so helpful when I was undergoing cancer treatment. I made some collages a few days ago, not because I’m artistically gifted, but because I needed to spend some time in the mindful place of focusing on nothing but selecting, cutting out and arranging the collage images. The process was deeply relaxing. It helped me focus on emotions that I needed to listen to, soothe and then release.
  4. Offer emotional support. Just listening, attentively and compassionately is the secret ingredient to helping when someone has something on their mind. Helping others can bring a deep and meaningful sense of satisfaction. Remember, you don’t need to have a solution when someone is distressed. You just need to be there. And when you need that kind of help yourself, reach out to someone you trust and let them know you’d be grateful if they could listen to you.
  5. Seek opportunities for growth. While being completely realistic about the challenges and stresses we’re faced with, we  can also be open to opportunities to grow that may be present. Michael Spiegelman speaks to this on her blog. Her ideas include using this as a time for deepening self-compassion. This one is a struggle for so many of us, who are taught to care for others, but to criticize ourselves. Writing a letter of self-forgiveness is one way we can show ourselves compassion.

Staying Well Involves Connecting

I’m honored to offer help with staying well in body, mind and spirit with coaching and writing facilitation services that connect you to your own inner wisdom – that voice inside that knows what you truly want and need. My group offerings, like my writing workshops and mini-retreats offer unique opportunities to connect with yourself and with others. Distant or in-person Reiki (when in-person services are possible again) offers deep relaxation and energy healing that integrates body, mind and spirit.

During this time of uncertainty and for many, of financial hardship, my services are available on a pay-what-you-wish basis. My standard fees are unchanged, but if they are not within your means, you can let me know what works for you. Whether that’s a payment plan, or a reduced rate, it’s your call. So far this has been working well.

Take a look at my services and upcoming mini-retreats and workshops. If you’re drawn to one or more of them, and have some questions, please set up a free 30-minute, no obligation office hours call. I look forward to hearing from you!


Photo and Collage: NL Seibel, May 2020

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