How Reiki Helps Depression

How Reiki Helps Depression - HSP Health Blog

 

How Reiki Helps Depression - HSP Health Blog

Reiki Hand Position at Bellasante Spa, Boston

Can depression be treated?

Can depression sufferers find relief without medication?

Understanding Depression

I think depression is very misunderstood. So often it is treated as a defect or a personality problem.

Studies have shown that long term depression comes from the way our brains develop in childhood. The implication is that adverse childhood conditions of abuse or serious neglect, living with problems that we cannot control and cannot solve create changes in how our brains function and  can cause depression.

Covering Up Depression Doesn’t Work

So often we think that when we are not feeling well, that the solution is a trip to the doctor or emergency room. We naturally seek a way to get rid of the pain. Sometimes we medicate ourselves with food, drink, entertainment and other diversions. It doesn’t work.

The distractions don’t last for long and then the problem returns and we end up feeling even worse; however they have the negative effect of causing us to feel like failures because we do not seem to be able to control our lives and ourselves.

Different Types Of Depression>

The vicious cycle occurs because we often do not understand the problem we are trying to solve. Depression can come from a number of sources and we need to educate ourselves before we can create the changes we need.

There are different kinds of depressions but they generally fall into two categories:

  • situational depressions like job loss or losing a friend that are temporary although painful
  • chronic forms of depression which is caused by life conditions.

Chronic depression arises when we have unresolved negative feelings, often as a result of our childhoods, that make us feel sad, bad and hopeless. Unfortunately, chronic depression can change the way our brain works and make it more difficult for us to get well.

Chronic depression can feel like an attack on our life force by making us feel that life is not worth living. So what can reiki do about all this?

How Reiki Helps Depression Symptoms

Reiki is a hands on healing technique that transmits universal energy from the reiki practitioner to the individual receiving the treatment. The practitioner applies hand positions on the body which passes the energy to the reiki client. The energy enters the body and goes to wherever it is needed.

This infusion of energy results in changes to the energy body of the person receiving the treatment. All illnesses including depression show up in the energy body. They show up as blocks to the natural flow of energy. Blocks to our energy can come from repressed feelings as well as poor food, water, sleep habits, and other lifestyle problems.

They can also come from stress as well as unprocessed grief and sadness. Think about how you feel under stress. You tighten up on the inside and the flow of energy in the body becomes constricted. That constriction impairs your functioning. Multiply that one stress incident by all the stress in your life, and you have seriously blocked energy that can create illness, including mental illnesses and depression.

Reiki Helps You Find Your Joy

Reiki puts us back in touch with our healthy flowing energy. When we experience it, it reminds us of who we are and how we can be healthy and joyful. Reiki energy enables a new healing energy to clear out blockages. When the constriction starts to clear, we feel lighter, more relaxed and more loving toward ourselves and others.

The history of reiki is full of stories about the healing of all sorts of conditions. Some heal very quickly. Others make take multiple sessions for the new energy to take hold and clear out blockages. One of reiki’s advantages it that it can be learned and then performed on the self. Many reiki masters perform daily self reiki to heal their blockages.

Receiving a reiki treatment can be a wonderful experience, putting you in touch with a happy part of yourself that you may not be aware of if you are depressed. Just finding and learning about your inner healer is a good way to get on the road out of depression.

Image Credit: Bellasante Spa, Boston, MA

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Unfreeze Those Feelings!

The HSPs 7 Paths To Reducing Sensitivity - HSP Health Blog

Source: Flickr

To a child all feelings may seem huge, since they feel so small – and are.

Children are very natural about their feelings. They experience them and let them go.

Unfortunately, it does not take long before we learn that our feelings are unwanted and inconvenient.

Then we start to reject them and hold them in with all the negative effects that brings.

What Happens To Our Feelings?

Our feelings become objectified. We learn to treat them like objects at a store, some unwanted and others preferred as demonstrated to us by our families and educators.

And so the stress starts. According to Yogi Amrit Desai, founder of Kripalu Yoga in a June, 2010 article in Natural AwakeningsHealing the Root Cause of Addiction with Ayurveda A Natural Cure for Unhealthy Dependence by Linda Sechrist,  

“It is important to recognize that most people don’t know the difference between tension and stress…

He observes that stressors—thoughts and reactions to our lifestyle, relationships, work environment and family life—are introduced through the ego mind. Emotionally charged thoughts and feelings of blame, shame or guilt then get metabolized into our biological body system. Stored in the form of toxins and neuro-glandular imbalances, these feelings create energy blocks that prevent the free flow of energy, or prana, the body’s self-healing wisdom.

Energy blocks may take the form of muscular tensions and weakness in liver, kidney and digestive functions. Gradual decline results in a progressive deterioration of biological processes and consequently can manifest in external symptoms of fatigue, fear, anxiety and insecurity.”

Essentially we are socialized to have certain emotions and reject others and our unwanted emotions then get stuck in our bodies and gradually make us sick.

Why Rejecting Feelings Is A Mistake

When we reject our feelings, we cannot own them and process them.

When we are processing our feelings, we take them in, accept them feel them and listen to them. It is called metabolism.

Metabolism comes from the greek word ” metabole” for change or transformation. At any given time as we interact with our world we are in the process of metabolism – of perceptions, thought, feelings, emotions as well as material substances such as food and water.  All forms of life engage in metabolism, from plants to humans.

When we are unable to metabolize a food it will clog our bodies. When we are unable to metabolize or process emotions, they will clog our system as well. Ideally we process all food and experiences each day so that we are in a state of flowing with life. If only it were that simple!

It is often not  possible to process all information and feelings when they occur. Some feelings can be part of a larger process.  The grieving process is a good example of that.  However, the most difficult situations are those where an acceptable arrangement is not possible – situations that are abusive, demeaning, and dehumanizing –  because the pain of these situations often does long term damage to the energy of the body, and takes a long time to heal.

Learning To Accept And Release Feelings

It can be useful to think of feelings as information.  When the feelings are the result of a past experience transferred onto the present, it is a sign that there is unfinished business in the past that must be dealt with. Another way of looking at it is that energy has become blocked in the body, it has not been metabolized. Under these circumstances it is our job to accept the feelings so that they can be released.

There are releasing practices available including meditation,and the energy healing practices of eft (emotional freedom technique) and reiki that help with processing emotions. Writing in a journaling has been widely used and can be effective.  Therapy groups have been helpful to many.  The more severe the experiences causing blocked energy the greater the need for therapeutic solutions.  The body has its wisdom and in some severely abusive situations it will “store” emotions to be processed at a later date if that is what is needed to survive.

Highly sensitive people and severely abused people need to be aware that they can accept and take charge of their healing process by finding therapeutic practices and groups that will let them forgive and let go of the past. Engaging in such practices helps minimize the potential for long term destructive addiction and therefore is valuable for all people.

For More Information:

Stress, Addiction And Weight



My Affirmations Aren’t Working!

 Technicolor Hug Creative Commons License photo credit: CarbonNYC

My Affirmations Aren’t Working!  What’s up with that?

Affirmations became popular with the birth of the human potential movement.  One of the perceptions of the human potential movement has been that limitations on happiness and achievement come from negative beliefs about ourselves. As a result, the human potential movement put a lot of attention on how we think about ourselves and what we believe about ourselves and why; one of the practices it developed to improve self worth was the use of affirmations. The general idea is that if you repeat affirmations often enough you will believe them.

The label “bad” has been used for a long time – centuries – to describe behavior that did not conform to group standards. Those standards are being questioned as we evolve beyond traditional societal structures. However, the labels of good and bad are not easy to get rid of.  Even if we eliminate the words from our vocabulary, our educational and other institutions rewards the “right” answer, picking winners and losers, which is a way of defining good and bad.

The labels of good and bad are also believed to shape an individuals self identity often with disastrous results. This recognition has led to increased efforts to change cultural conditioning because the labels good and bad are essentially simplistic and do not honor the magnificent complexity and potential of human beings.

A side effect of the effort to challenge the definitions of “bad” is a desire to transcend the difficult past of the human race.  So the “bad” label has been put under the microscope over the past fifty years as we have evolved to develop a more contextual or situation based way of thinking about behavior to improve how we relate to others as well as ourselves.

Affirmations probably developed as a result of exposure to Eastern medication practices and the use of mantras. Mantras have been used for thousands of years to help focus the mind and to shift our attention from an undesirable fixation to a better one.  It is a way of facilitating the act of “letting go: and developing more acceptance of ourselves, each other and the challenges of life. They have helped a lot of people.

There is a catch with affirmations.  They are not a quick fix and cannot help everyone equally.  I think it has become apparent that affirmations do not solve all problems. Even with the great effort that has been made in using them, they somehow miss the boat with some people.  I think the clue to explain it comes from energy healing practices and meditation.

My TM instructor told me that meditation works on the nervous system to release blocked energy. Blocked energy can have a number of causes: unresolved grief, poor health habits, and all types of abuse – physical, emotional, mental, sexual etc. In other words, energy can become trapped in the body until it is released. Blocked energy does not release easily.  There is usually a learning associated with it.  At a minimum the energy needs to be processed, and often it cannot be processed until we reach a new understanding.

Meditation and  energy practices like Reiki and EFT are ways to release blocked energy from a painful past. They bring loving energy into the body to create the conditions for the releasing of old pain.  Highly sensitive people are known to have more abuse in their backgrounds than other people, so affirmations pay provide some benefit, but long term energy healing practices will probably offer the best hope.