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Emotional Detox – Is it Me, You or Everyone?

After doing a Reiki treatment with a client or a group share with other practitioners, if we feel a surge of negative emotions, or become affected by emotions we don’t normally associate with Reiki – anger, sadness, frustration, anxiety – it’s easy to panic!  Reiki is associated with feelings of love, peace and calm so immediately we begin to question, what is going on?

These feelings can be caused by three different explanations; it’s useful to be able to distinguish between the three to stop yourself spinning your wheels.

It’s Me

Often Reiki creates detox in the body, you know that if you Reiki yourself this can be quite common to finish your Reiki treatment and feel worse or more emotional than when you started – obviously if you are doing self-Reiki, it is unlikely to be caused by anyone else so it is a good time to reflect and contemplate.  When you feel the emotions, however, do not spend too much time worrying about where or why they are there – this worrying is creating even more stress!  The surge of emotions may simply be leaving the body, like a physical detox.  So just like a physical detox, you nurture yourself, give yourself tender loving care, and gently allow the emotions to leave the body.  Do you need to know the cause of the emotions or what belief or trauma caused them?  Probably not, often releasing emotions is all that is required.  Allow the phase to pass, just being gentle and kind to yourself (resisting the urge to berate and question yourself) will be incredible healing.

It’s You

Many Reiki practitioners begin to find they have a great deal of empathy when it comes to healing others, this is part of the reason why we are drawn to Reiki in the first place, a desire to help others.  Unfortunately with desire comes attachment, and this attachment is what opens you to the possibility of picking up emotions from others.  Important to note, if you heal with total detachment – it is impossible to pick up anything from another person.  There are many myths flying around about how people can be negatively affected by others, and many Reiki Masters teach protection techniques that tend to reinforce this idea that healing others can be a dangerous game.  In my experience, the only time I have felt a negative transference, is in those moments I have wanted to see a difference, I have wanted to heal this person or I have wanted to get acknowledgement from this person that Reiki worked for them.  These desires are what open my energy to them and I take on their negative energy as a sub-conscious way of fulfilling my desires.  It is hard to be detached, but the way I do it is very simple: firstly I set the intention before every healing for Reiki to help them in whatever way is to their highest good.  Second during the healing session itself I stay present but I don’t wish anything for them, I simply observe what is happening but I am careful not to judge it or wish it different.  Thirdly when I complete the session I disconnect by brushing my hands together or washing them with the intention of disconnecting.

It’s the World

When I first entered the ‘holistic’ world I found it very amusing to watch new age types blah on about the energies of the world and how affected they were by the solar flares, Mercury retrograde (whatever that means!) and all the hype around 2012 ‘new energies’ – I still entertain these claims with extreme caution, but I also have to admit that often when I feel my life has entered some kind of roller coaster and I can’t find any obvious reason, it is quite interesting how it often coincides with some global energy explanation.  So to this extent I am more wary of laughing it all off, and more likely to give myself a break if I feel a surge of emotions for no reason.  I have also found it quite amazing how, during Reiki share, an entire group of us will be feeling the same way and am often reminded that we are all connected so what affects us globally will of course affect us individually.  I am reminded of a friend of mine who woke up screaming and terrified of being buried in tons of debris in the middle of the night in Melbourne only to realize when she woke up the next day and turned on the news that she had subconsciously experienced the twin towers 9-11 disaster all the way in New York at the exact time it happened.  When we become more connected, we are also more affected, so it’s a good reminder to give yourself a break and sit back and relax, as often it’s not you or me, but everyone!

And finally

Remember that negative emotions are simply the flip side of positive emotions; you cannot have one without the other – that is why we manifest in the first place!  Without the experience of anger, frustration, anxiety, how would we know we experience love, peace and calm?  When these negative emotions grip us, it is often enough simply to acknowledge and thank them as they show us the joy of our entire emotional spectrum.

Have you had an interesting detox experience with Reiki?  Share it with us and what you learnt!


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