What is Reiki and How Can It Make You Calmer?
WHAT IS REIKI?
Reiki is a Japanese healing method involving a gentle transfer of “life force energy” from a practitioner to the client. Reiki promotes deep relaxation, wellness, clarity, focus, and personal and spiritual growth. Many people have heard this term before, as it becomes more and more mainstream in our culture, yet may still be unsure of the exact meaning. The practice of Reiki is not affiliated with any religion or spiritual practice and is currently practiced by an estimated four million people worldwide. Reiki is administered with the practitioner’s hands just above or lightly placed on the recipient’s clothed body in prescribed hand positions.
ARE THE BENEFITS OF REIKI PROVEN?
As people are seeking alternative and complementary healing methods outside of, or in addition to, traditional Western medicine, Reiki has been studied clinically and incorporated into medical treatment protocols for patients in hospitals, such as Johns-Hopkins, New York Presbyterian, UCLA Medical Center, hospices, and nursing homes all around the country.
THE 5 PRINCIPLES OF REIKI
Just for today, I will not anger.
Just for today, I will not worry.
Just for today, I will be grateful for all my blessings.
Just for today, I will work with honesty and integrity.
Just for today, I will be kind to all living things.
~Dr. Mikao Usui, Reiki Founder
REIKI AND MILITARY SPOUSE STRESS
I discovered Reiki in the fall of 2014 after a stressful cross-country PCS and I knew my unhealthy coping mechanisms needed to change. As a Marine Corps spouse and mom to one child and two fur children that has dealt with multiple cross-country moves, frequent deployments, a stressful commute through the crowded DC area, and suddenly facing devastating fertility issues, I had literally reached the end of my ability to cope and manage my stress in a healthy way. Unfortunately, alcohol had become my one and only stress reliever. I needed to change and I needed a new, effective method of relaxation and stress management.
As a registered nurse, I was first exposed to the concept of Reiki healing during nursing school, as it was, and still is, being used by nurses and volunteer practitioners at the University of Arizona Medical Center Oncology units.
I also practice holistic skincare as a licensed esthetician and have always been drawn to more natural healing methods. I had dabbled in yoga, acupuncture, and various forms of massage during times of previous stress. Despite my slight skepticism about how and if Reiki could help me, I began receiving regular Reiki treatment by a wonderful Reiki master in Northern Virginia. I was so impressed with the results that I quickly chose to pursue both my Level I and II Reiki practitioner certifications, in order to help other women, especially my fellow military spouses, experience deep relaxation and stress relief in a gentle, natural way.
I can now say, five years later, that Reiki has literally changed my life. I have been able to endure the continuous ups and downs of the active duty military lifestyle with more grace and emotional stability than I ever would have imagined possible before Reiki came into my life. It is now my absolute honor to share this healing gift with other military spouses who are trying their hardest to cope with whatever the military has handed them.
HOW TO FIND A PRACTITIONER
If you think Reiki might be something you would like to try experiencing yourself, I recommend first visiting the International Association of Reiki Professional’s website and use the locator tool to see if there is a trained professional in your area. Many massage therapists incorporate Reiki healing into their treatments, so checking your local massage school would be another excellent way to find someone near you.
WILL REIKI INTERFERE WITH OTHER WELLNESS TECHNIQUES OR MEDICAL TREATMENT?
Reiki can be a wonderful addition to a yoga, meditation, and/or mindful breathing practice if you’re already using any of these wellness techniques. It won’t interfere with any traditional medical treatment you may currently be receiving.
TAKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL
If you try Reiki and find you love the stress reduction, calm, and centered energy that Reiki brings into your life, you might consider obtaining your own Reiki Level I certification. This one-day training covers the fundamentals of Reiki healing and allows you to perform your own Reiki treatment on yourself, anytime and anyplace, when you need a moment of support and balancing.
I practice self-Reiki at least once per week, and sometimes every day when life is getting complicated, or stressful, or it’s PCS season!
Laura is a proud Marine Corps spouse, mom, Reiki II practitioner, licensed esthetician, and registered nurse. She has been practicing holistic esthetics for 15 years and incorporated Reiki energy healing into her treatment room five years ago as a way to enhance her clients’ relaxation and stress relief. She is on a mission to offer new and effective forms of support for her fellow military spouses, especially during times of stress and transition, after experiencing the profound effect Reiki had on her own abilities to cope with the active duty lifestyle. She offers in-person appointments in addition to distance Reiki sessions and virtual skin care consultations for clients not local to her current duty station.