Shamanism isn't a novelty, it is vital self-care
When you listen inward, what aspects of yourself feel under-nourished in this moment?
When you tune inward can you sense that vital creative aspect of yourself that gets put on the back burner when you are at work? Or that tender intuitive aspect of yourself that gets tucked away when life feels too full? Or perhaps you can sense an aspect of yourself that feels so hungry for the chance to be seen and witnessed and needs permission to come out of hiding?
A Beautiful template for energetic self-care
In the years of working with earth-based shamanic practices, one of the qualities of the work I personally love the most is in the ways it offers such a beautiful template to do our inner work. Rituals to shed and release aspects of ourselves and life we have outgrown, inner spirit-journeys to reclaim forgotten inner gifts and ceremony to celebrate rites personal rites of passages.
There are many energetic modalities out there and for me why I love and work with shamanic practices is they are rooted and lend so beautifully to energetic self-care. In that with some guidance and practice, anyone can journey and have direct, personal contact with Spirit and that which they consider sacred.
Self-care and preventative care for Spirit and Soul
Before self-care was became a popular buzz word, I was just staring my professional healing practice as a massage therapist and Reiki practitioner. At the time, for most of the population, the idea one could take care of their body in ways that felt good before they got sick was unheard of. Looking back, it is crazy to think about how massage then for the general public was viewed as novelty reserved for the super rich and over indulgent, with most people waiting to gift themselves the self-care they needed until their birthday or mother's day came around, if even at all! I still cherish the countless post-session conversations I had with clients about ways we could stretch and evolve our ideas of what self-care and body-tending could be. Wonderfully and thankfully, massage and even Reiki have gone mainstream and I am grateful to the conurbations I made to that transition over the course of my 22 years as a massage therapist.
Now, nearly ten years into my shamanic healing and animal communication practice it is interesting to me to witness the same habits towards self-care and preventive care for spirit, soul and our energy, as I witnessed in those early days of offering massage. Especially, because we all know we need to tend to these aspects of ourselves and we know we feel better when we do. But much like how most of us approached massage therapy years ago, with our energetic and spirit care, we wait until we have been hurt or are in some kind of crisis to give ourselves what we need to feel better.
It is time we evolve these habits too!
5 gifts shamanism offers to our self-care
As weird and indescribable as shamanism may feel to us sometimes, the practices and modalities it offers us for our self-care for spirit, soul and energy are undeniable. Here are a my top five favorite ways shamanism provides us with self-care and energetic preventive care...
1. Shamanism helps us maintain a connection to our core-selves. Shamanism offers us the inner listening skills we need to locate, tend and nourish the aspects of ourselves that are chronically left out of our life, our relationships and our self that otherwise are not given the chance to be seen, heard loved and to belong.
2. Shamanism helps us maintain connection to that which we consider sacred. Shamanism offers us tangible ways to remain in connection with that which we consider sacred in our every day life, and to remain in connection with the aspects of ourselves that need that connection to sacred to feel whole, nourished and resourced.
3. Shamanism helps us remain resourced and graceful in transformations. Shamanism offers practices and tools to help us gracefully, harmoniously and mindfully transform the relationships with things we are in process of outgrowing, such as outdated ideas, concepts and life stages.
4. Shamanism helps us remain in balance and resourced. Shamanism offers us tools and inner resources to remain rooted, grounded and centered, even during those times we feel we need to run or hide or exist with our tail between our legs.
5. Shamanism helps us nourish ourselves during natural cycles of life. Shamanism offers us tools and practices to celebrate, mark, tend to, honor and nourish ourselves during times of growth, unfurling, blooming, ripening, releasing and letting go.
Time to tend to Spirit & Soul?
Even when life feels like smooth sailing, I recommend monthly sessions for sensitive people and those who work within the field of the healing arts as energetic preventive care. As with ongoing care, we are more centered, less likely to pick up unwanted energy and emotional stress from others and much more likely to feel resourced enough to be the creative, wild and connected humans we want to be.
And for those times you are working through something “big”, or life has offered you a bigger than normal challenge in which case I recommend coming in every 2-3 weeks to support you in re-balancing yourself and digging for the gifts your current challenge is offering you. You can learn more about my shamanic offerings and session for yourself or sign up for a class because like massage therapy, even as mystical and wonderful as shamanism is, we only feel the benefits when we actually do it!
Joanna is the author of Energetic Boundaries 101. She is a shamanic practitioner, animal communicator and mentor. She works, writes lives and tends to the important matters of spirit-energy with playful, transparency and honesty.
She works with clients all over the globe from her healing studio that is lovingly nestled between Mt Baker and the Salish sea, in Bellingham, WA.