Shamanic Soul Loss and Sensitive People

Photo Credit: AdobeStock / kichigin19

Photo Credit: AdobeStock / kichigin19


Sensitive people & empaths are amazing

As sensitive people, we feel so much from the world and people around us. While we are still learning to create clear and loving energetic boundaries, most of us rely on a host of energetic survival tools in an effort to feel less unpleasant things from the world around us.

It is crazy to think about the ways we contort our energy in an effort to try to maintain emotional autonomy. We leave our body meaning we separate our energy from our physical body, we shrink our energy in efforts to avoid mingling the edges of our energy with those around us we do not fancy, or we merge with others in an effort to understand what we are feeling from them. Some of us create big energetic walls when we don’t feel empowered to create true boundaries. You can find the complete illustrated guide to the survival spectrum in my book, Energetic boundaries 101.

But all of these energetic gymnastics also create separation between our energy and our body. In shamanic terms, this is called Soul loss.


Soul loss is when aspects of our soul, our vital life essence splits off and separates from our body and becomes inaccessible to us and our daily life. 


Within the shamanic perspective, soul loss is one of the main culprits for the creation of illness and emotional imbalance. Our soul can splinter from the wholeness of our being and separate from our body for short periods of time, following stress and trauma, then naturally return when the cause of the splintering has shifted. Parts of our soul can even remain separate from us for years or even throughout our life time until we are able and ready to heal the root causes of the separation. 

Soul loss is chronic in our modern culture and equally so for the sensitive, empathic ones of this world. Given how much time many of us spend out of our body, disconnected from those around us, or even hiding out from the world while we are recovering from the symptoms of over stimulation, it is no wonder that many of us energy sensitive and empathic folks, also have chronic signs of soul loss.


Some of the signs of soul loss include:

♥  Easily becoming overwhelmed and anxious, even when we are around those we care about

♥  Difficulty feeling our own sense of energetic and emotional autonomy
♥  A lack of gusto and passion for life

♥  Feelings of being separate from our life or as though reality and life is moving at a faster or          different speed than us

♥  Difficulty cultivating joy, playfulness, creativity, and positive healthy change in our life

♥  A lack of connection with our dreams, spirit and soulful passions 

♥  Fear and inability expressing our self with voice, dance, and movement, and creativity

♥   An inability to build and sustain healthy, balanced and loving relationships


Soul loss is an effort to survive

For many of us sensitive people, we have splintered off, aspects of our self in efforts to survive, to fit in, hide our gifts, or to turn down the volume on the overwhelming barrage of emotions from those around us, starting as early in life as infancy.  Many of us still, as adults rely on the splintering up our soul daily in efforts to protect our self or to compartmentalize aspects of our being from those around us.

With patterns of separation from our own essence running so deep, and chronically it seems in addition to receiving healing for soul loss, a large part of healing process is to also re-member and relearn how to be in the world and interact with others, animals and nature from a place of wholeness without leaving, shrinking, hiding and separating from our life essence. 


An exercise in wholeness

In my energetic boundary workshops we often work with an exercise that helps us learn how to meet someone, say hello and shake their hand, all while, breathing to be in our body, (rather than to get out), and remaining centered without relying on the survival spectrum skills listed at the start of this article. It can take many tries to do this! 

It is an interesting exercise that we can practice every time we meet someone new, whether or not we shake their hand. An interesting twist is to try this exercise when we meet people and dogs walking, or at the store with checkout clerks and explore what we need to shift in order to be resourced enough to stay present and meet and interact with another being as an equal and our vital life essence intact. 

More on shamanic healing

If you are moved by some of the symptoms of soul loss listed here and are called to receive some healing with me, you can learn about how I work with shamanism and energetic boundaries here.


About Joanna

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.