Here are some common comments I often hear when I ask someone if they practice daily Reiki self-treatment:
“It’s more powerful when I get a session, I can feel more.”
“I like giving Reiki to others better.”
“I don’t have time to do it, I’m too busy.”
“I don’t feel anything.”
This doesn’t exactly make a great case for making a daily commitment to practice, right? Wrong. Daily practice has both short and long-term, cumulative benefits that transcend what we may or may not feel in the moment. If we examine ourselves over time, over many days or weeks of daily self-practice, we will likely notice a great difference. We have to examine our approach, our hopes and our expectations, instead of merely what we feel in the moment.
How can you tell if you had a good Reiki self-treatment? If you did it, I can guarantee it was good. It’s a practice. It will rarely be whatever your idea is of perfect.
I have a daily practice, and it ebbs and flows like any relationship. Sometimes I like practicing, sometimes it seems boring, sometimes I’ve felt like nothing happened and I’ve wondered if I’ve wasted my time. I’ve asked myself, “What happened? Why can’t I feel things all the time? Maybe I need to find something else? Am I doing something wrong, or is this just not the right thing?”
I’ve learned, with the help of my teacher, to practice through these questions. Not to ignore them, but to practice through them, to bring them to myself as I place my hands on myself. To just be with whatever is happening, or not happening. To let it come up and to let it go. And get up and do it again the next day.
When I first started practicing I wanted to know if it worked? My teacher said that I could only know if I practiced. She explained, “Give Reiki practice a try. Be like Usui, practice every day for 21 days, and see what happens.” Only then can you see if it really works. You have to be like Nike; just do it.”
Those first 21 days of practice were boring. I didn’t feel anything like I’d hoped or expected. I didn’t notice anything particular during my treatments. I thought it didn’t work. All the while, my life changed radically. Before Reiki, I thought of healing as physical. By the end of the 21 days I found levels of relaxation, rejuvenation, creativity, and emotional balance that I hadn’t experienced since childhood. It never occurred to me that spending daily time by myself, free of distraction, could be helpful in and of itself.
Over the course of 16 years of practice, I’ve discovered that periods of perceived boredom typically precede a new positive change, awareness or phase of growth. Like deposits in an interest bearing bank account, the cumulative results are profound, although the individual deposits may seem inconsequential.
It’s nice to come to a place where I can accept and love the journey for the journey’s sake, and to remember that each time I practice I come back to myself. I’ve learned to go with the flow and trust the process. I often think that healing isn’t something that happens to us, but rather what’s naturally there, what’s left when we drop all of our armor, resistances, and defenses against our resonance with all that is.
We live in a fast-paced world. It’s as if we’re all going along together on the moving sidewalk at the airport. The pace is accelerated, but we don’t notice it’s not natural until we step off. Although self-Reiki practice may not always seem exciting, it is a daily dose of slowing down, coming back to yourself, recalibrating, and resetting. It trains us, slowly, to be more at ease within ourselves and with our life. Please, practice through your ups and downs, your ebbs and flows, and your busy mind. …Let me know how it goes.
–Kimberly Fleisher, RMT, M.Ed