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Reiki for Coping with Loss

Article by Ashwita Goel, Reiki Master

One of the most traumatic events that can happen in life is to have to lose a loved one. Whether it is you who have lost a loved one, or you are trying to help someone who did, Reiki can help very deeply. Sometimes, the end of a relationship also triggers the same reaction as a loved one’s death, and the same process will help in these cases too.

While everyone experiences loss differently, what they go through can be broadly classified into a few stages. The first reaction when someone close moves on, is denial and isolation – this is a step taken by the mind to protect itself from the sudden shock. During this phase the person might also want to be left alone, and they are best left alone if that is what they need. If you wish to help a person that is going through this phase, you could flood them with energy, but do nothing more.

When the denial starts to fade, the person comes face to face with the deep pain of personal loss, and anger can set in. The anger can be directed at the deceased, family and friends, or even complete strangers. If this person is generally quite reasonable, he or she can feel guilty about feeling angry towards others for no fault of theirs, and this can cause even more anger. This is a good time to gently ask them if they would be interested in healing.

In an attempt to regain control, people often get into a phase of regret and bargaining. The ‘if only’s seem to take over, and this is the phase where people try to contact the deceased to somehow bring them back into their life, if only energetically. If this is the phase during which clients come to me to reconnect with dead people, I usually discourage them as this can prevent them from moving on.

When reality really sets in, and the realisation sinks in that some things really are out of our control, it leads to depression. A person may or may not reach the final stage, acceptance depending on whether their pain is healed or suppressed. Ordinarily, a person needs at least 6 months of time to get back to normal.

These are not necessarily separate stages, merely a summary of the emotions people feel when they lose a loved one. In many cases, people may feel all of these things at once, overwhelming them and leaving them disoriented and confused.

To heal this pain, frequent full body Reiki healing is a must, as energies often fluctuate wildly during mourning.

To cope with loss yourself

It is important to come to terms with the fact that you are going to feel a spate of emotions that you might not want to feel. At every stage of mourning, it is important to remind yourself that ‘this happens’, and is normal for anyone (in a similar position) to go through what you are going through. It is important not to resist the pain or emotions that come up.

When the experience of grief is extreme, try tuning in to the body – extreme emotions often manifest as a sensation in the body. Place your hands on the part of the body that is hurting, and request Reiki to heal the pain.

To help another cope with loss

If you’re trying to help someone you love, heal yourself first. If seeing them in pain brings you tremendous pain, then it will be hard to accept them for what they are in that moment, and you might add to their problems. It is very important to bring in to your awareness your own emotions about your loved one’s trauma, and heal that first.

It is also important to reassure them that whatever they are feeling is ok. They could be going through a lot, maybe being unable to function normally, maybe feeling that nobody understands them, or feeling that they are having to put up a fake face for the benefit of people.

Irrespective of what they are feeling, compassion needs to be on the forefront of your healing. Acceptance is the quickest path to healing, and if the healer falls into the trap of trying to ‘fix’ them, then they might need more time. Ease them into their pain.


All the symbols can help deeply during the mourning process.

  • The distant healing symbol can subconsciously bring them in touch with the energy of the deceased, thereby reducing their pangs of emptiness.
  • Using the emotional healing symbol generously will help heal the pain and trauma they are going through.
  • The power symbol will help them reconnect with their inner power.

When they are ready, it can also be useful to remove any cords that might exist between them and the deceased.

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Ashwita Goel
Ashwita Goel

Having learned Meditation as a child, Ashwita incorporated Reiki into her life during her early teens. After a decade of witnessing the magic Reiki, she felt compelled to take up Reiki professionally, and ended her corporate career in 2007, taking up Reiki full-time. She eventually incorporated EFT, hypnotherapy and past life therapy into her work. Apart from her healing work, she teaches Reiki and meditation, and her book ‘Healing Through Reiki’ is available on Amazon. You can connect with her through Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Reiki.Bangalore,
her website http://www.reiki-bangalore.com/ or visit her blog http://www.ashwita.com/zen/

{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Mayra March 3, 2015, 6:54 pm

    Thanks for the article Ashwita. I can very well relate to the stages you have mentioned as I am myself coping with the loss due to end of relationship for the last five years. Despite the psychiatric treatment and professional Reiki healing, I have not been able to come out of it. I try to heal myself but all in vain.
    The heartache does not seem to leave me and life looks difficult to cope with. I really wonder why some relationships leave us completely shattered that we can’t move on or accept the reality. Kindly throw light on this. Thanks again !

    • Ashwita March 4, 2015, 9:53 am

      Dear Mayra,

      I often compare this situation to that of a person stuck within a spool of barbed wire. The harder you try to get out, the harder it is to actually get out, and the harder it is for anyone else to help you.

      A few things to keep in mind, which will be very helpful – if you are in such deep mourning, it wasn’t love, but an emotional addiction. Love leaves you nourished, but when the substance (or person) you’re addicted to, is inaccessible, it gives you severe withdrawal symptoms, those that take years to remove. Once you bring this understanding into your heart, it will help tremendously to let go mentally of the idea that ‘true love’ has died.

      Second, very important, is to let go of the desire to be ok. Surrender to the pain. Let the pain consume you. This does not mean endless days of crying and self pity, I am talking of going deeper. Really feel the pain, the humiliation and the broken dreams this ‘death’ brought in your life, and surrender to those facts of life. This has happened, and nothing will change it.

      Depression happens because you are in resistance to this fact.

      Third, work with allowing yourself to love yourself a bit more. It is easy to hate yourself with the incapacity to move on, the mistakes you might have made in the relationship, and other similar things.

      And lastly, here’s a video that will help you move on with your feelings. http://cosmicairport.com/cosmic_video05_alchemising.html Feel free to contact me if you need any more help.

      Love & Light,

  • Mayra March 6, 2015, 6:59 pm

    Thanks Ashwita for the reply, for explaining it so beautifully and for understanding me. Your reply has filled me sense of relief and hope that I can be my normal self again. I am trying hard to accept the reality, to love myself and to surrender to the pain. Will contact you through email if I need further help. Thanks once again. Reiki love and hugs to you.

  • Gail Hill March 18, 2017, 1:56 am

    Ashwita, I have a close friend who is going through the loss of her husband who committed suicide. I am trying to find the best way to help her with Reiki healing.
    This article seems the closest I can find to what I might need. Can you suggest anything else that might help in my Reiki treatment with her?
    As far as cord cutting; can I do this with her? Or is that just a process one does on oneself?
    Please advise.

    Thank you,

    • Ashwita Goel March 18, 2017, 3:58 am

      I’m grateful I could be of use in such a difficult situation Gail. She’s very lucky she has you helping her through with this, I cannot imagine it to be easy in any aspect. She needs to understand that the pain WILL be there, and that she mustn’t resist the pain when it comes. I would suggest regular healings for 6 months if you really want to help her through the whole process. I’m not sure cord cutting is a good idea at this point, because cutting cords without doing the inner work can lead to the person forming them again with someone else, and considering she’s in a pretty weak spot right now, it may not be totally safe. Best to let your intuition guide you here – Reiki knows best.

      Above everything I would suggest that you truly leave the healing to Reiki. There is so little we understand about people and these intense processes, and nothing can take care of them like Reiki can. If you can heal her in total surrender, you will also receive guidance IF she needs any assistance from you. Good luck!

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