Article by Angie Webster
Many of those who are drawn to the path of healing arts are also highly empathic. Being empathic has a range of meanings. They may be very aware of the needs and feelings of others and thus be very caring. Or they may actually feel the emotions of those around them, perhaps to the point that they have difficulty distinguishing when the emotions are their own or someone else’s. Many empaths also feel the physical pains and illnesses of others. Again, many quite often have a difficult time separating another’s symptoms from their own.
Empaths feel the world around them. It may be that this is why many are drawn to healing. They can feel where there is a need. This can be very useful in the healing arts. It can also cause difficulty. Seeing or feeling where targeted healing needs to be applied during a healing session is very helpful. Empath skills also help during scanning and clearing. Yet when an empath so deeply feels what they are trying to heal that they can’t separate it from themselves, they begin to weaken themselves and block their own energy channels. It no longer helps their healing, it begins to hinder it.
Everyone wants to feel well. And all healers want to be effective and helpful at what they do. Unfortunately, I think as empaths, we get the idea that we are meant to suffer along with those we help in order for our work to be effective. That somehow if we take on the suffering of our clients or even the suffering of the world, we will be helping. This is an error in thinking. It is an error that limits us as healers and also makes us feel ill and leaves us carrying lots of physical and emotional pain.
A big key to healing is to not resist what you are trying to heal and at the same time not pull it into yourself or absorb it. When we can simply accept the issues our clients have from a place of non-judgement and love, we can let healing energy flow freely. That shifts it. We don’t need to take it on ourselves and suffer.
We also don’t need to create resistance against whatever we are directing healing toward. When we see it as a problem that needs to be resisted, we create blocks in ourselves and we are also fighting what is a part of our client’s reality in this moment. The most loving and healing thing to do is to love and accept where someone is—always. Whatever they are experiencing is a part of their path and will help them to reach the next part. Your part in the path is to hold space as they walk their path, not to walk their path for them or to change their direction on the path. Love, accept and send healing. Allow the process to unfold as it needs to. This leaves space for the client to find love and acceptance for themselves as well.
It can be challenging to learn to separate your own energy from that of others when you are a healer and an empath. It has certainly been my biggest challenge as a healer so far. It has been a practice more than anything. Learning to appreciate the path of others, heal my own inner wounds and feel less resistance to that which I see as a “problem” and simply let healing flow where it is needed has helped. It can make for a very strong healer when you can make use of your empath skills without letting them overwhelm you.
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Angie Webster made a significant contribution to the Reiki community, with a particular focus on Animal Reiki, which she had a deep affection for. As a knowledgeable Reiki Master Teacher and Author, she conducted online courses on energy healing, herbalism, flower essences, and personal growth.
She is the author of “Animal Reiki: How it Heals, Teaches & Reconnects Us with Nature” and “Reiki from A to Z”. Currently, Angie has decided to retire from her professional life to devote more time to her health, family, and the little joys of life.