#BeingReiki #1000DayChallenge—Day 419: Those Little Moments of Goodness

With all the violence and hate dialogue that surrounds us in the news, It’s easy to feel like the world is collapsing. Most of us are scared, angry and frustrated.

Yet there is also goodness going around.

People who find your wallet or give you a smile that makes your day better.

Do we notice them? Or do we let these moments go because we’re overwhelmed?

Are we filled with so much worry that we have no space left for anything else?

That’s why it’s so important to have a personal practice that allows us to let go of negative feelings and create space—space will make us feel lighter. Space will give us more clarity.  Space will allow us to move things around and keep tidying up until we are left only with what works for us.

It can be meditation, tai chi or yoga. For me, it’s Reiki practice. Every time I practice, I free some precious inches of space. When I get a session, I free even more—a precious gift in a crowded inner world.

What is your practice? What creates space in your life?

I would love to hear about it,

Love,

Nathalie

#BeingReiki #1000DayChallenge—Day 329: New roads

I love sessions. But as the days pass and I advance slowly (oh, so slowly) on this road, what I'm enjoying most are the very simple breathing/meditations. Their power to ground, recharge and bring clarity never stop to amaze me. 

To explore this area further, I signed up for Frans Stiene's virtual practice group, where every month he introduces us to breathing exercises/meditations inspired by the original Japanese practice. 

Not only am I enjoying thoroughly each session, but I've started to draw some of the exercises we do. I've been struggling to find words to express these experiences, but it seems that if I let my hand express it for me, the result is a lot more fluid and charming.

As with sessions, from now on, it seems I have to let my hands do the talking for me. 

Purifying breath.

Purifying breath.

#Being Reiki: #1000DayChallenge — Day 24: On growing roots

—By Nathalie J.

I have been working on "grounding" for the last few days.
As you may recall, I'm an air person who fears the constrains of grounding.

However, I've come to internalize that without proper grounding, you can't really have a strong practice—self-doubt and external criticism would constantly make you feel off center. 

To my surprise I'm finding my grounding meditations fascinating... and even enlightening.

As an example: during one meditation I was visualizing these amazing roots borrowing deep into the earth to get nutrients and stability... and then an image popped out: I felt the ground responded to the energy and that these virtual roots helped the earth keep its integrity, its place in the whole and its life—reminding me of the #Reiki principle, "There are no givers, gift or receivers."

Now I'm actually excited to keep on going. 

If you have a lovely grounding modality, don't be shy! Share it! I would love to experiment more  in this area. 

Thx and namaste!

#BeingReiki: #1000DayChallenge—Day 9: Back to Basics

—By Nathalie J.

As part of the requirements for my Level 3 certificate, I’m to observe a Reiki Level 1 training, which is given in 3 classes over 21 days.

During the classes, I am not allowed to talk, do any of the exercises or socialize much. I am supposed to observe in silence (a challenge in itself) as a group of ten very different people go from having very little idea about what is a Reiki practice to discovering the power of their own hands to relax their body and quiet their minds.

The transformation of their attitude and the glow in their faces was beautiful to see. It was a gift in itself. But more importantly, reconnecting with the simplicity of basic hands on self-treatment, observe its power, was a great reminder that Reiki practice is not about levels— it’s about practice. 

Namasté!

When things go awry: Just BREATHE

Breath is the bridge between the body and the mind. Regulate breath, and the body and mind will follow.

There are moments when things happens. You get so upset you get tunel vision, you start hyper ventilating and...yes, you do/say/write something stupid. Believe me, I know. I've been there. Not one. Not ten, but hundreds of times. I used to work in advertising, an industry where things got awfully bad, awfully fast and for awfully stupid reasons: a celebrity didn't like the hem of a dress, a nail got chipped, your boss hated the font you used on a presentation.

Tired of so much drama creating havoc in my body, I tried loads of methods to calm down quickly. Many sucked, but these 3 simple breathing exercises really helped me regain a certain sense of calm and balance amidst emotional chaos. And the best, they work even if you don't have a meditation or Reiki practice!

BREATHING IN CALM
Sit down with a straight back, place one hand on your belly and the other on your chest. Close your eyes and inhale deeply through the nose as you let your diaphragm expand outward, like an inflated balloon. Let your breath spiral downwards through your chest into your ribs, filling up your lungs. If your mind starts to wanter, keep returning to the sound of your breath. Exhale deeply through the mouth, guiding the navel towards the spine and release. Repeat this for 3 to 5 minutes. 

RELAXING BREATH OR THE 4-7-8 BREATHING EXERCISE
This one is from Dr. Weil and it works wonders: it's like a natural tranquilizer for the nervous system. On the plus side, it's super simple and can be done anywhere, On the con side, the whooshing sound it creates may want to make you scramble for privacy.
Sit with your back straight. Place the tip of your tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind your upper front teeth, and keep it there through the entire exercise. 
Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound.
Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of FOUR.
Hold your breath for a count of SEVEN.
Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of EIGHT.
This is one breath, now repeat the cycle 3 more times for a total of 4 breaths.
If you have trouble holding your breath, speed the exercise up but keep the ration of 4:7:8.

BEE RELAXED
This breathing exercise is called Brahmari Pranayama. Brahmari in sanskrit means bee (you'll see why soon) and it's utilized to relieve stress. 
Choose a comfortable seating posture. 
With your index fingers, close your ears.
Hold your elbows up at shoulders level and close your eyes. 
Inhale deeply through your nose.
Exhale through your mouth while creating a humming sound like a bee (come on, don't take yourself so seriously) until your lungs empty.
Inhale again through your nose and repeat this breathing exercise for 10-15 mins.

 

Nathalie Jaspar is the co-founder at Natky927 Wellness Collective, a group of professional Reiki practitioners supported by life coaches, clinical herbalists and yoga teachers in New York City and Miami. 

Photo credit: Ashley Rose via Flickr