What's up with boundaries lately? They seem to be and have been the major topic in conversation with my friends over the last six months. It feels like a joke now, because underneath every personal problem I face, it's all coming back to boundaries. "Oh, aha!" I say to myself, "This is another opportunity to assert my boundaries, which is so easy for us all, right?"
Well, joking aside as an energy healer, I've found that the issue of boundaries has gotten very real for me. I am an empathic person, and I'm sure many of you are too. In fact, the more we get in touch with our bodies and health and our emotions, the more "sensitive" we are to toxins, to yelling on the street, to pollution, to others' deep and dark emotional states.
My empathic nature shows up in full force when I work with clients. I began to notice (through trial and error and asking questions of clients) that almost exactly 24 hours before a session, I will actually be sent my client's emotions. Pretty much like clockwork, I will feel intense bouts of anger or anxiety and spend much of the day getting myself back into balance. This happens after a session too, when much has been released: the energy can linger with the practitioner.
This begs an important question: What is yours and what is mine? Why are boundaries coming up for me and my friends right now at the ripe young age of 26? I believe that many #millennials and individuals early in their career find themselves demarcating their boundaries with fainter and fainter lines at this phase in their lives.
Do any of the following situations sound familiar?
- Sure, I can stay an extra two hours. Just don't fire me, please!
- Yeah, I can come to that party even though I haven't slept in three days.
- You never call but want to see me at two in the morning? Um, sure.
- Oh, you don't want to pay me for the next seven weeks? That's fine.
- Yes! I mean, you NEED me, right?
If you're a person who works with other people (probably most of us), you are susceptible to energies that aren't yours and it's very important for you to protect your light and magic. This is not a way of asserting your superiority or saying "Oh my energy is more clean than yours." Believe me: we've all got enough funky energy on our own.
Instead, it's a way to hold space for someone else and for yourself, to be able to be grounded and listen to what that person needs to communicate without drinking it up.
So, does your juju feel out of whack? Have you been a shoulder for too many people lately? Is mercury retrograde getting to you? Luck feel off? Motor skills weird? Emotions erratic? Here are some ways to clear your energy and assert your boundaries, because you deserve it. I call it "how to throw out other people's garbage" (with love, of course):
How To Throw Out Other People's "Garbage"
1. Get to know the power of sea salt and baking soda.
Salt is one of my favorite energy cleansers. Used through the ages for purification, salt water is incredibly powerful. I recommend putting a container of sea salt and or baking soda in your shower. When it's shower (or bath!) time, put the salt on your hands and move it over your body (I often touch different chakra points while doing this, asking for each to balance). You can think of the person whose energy you may have picked up and send them light and love. Then affirm (out loud or in your head), "With this salt, I purify my body. I release anything that isn't mine." If you're in need of more heavy duty cleansing or relaxation, take a bath with baking soda.
2. Use body oil or lotion.
A light, clear oil like coconut oil or apricot seed oil can create a boundary between you and the rest of the world. You can even put a quartz crystal inside of the lotion bottle and set the intention for protection, for a boundary. This is particularly helpful in those winter months when our skin needs a little more protection from the elements, let alone the people we're cozying up to the fire with.
3. Sage and smudge everything.
Palo Santo. Incense. Sage. Burn that stuff. Over your body. In your space. Ask for clarity. Say a brief metta (lovingkindness) meditation while you do it: "May all beings be happy, healthy, free from danger. May we live with peace and ease." Sometimes I start sage-ing when my friends and I are having deep emotional talks (hey, the people are into it). It helps release everything.
4. Clean your space.
This might sound a little wooh-wooh, but fairies, beings of light, angels — they all like clean spaces. Why do you think all yoga studios and spiritual havens are kept meticulously clean? Have you ever heard of clean home, clean mind? It's a thing. Clean your space, friend. Throw out old objects. Move things around. Shift the energy of the room. Feng shui is real.
5. Shake things up.
Dancing, moving your body, and shaking are really great for moving energy and coming back to yourself. Set a timer for ten minutes and play your favorite tunes. You'll be so pumped that you did and you'll feel yourself way more than before.
6. Release into the earth.
The earth is strong. The earth can hold big emotions. When in doubt, squat down, put your hands on the earth, and affirm "Mother earth, I give this energy back to you. Please absorb it."
7. Try an energy field meditation.
Sit still for a moment. Right now. How far do you feel your energy field has extended? Imagine there's a circle of your energy around you, with a diameter about five feet wide. Ask the diameter to come in to four feet. Then three feet. Two feet. One foot. Your skin. Pull all your energy into your core. Do you feel safer? More charged up? More in your own skin? I sure do.
8. Imagine a boundary, imagine a rose.
Draw a boundary around your body like a bubble. Pick whatever color is calming to you. I like to imagine white or sparkly light. Then I switch it to gold or green or pink. If you've sensed that you've picked up someone else's stuff, see a rose inside your body. Let the rose open and blossom with all of that person's energy. Now send the rose out of your body and into the sky. Let it dissolve into purple fire light, purifying everything.
A good friend recently said to me, "Setting a boundary is an act of love." And I love that. A sound healer and I wrote a song together and the lyrics went "That's your stuff. That's not my stuff. That's your stuff. That's not my stuff. Woah, woah, woah, woah, woah!"
So, set your boundaries as an act of self-love. And don't pick up other people's garbage. It's simply not for you.
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