If you’re struggling with thoughts of suicide, PLEASE call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
For many of us, recovering from addiction and mental illness entails a multipronged approach, where we’re not just relying on the traditional forms of treatment of medication, therapy and professional rehabilitation but also exploring other avenues of self-healing. We might find that achieving abstinence hasn’t solved our deeply rooted mental and emotional difficulties. We might feel that even though we’ve achieved sobriety, we’re still suffering internally. We’re still grappling with depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses. We’re still suffering from suicidal thoughts. We’re still feeling tormented by obsessive thoughts, compulsions, neuroses and other toxic thought and behavioral patterns. We’re still feeling self-hating and self-destructive. For some of us, traditional talk-therapy helps us to explore the issues in question but doesn’t necessarily allow us to resolve them fully. We might have been working with a therapist for years, about the problems we feel contributed to our addictive patterns, our wounds and traumas, our sense of self and our self-esteem, only to still feel as though we’re at war with ourselves. We might have tried medication only to feel the side effects were just as troublesome as the initial symptoms, or we might have had good luck with a medication but not want to stay on it permanently. Many of us find that the traditional healing tools we’re normally presented with just don’t go deep enough to achieve full healing. We still feel as though we’re suffering, and we might feel as though we have no recourse against our addictions and mental health issues and all of the pain we’re still feeling. For many of us who find ourselves in this position, or for those of us simply looking for new and profound modalities for self-healing, energy healing can be precisely what we’ve been looking for.
Energy healing is a broad term that encapsulates any kind of healing that works directly with our energy, helping us to heal holistically and addressing all of our systems together – mental, emotional, physical and spiritual – in order to achieve profound transformation and lasting recovery. Generally speaking, most healing modalities don’t work with all of our systems at once. Talk therapy, for example, might work with our thoughts and feelings but not with our physical bodies or spirits. When we explore energy healing, we give ourselves the unique opportunity to heal not just from the chemical imbalances and thought patterns making us feel depressed or dependent upon a drug, but also all of the energetic, physical and spiritual elements contributing to our unwellness. Common types of energy healing are chakra alignment, yoga and meditation, acupuncture, acupressure, and tapping or Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). All of these work with all of our systems together, in conjunction. We’re not separating out the disparate symptoms of our illnesses and addressing them individually. We’re addressing our whole bodies and all of the systems within, together, to achieve true healing.
Our chakras are the energy centers in our bodies. They govern how we feel about ourselves, how we feel in the world, how we relate to others, and how we function in our lives. Our root chakra, for example, dictates how grounded and centered we feel, both within ourselves and in relation to other people, and how stable and secure we feel both in our lives and in the world. Our chakras can become imbalanced due to trauma, due to old wounds and pain we haven’t healed from, and even due to the stresses of everyday life. If our root chakra is deficient, or doesn’t have enough energy flowing to it, for example, we can feel deeply insecure and unstable, ungrounded and uncentered. We might lack confidence and faith in ourselves. We might struggle with low self-esteem and be financially unstable. Chakra alignment works to balance each of our chakras to bring them into equilibrium, to direct a healthy flow of energy to each of them, and to create harmony amongst them so that we feel balanced and at peace within ourselves. When our chakras are aligned, we feel connected to our inner selves and our purpose. We feel a clear sense of direction. We feel motivated and inspired to live our truth. We feel mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually balanced and harmonious within ourselves.
Similarly, acupuncture, acupressure and tapping work to bring all of our systems into balance and harmony. These forms of energy healing work with the energy pathways or meridians in the body. Just as our chakras or energy centers can become misaligned, our meridians, or the pathways of energy throughout our bodies, can also become misaligned and out of balance. We can develop blockages in our energy that contribute to our depression, anxiety and other mental health issues, along with our addictions. When we have illnesses that we consider to be mental and emotional, they’re also impacting us physically, and in turn we can find physical causes for these illnesses such as hormone imbalances and problems with our endocrine and digestive systems. Our thought patterns and emotional patterns are correlated to different organs, for example fear and anxiety are correlated to the kidneys, anger to the liver, grief to the lungs, obsessing to the spleen. Energy healing can help heal our energetic imbalances, bringing us peace not only in our bodies but also in our minds, hearts and spirits.
Yoga and meditation are also forms of energy healing, although yoga is sometimes misconstrued as being just a form of physical exercise, and meditation can be misconstrued as being just a form of mindfulness that helps to control our wayward thinking. While these things are true, the powerful energetic benefits of both yoga and meditation go even deeper than that. They are unifying forces that bring together our thoughts, feelings, physical bodies and spiritual connection to our inner selves and higher power. They work to heal us in holistic and therapeutic ways that can be hard to define in words.
Energy healing can be added to our mental and emotional wellness program, not to replace the other tools that already work for us, but to bolster them and add to their effectiveness in helping us to recover and transform ourselves from within.
Riverside Recovery is committed to helping you get back the life you love. Our treatment programs include multiple forms of therapy, family workshops and mindfulness-based relapse prevention education. Call (800) 871-5440 for more information.