Parenting is one of the most rewarding and challenging stages in a persons’ life. The emotional, physical and mental issues it raises for us, keeps us in a constant state of growth. As a parent the more you are settled within yourself the more present you will be able to be for your child. The new paradigm of parenting advocates that we sit with our children as they cry and let them express their emotions freely. However to be able to facilitate this as a parent you need to be balanced and centered within yourself so you can truly be there for your child.

You will notice that your child’s crying or dissatisfaction at things will upset you more when you have your own turmoil or inner sadness going on. This presents a problem for most parents as it is when we have our children that we have the least amount of time to devote to our own growth and healing. Many people speak of dissatisfaction with their spiritual lives since becoming parents as they no longer have time to meditate or “get in the zone”. However parenting can be embraced as the most profound spiritual journey as it brings to us many opportunities for growth and wonder.

Through the everyday activities of parenthood we find the treasures and hidden hurts of our own childhoods. We confront our own past and make decisions about what we want to model for our children, which is often vastly different from our own upbringing. Sometimes in parenting our children it is hard to distinguish whether the current issue we see before us is our child’s, or merely a reflection of our own inner struggle. Therefore any tool that can help parents to work through these unresolved emotional blockages whilst going about their everyday lives can be of tremendous benefit.

Reiki is one such tool that can be used in everyday parenting situations to restore balance and connection with your own sense of self. It is a method of placing your hands on your own body (chest for example) or the body of someone else and channeling universal energy to balance emotional, physical or mental anguish. Reiki energy can be turned on or off at a moments notice which is fabulous for allowing you to integrate it into your day. For example you can sit and give yourself Reiki while you watch your child play. Interruptions such as upending a spilt drink and tending to a runny nose can be dealt with followed by you returning to your Reiki practice effortlessly. In this way it is unlike many other methods of stress relief where you need to be able to create a special physical and mental space to receive the benefits.

Although the method and application of Reiki is simple, the benefits are far from simplistic. A common belief that people hold about Reiki is that it is a formal treatment process performed in a clinic setting only. Although Reiki Treatments are commonly performed in this way those who have learnt Reiki know they can use it in all aspects of their daily life. Examples include giving Reiki to your child when they have fallen over to calm them, giving Reiki to your cat that has just had an operation, or giving Reiki to yourself if you are feeling scattered to help you feel calm and empowered. Possibly the best part of being attuned to Reiki energy is being able to offer a solution for your imbalance at no cost and minimal effort.

Throughout the world it has been identified in over ninety seven different cultures that there is an underlying energy that animates life.1 It is this energy and its state of balance which determines the health of all plants, animals and people. A lack of this energy is seen to be the root cause for the manifestation of physical disease or mental unrest. Whether this lack of energy has come about because of toxicity, emotional or physical trauma or stress, Reiki has the ability to dissipate these blockages and release the energy into free flow. This energy rebalance facilitates healing in the emotional, physical or mental spheres of a person.

Reiki is defined as “spiritually guided life force energy”. It involves the laying on of hands so that the energy of the universe may pass through the chakra and meridian system to promote balance. This treatment can be performed for others or used as a self treatment. It is being widely embraced by cultures all over the world as the ability to channel Reiki energy is available to everyone. Reiki is not for the “gifted” or only for the elite few who have worked through all their “stuff”. To be able to pass the energy you need only be attuned and taught by a Reiki Master which can be as simple as attending a one day workshop.

The origins of Reiki energy can be traced back to the ancient healing that was performed by the Tibetan monks over 2500 years ago. Its philosophy and practices have been adapted to suit the western culture so it is easily learnt and integrated. Although there is a strong spiritual basis to Reiki practice it is taught all around the world in a non religious context so it fits with any existing belief system.

In this modern age of parenting when there are so many “right ways” to do everything, we strive to do the best for our children and often end up putting ourselves on the bottom of the list. We need to care for the nurturers, otherwise when our personal cup is empty, contrary to popular belief, our natural instinct is to push our young away. 2 In our society nurturing yourself is seen as selfish, where instead it should be encouraged. We are the role models for our children and you can’t expect your child to love and care for themselves if the behaviour you model as a parent is someone who runs themselves ragged and has no boundaries.

In not taking care of ourselves and our needs we become reactive rather than responsive. Our reactions to stress and everyday events are out of proportion as our body holds our emotional baggage. People are using Reiki as a tool for balancing themselves as parents and caregivers so that they may find calmness within that often gets lost in the business of parenthood.

In becoming a parent we are challenged daily with this balance between giving to our children and nurturing ourselves. The beauty of Reiki is that in giving your child Reiki (for example when they are going to sleep) you also receive the benefit of the energy as it passes through you. To be able to hold a sick child or embrace a stressed partner and feel the universal energy pass effortlessly out of your hands resulting in the other persons balance is truly a gift. In this time of planetary change and much suffering any modality that offers its services free for you to use at any time is worth its weight in gold