Reiki: Offering a quickening in the healing of trauma

I am a marriage and family therapist and a reiki master practitioner. In my practice I have integrated the two modalities to create something I call Intuitive Therapy. In my experience with clients I have seen how Reiki can assist in releasing energetic bumps and bruises that my clients have encountered in their life experiences.

There was a research study done, known as the ACE study, that showed the correlation between adverse childhood experiences (such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, having a parent with an addiction, having parents who divorced, witnessing domestic violence, etc.) and mental health and physical health issues. The study showed that the more ACE’s an individual has, the more likely they are to experience mental health challenges and physical ailments such as chronic pain. I draw attention to this study, because most of the clients I work with have experienced some form of adverse life challenges and I have seen the powerful results that Reiki has on helping my clients release the pain of these experiences.

When my clients first come in for treatment many are experiencing chronic pain, anxiety, depression, and various other mental and physical health challenges. I have been pleased to see that my clients who engage in Intuitive Therapy experience what they describe as a “quickening” in the resolution of  their blocked memories and emotions, which leads them to experience less chronic pain and more joy and connection to source. Many of my clients come into treatment with no conscious understanding of what is troubling them. Many have blocked out the memories of their traumatic experiences. During their Intuitive Therapy sessions I utilize Reiki to guide them deeper into the unconscious layers of their stored emotions. This results in them connecting to their own intuition, bringing them the conscious awareness of what needs to be released in order to connect with their authentic self and release the woundings they have experienced.

You might be curious to know what Intuitive Therapy is? A session begins like a traditional therapy session with the client sharing what is troubling them. I then ask them to connect to their parts to see if there is something they feel called to release and something they feel called to bring into their life. After they share what feels relevant, I ask them to lie on the Reiki table. I then proceed to facilitate Reiki for 25-30 minutes. While clients are on the Reiki table, I ask them to share what they are experiencing. Many connect to their innate intuition, seeing images of where the blocks are and memories that have been repressed. On one occasion a woman saw ropes tied around her heart and had the memory of being hurt by a family member as a young child. I then utilize the images and metaphors they present to guide my clients in understanding the relevance of their experiences to their physical and mental challenges. I also offer them guided visualizations that work with the flow of Reiki to help them release the blocks they are sensing. In the example of the ropes, I had the client visualize a white burning flame inside the center of her heart burning the ropes. As she visualized this her body began to shake and then relax, she wept, sighed, and then smiled stating she felt a calm come over her. As you can see, during these cherished moments, I have witnessed clients experience cathartic release.

After the Reiki portion of the session, I have my client journal about their experience. We then discuss the relevance of their experience to the initial challenges they came to session with. Most clients report that they sense a deeper connection between their experiences and their struggles; they share that they experienced a release of the hold the memories had on their body, mind, and spirit; they report they have are able to see their full potential and authentic self; they share that they feel a unification with source and all of creation; and they feel a sense of peace. Many of these clients go on to study Reiki to use in their everyday life. They report that their ability to manage the everyday stresses of life has increased. They report greater satisfaction in their lives. Lastly, they report that the past no longer haunts their present.

I feel honored to hold space for my clients. To witness them discovering not only who they are meant to be, but who they have always been at their core. Traditional medical practices often don’t look at the energetic or spiritual aspect of the client. They focus on the mind and body separately and often pathologize clients which leads clients to feel disempowered and often hopeless to change the outcome of their lives. In my work, I am open and curious to the light within every individual. I see their beauty and I guide them to discover it for themselves. I focus on healing the mind, body, energy, and spirit of an individual simultaneously. I cannot help but be curious if the future of healing is this integrative approach. I hope to continue to work in this manner and eventually would love to be a member of those shifting the language of healing.


I a marriage and family therapist and Reiki Master Practitioner. I received my Master’s of Arts in Counseling Psychology in Marriage and Family Therapy and Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute. I received my Reiki Usui/Holy Fire II and Master certification with The International Center for Reiki Training. If this way of working is of interest to you, I can be contacted at