Embracing Power with Love

I have been thinking about my relationship with power. As a young woman, my tendency was to play it small. My family gave me the implicit message to keep my head down, play it safe, and not make waves. While I loved to shine on stage, and my creativity was encouraged, in other aspects of my life I learned to not ask for more than my share, to not show my vulnerability and struggles, to work hard for what was just enough, and not take chances.

Image of man shaking finger at woman who has her head down and ears covered

There have been many twists and turns along the journey to step fully into my power, and that journey is by no means finished. Along the way sexual trauma and some poor relationship choices contributed to the perceptions of my powerlessness.

I think the journey to reclaiming my power began about 12 years ago when I started to learn about my own sexual power and divine nature as a sexual being through Moksha Magick. Sexuality is such a misunderstood and feared source of power and beauty. Ironically, or perhaps perfectly, I began that part of the journey before realizing how much damage was present in my sexual being.

Image of a woman's naked back with the arms of her partner wrapped around her

Then four years ago I was finally ready to face the sexual trauma from earlier in my life. I ran away from the pain and shame and anger from that trauma for over 20 years. I blocked it out so completely, that I didn’t remember it at all until I finally felt safe enough to stand in my power and face it. It was hard, messy work. (I wrote a little bit about it here) I cried, and screamed, and rocked, and shook. I took three months off work so that I could focus all my attention on reclaiming my power. I used all the tools I now had at my disposal, including that increased understanding of the Divine nature of my sexuality. I was engaged at the time, and my fiance was able to support me with sexual healing techniques we developed together over time. We also worked together as I learned to embrace all the difficult emotions that always become entangled with sexual trauma: shame, fear, guilt anger, helplessness, hopelessness, etc. and to express them so that I was no longer carrying them inside my body. Another important healing tool during that time was inner child work. I would talk to, write to, and embrace a specific doll, giving her all the love, understanding, and acceptance that I should have had as a young teenager.

About a year later, in 2016, I was again ready to take another step further into my power. The word I chose to focus on that year was power. The Universe delivered. I participated in a program for singing performance called Breakthrough (I wrote about it here and here). Nine of us participated, each for our own reasons. The facilitators were very gifted at identifying how each of us was ready to grow and what we needed to step into next. The song the group chose for me to perform for the final concert was “Happy.” It was perfect. It was about how letting go of fear and others’ expectations (in other words, stepping into our own power) is how we embrace happiness. Music is such a powerful healing tool, especially when we embrace it with intention and focus.

Image of woman breaking chainsLater that year, I entered the Integrative Orgasmic Healing program with Freyja and Michael Inanna. Once again, the focus was on fully expressing our emotions about traumas big and small. I cannot emphasize enough how important emotional expression is! The other major component of that three month experience was using sexual energy as a healing tool to fill the energy vacuum once those challenging emotions were released. So again, sexuality became a powerful tool in my healing journey. And I also had the support of Michael and Freyja. I cannot tell you how much I value their ability to create safe space and to intuitively respond to and honor the needs that arise within that space.

Here we are now in 2018. My healing journey continues. As long as we remain on this earth plane, the need for healing and growth continues. We cannot and must not rest on past accomplishments. And so, I step further into my power. I am revisiting what it means to be a sexual healer and what sacred sexuality means to me. I am continuing to find new ways to experience and express my emotions as new layers of trauma surface, asking to be released and healed. My inner child work has taken on greater depth as I find new ways to connect with and nurture her.

There’s a big difference this time, and it filled me with fear when the work presented itself to me. As new layersImage of hands outstretched began to rise earlier this summer, I was actually excited about what the hard and messy work ahead would mean. I knew I had the tools and the knowledge I needed to take a hard look at and heal new aspects of the old trauma. But I was afraid of doing it alone. I did not have a life partner or skilled practitioners by my side. Without that kind of intensive support, I wasn’t sure how to proceed. But as with all other things in life, I had all the resources I needed. Support came from varied and unexpected directions. In fact, all the support I have found and asked for is an aspect of my power. Our power does not need to live in isolation. In fact power in isolation is meaningless.

I have often been afraid of people I perceive as being in power. Seeing or experiencing people wield power for power’s sake or to make themselves feel important infuriates me. I fear making that same mistake myself. If that’s what power is, I don’t want to be powerful! But no, that is NOT the only expression of power. Power can be expressed as sexuality and all the creative force that entails. Power can be expressed through emotions and holding space for strong emotions. Power can be expressed through acceptance and understanding. Power can be expressed through music. Power can be expressed through joy. Power can be expressed through support of those that need lifting up. Power can even be expressed by asking for help. Power can be expressed through connection. Power can be expressed through love.

So, as I stand on the precipice, preparing to step even more fully into my power, I embrace my power with love.

Image of woman embracing power with love

Points of Light: Path of the Healer

Points of Light: The Path of the Healer

In this installment of Points of Light, I try to answer the question, how do you start on the path of becoming a healer?

Here’s the short version: It starts with “the call,” the passion for doing the work. We are the guides for others doing their own healing work. We need the conviction and knowing that what we are doing is working. It is about service, not ego.

Please ask questions in the comments, and let me
know what other topics you would like to hear about!

A Year of Choices, a Year to Ask

“Ask, Trust, Allow” – Author Unknown

Picture of three open doors, with the word "choice" superimposed over them

2017 was a year full of choices, partially because I asked for them. As I mentioned in previous posts, (this one too) my word for 2017 was choice. Granted, every year is full of choices. Not a day goes by that we don’t make choices, even if that choice is to maintain the status quo.

One of the things I learned throughout the year was to remember that I had a choice, and even more importantly, that just because I had chosen something at one time, I did not have to keep choosing it.

So I chose to close the healing center that I worked so hard to create. I chose not to choose a new goal right away. I chose to be gentle with myself as I transitioned away from the old dream. I chose to enjoy myself and return to some hobbies I had not made time for in years. I chose to feed my soul be attending and sharing in groups that others were facilitating. I chose to honor my body, to nourish it with movement and better nutrition. I chose to release more trauma stored in my body. I chose to claim my power regarding who has access to my body and I how I want to share it. I chose to embrace my sexuality with joy and power. I chose to heal and grow, rather than stagnate. I chose to begin dreaming new dreams.

For 2018, the word I choose to bring with me throughout the year is “ASK.” For far too long, I have held back in asking for what I need and for what I want. I have lived my life in fear of being told, “no,” mistaking that “no” for a rejection of the validity of the request or of myself. I have hidden my need for help, mistaking vulnerability and need for weakness. I have forgotten that even when human help isn’t available that I have a legion of guides and gods in the spirit world, not to mention my True Self, ready to supply answers and aid if I only ASK.

So this year, I chose to face my fears and ask.

The only thing to fear…is ourselves?

This week I am preparing to teach Moksha Magick classes. Moksha Magick is a practice near and dear to my heart, but I realize that because of the focus on sexuality, many people might not be interested in exploring it. That’s okay. Everyone has a different approach and experience when it comes to a wide variety of healing practices.

Many of the people receiving this newsletter embrace the practice of Reiki and other forms of energy healing whole-heartedly, but you may have friends or family members who perceive these practices as fraudulent or even morally wrong.

I am not here to convince anybody that they should change their spiritual, religious, or ethical beliefs.

I AM here to help people face their fears. And for many certain aspects of sexuality is a big one. In fact I don’t think I have met anyone yet that doesn’t need some form of sexual, including the many sexuality educators I know (myself included).

For most of us, our sexuality has become separate from ourselves. We remove it and put it in a corner, and then call upon it only when “appropriate.” When we begin to heal, we automatically start to close that gap, whether the focus is on sexuality or not. When we bring that intention as a focus, that healing comes much more quickly.

There are other aspects of ourselves which many people are afraid of as well. Things like intuition, psychic abilities, emotional intimacy, and expression of our emotions are just a few.

These things are often much scarier than the boogie man, spiders, enclosed spaces, or even public speaking. These things are part of ourselves, and in order to become a health, whole human being, they MUST be faced.

So whether you take a Moksha Magick class, or not, I invite you to explore your fears within yourself…whether that is with me, with another practitioner, or on your own.

 

Lessons of a Sick Healer

In the last several days I have learned some interesting lessons about being sick. The first day or two I was very frustrated! The depression, allergies, and cold I’ve been battling have been kicking my butt.

I am doing some serious healing work through Explosive Sexual Healing with my mentors Michael and Freyja Inanna. With their guidance, major breakthroughs have blossomed one  after another after another.


Sick Woman Sneezing into Tissue

So why did I get sick a few days after our most recent session?

Two reasons that I’ve recognized so far: one is that my body is telling me I need to slow down and rest, and if I don’t listen to the subtle hints, it will make me slow down and rest whether I like it or not. Okay, point taken.

The second reason I am feeling so crummy actually has me excited! I feel very strongly that it is time for me to learn to take my healing to the next level! I am 100% certain that the healing modalities I practice (Reiki, Access Bars, Moksha Magick, etc.) all have the ability to 100% cure any illness of the body, mind, or soul in an instant…but why don’t they do that all the time?

There are a lot of answers to that question, but one of the most prevalent is that we don’t let them. Why wouldn’t we let them? In many cases it’s because even though we want what we’re doing to work, we just can’t acknowledge deep down that it will.

As I have told my students and clients many times, we are POWERFUL beings! We can use that power to create miraculously powerful change…or we can use that power to block the powerful healing energy pouring through us.

Now on the surface, it seems like an easy decision to make: choose miraculous powerful change over blocking powerful change. Unfortunately for most of us, it isn’t that simple.
That’s why I always encourage my students to do whatever they can to help the person they are guiding towards healing into a receptive state.

And I’ve got to say, some of my students and colleagues are better at it than I am. Some people already accept the ability to change and heal at a deep, deep level. They are able to do this so profoundly that the trust they have in themselves and the Universe pours into the recipient and through that person’s blocks like magick.

Now, I’m not saying that I’ve never healed anything through energy healing. I certainly have! Either by myself or through the facilitation of others, I have gotten rid of headaches, insomnia, nausea, a constant post nasal drip I had for years, chronic fatigue, mental triggers, emotional wounds, and more. I’ve seen all sorts of similar healings with my clients. I’m also convinced that the hypothyroidism and chronic depression I’ve been treating with pharmaceuticals for years would be much worse without this healing work.

Picture of me with the words: Ask, Trust, Allow

But you know what? I’m done! I am ready to embrace my full power and the healing of the Universe! I don’t know what it’s going to take to get me off those meds and into that state of health that I know is possible, but I’m sure it’s coming! I am ready.

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Leadership Through Vulnerability

“Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.” – Brené Brown

Man walking tightrope over sharks

On January Second, 2015, in front of witnesses, I looked directly into my own eyes and told my reflection, “I love me,” in a clear, compassionate voice.

While that seems like a simple act, I’m sure that anybody who has tried it will agree that doing so is anything but easy. To make that proclamation, especially in the presence of others, normally would leave me feeling very vulnerable. However, in this case, I felt empowered instead. I felt empowered because I had allowed myself to show my vulnerability rather than hiding it. In that sharing, I was set free and found that rather than weakness, displaying my vulnerability led to strength.

Over the past few years, I have come to appreciate that allowing our vulnerability to be seen can be an incredibly empowering experience for myself and those around me.

There were two experiences in the last eighteen months that really brought home to me that expressing my vulnerability as a leader empowers and heals both me and the members of my community who witness it.

The first experience centered on a ritual my partner of the day and I created as a tool for healing. I created the ritual as part of my healing work regarding sexual trauma. I had made a huge breakthrough near the beginning of December in which I did some powerful writing around forgiving the girl who was so scared and confused and ashamed about the situation surrounding the rapes. However, in the weeks that followed I came to realize that I had not forgiven all of me; I had not forgiven my adult-self who had made questionable decisions and chosen harmful paths in an unknowing result of what I experienced.

It was important to me to have witnesses and people to hold space during the ritual. Sharing struggles and triumphs is a human need. That need is a major reason why ceremonies like weddings and funerals are such important religious and secular events. I wasn’t thinking about the greater context at time I invited my friends. I just wanted to share my fears and celebrate my growth and healing with those I hoped would acknowledge and accept me.

In the ritual, I shared with my friends some of the specific things I had done for my healing and how utterly lost I had been for the past several months: the hours spent crying, the days spent shaking and rocking, the inability to take care of my children in the way I wanted to. Expressing those fears was an important part of taking back my power and my confidence in myself.

My partner then took us through a meditation about seeing forgiveness not as releasing guilt, but in accepting ourselves and our choices.

After the meditation, I took a jar and put in some important symbols representing different parts of my development. Looking back on it now, I think the most important item I placed in that jar was a piece of pyrite (fools gold). pyriteIt represented my fear that people perceived me as gold, but if they really knew what was inside me, they would be disappointed and see me as a fraud. I was a healer and a leader in my spiritual community, after all. What if people knew how dysfunctional I had been in the previous few months? What if people knew how full of doubt and fear and shame I was? Part of my intent in that ritual was to bury that notion and to begin to perceive myself as gold.

After I buried the jar, the others formed a line and took turns telling me how they saw me and appreciated me. I was brought to tears, not only by the beauty of the words, but by their sincerity. I wouldn’t have been able to accept their words as  genuine if I had not shared my fears first.

That ritual was a seminal moment in my life.It helped me to move back into my roles as healer, teacher, and leader with confidence.

About a year later, I was hosting a Moksha Magick ritual at my studio. It had been a long day. There had already been two other events at Circle of Light that day. The previous group had run late. Two people arrived early for the Moksha group, and I hadn’t had a chance to eat yet. My partner and I had just had a tense moment. I was hungry, tired, and on edge.

We went ahead and ate our dinner while the discussion topic was introduced. As the discussion wrapped up, we began to get ready for ritual. My partner met my eyes and asked if I was in a space to participate. The question stopped me in my tracks.closed eye I sat down and burst into tears. The old shame rushed up to greet me. What kind of leader was I? The gathering was in my space. I had suggested the day and time. I was the high priestess, for heaven’s sake!

Then something monumental happened: I was able to think clearly enough to ask myself what I would do if it was someone else in the same situation. I realized that I wouldn’t hold it against another person at all, even from a host and a leader. I would assure them it was okay and ask if there was anything I could do to help. I was able to express this revelation to the small group and then express what would help me without waiting for one of them to ask.

What I wanted was to just be held and nurtured. Instead of creating the ritual we had originally intended, we created a beautiful, powerful ritual that perfectly met the need of the moment.

I realized later what a blessing it would have been to have witnessed leaders in my own life show this level of vulnerability in a similar  situation. I was blown away. What a gift! A gift I gave myself and those who shared that space with me.

Brené Brown says, “When we meet someone, vulnerability is the first thing I look for in you, but it’s the last thing I want to show you in me.” In other words, we admire those who are able to embrace “uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure.” However, we fear others will judge us when we do the same.

That really doesn’t make a lot of sense, does it? It’s a paradox. Maybe we admire those who are willing to show their vulnerability because we want to be able to do the same. We allow our fear of weakness to hold us back from embracing our greatest strengths. Perhaps just recognizing this double standard we have for others and ourselves will allow us to begin exploring the expression of our own vulnerabilities. In doing so, we begin to courageously accept our own strength.

 

 

 

 

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Breaking Through – Part II

breakthroughopening

In my last post, I wrote about how the Breakthrough program helped me to further develop my sense of trust in the Universe and myself.

I just want to take a moment to share how the last week of the program and the final concert continued to change my life.

During that final week of the program, instead of meeting just once a week, our group of singers and seekers came together five times. Mick and Tess gave us an amazing amount of support, expertise, and genuine caring. I felt so loved and cared for by the entire group that just experiencing that support was worth the entire program.

On the day of the concert we gathered together and shared with each other our intentions for the evening. I spoke my intention of facing my fear to sing and share from an authentic space instead of wearing my performer’s mask.

When my turn came to share my song, I also seized the opportunity to share about what it meant to me. Admitting that my parents were human and made mistakes made me extremely nervous…so just giving that little speech about taking risks was a risk in itself.

And then I sang my heart out, communicating with song, with words, with movement what my very soul wanted to communicate.

happy

Our songs were chosen for us, first by Mick, and then eventually by the group. Thank you Mick, thank you everyone for taking care of me so well, and gifting me with this song that spoke to my soul so strongly. They gave me Happy, originally recorded by Leona Lewis. Thank you, thank you dear ones.

If you would like to hear what I had to say and sing, click here and enter the password nikisings

The next Breakthrough concert is on March 20th at the Unity Church in St. Petersburg.

If you are ready to break through and let yourself shine, don’t miss out on this fabulous opportunity!

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Breaking Through

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it tblooming roseook to blossom.” – Anais Nin

2015 was a breakthrough year for me. I have faced a lot of fears. I had been on three months of mental health leave from my full-time job. A few days into the New Year, I started back part-time and eventually transitioned to permanent contract work.

I started the year in the arms of my fiancé. A few months later, following some really hard discussions and decisions, we parted ways.

NYE 2015
Elizabeth, James, and me in our new home/healing center New Year’s Eve 2015

I learned to walk my own path again. My clients and students reminded me of what I know and what I’m capable of. I moved with my kids across town and expanded my business. As with any new business, we’ve struggled to make ends meet and sometimes despaired about being able to do so. At the close of 2015, I was ready to embrace life’s ups and downs, trusting that this will be a year of growth and healing. I am ready to breakthrough once more.

I have used a lot of tools for healing and personal growth during the last year: Reiki, meditation, yoga, Moksha Magick, Oneness Deeksha, art, journaling, mental health counseling…the list continues on. They all have value, and I am blessed to have them all in my toolbox to use in whatever combination makes sense in the moment. I have shared about most of these in one way or another with my students,  clients, and blog readers.

Towards the end of 2015 my dear friend Monica introduced me to a new tool. It’s called Breakthrough. It is a workshop developed to help people of all backgrounds and levels of experience in their healing and personal growth through song performance. Since October 24th, the fabulous Mick and Tess Pulver have guided a group of nine seekers to greater understanding of ourselves, where we have been, and where we want to be. For someone who loves to sing and is actively healing and growing, this was a perfect fit! With the guidance of Mick and Tess, I have continued to learn to embrace trust in all aspects of my life. I have also become aware of a fear I didn’t even know I had:  letting my true self break through the mask I tend to wear.

breakthrough

More than that, I have to share how much I admire some of the other people on this journey with me. I love to sing. I try my best to stay active in my healing work. For some of the other participants, singing in front of other people is very scary, and doing the deep work needed to really heal is downright terrifying! Yet they’re doing it! They are my heroes! It is such an honor to witness the healing and growth of everyone in Breakthrough and to share my healing and growth with them.

The culmination of all our hard work, play, and healing is a concert on January 9th at 7 pm at the Unity Church in St. Petersburg, FL. If you would like to be a part of an uplifting evening of song and hold space for some amazing performers as they share their breakthroughs, please join us!

If you are ready to do some breaking through of your own, click here for information on free introductory sessions and registration for upcoming workshops.

I wish you a blessed 2016, however you choose to breakthrough.

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