Learning Reiki: A Student’s Perspective on Expectations & The Ego

Posted on September 7, 2016

Learning Reiki: A Student's Perspective on Expectations & The Ego

Diona Ceniza is one of my past students. She recently completed the full Reiki training—Reiki Levels I, II, and III—and is moving into setting up her professional practice. Here’s her experience of learning Reiki.

The Benefits of Reiki Self Care

I learned first-hand about the benefits you get to enjoy when doing Reiki self-care. I never really know how it will turn out each time I give myself Reiki, but often I experience an amazing sense of well-being, a feeling of becoming more centered, and on a couple of occasions a sudden outpouring of emotions (i.e. crying my eyes out!)

I have come to realize and appreciate how important giving myself Reiki is as part of my self-care regimen.

[bctt tweet=”I have come to realize and appreciate how important giving myself Reiki is as part of my self-care regimen.” username=”DeborahReiki”]

Reiki Treatment: What to Expect

The more I study Reiki and dive deeper, the more I learned to remove expectations.  When I first started, there was this hope that each session would be an amazing cleansing or big release of emotions.  Now I see that I wouldn’t be able to function if it was that intense every time, and I’m more trusting of the process.  

So whether the session leaves me crying, on cloud nine, or somewhere in between, I’m grateful.  And even if some sessions are more subtle, the overall effect of practicing self-care Reiki on my life has been anything but (a relationship ending abruptly, strong push towards a new career, just pure chaos…).  So I guess another lesson I learned from giving myself Reiki is that it truly does have a cleansing effect, and while it can be painful, it’s ultimately for the best.

How Getting Reiki Sessions Can Vary (A Lot!)

I hope to become a professional Reiki practitioner and receiving professional Reiki sessions taught me a couple of things. Firstly, it taught me how to conduct myself when running a private practice. Secondly, I learned how different each session and practitioner can be. Practitioners differ considerably in their approach but can be equally impactful.  

My first experience receiving Reiki was quite dramatic. The first practitioner I went to worked at home and was very open.  She said I needed to leave my job, gave me the necklace she was wearing because she said it would help me stay grounded, and ordered a Pema Chodron book for me on Amazon.  The session felt like the practitioner tapped into a lot of stuck energy in my chest. It physically felt as if someone sat on my chest during the session!  The session itself was intense and I went home that night hunched over from the emotions that had been dredged up.

My second experience with a different practitioner was more subtle, but the impact of it lasted long after the session. The session took place in an office setting.  It was more gentle and uplifting, and there was a stronger sense of boundaries that, as an art therapist, I am more familiar with. I felt much lighter and less stressed for a few months after the session.

Despite these differences, however, my sessions with both practitioners were equally transformative, shifting my life towards a path that involves potentially becoming a Reiki practitioner myself.  

The Benefits & Challenges of Giving Reiki to Others

One of the first things I learned giving Reiki to friends and family was how energized I felt. In a way, it can actually feel more healing than doing Reiki on myself.

Reiki & The Ego

On the other hand, I also realized how afraid I can be to offer Reiki to other people, largely because of my own ego and worries that the other person wouldn’t feel any benefits.

Ego is especially present when I give Reiki and it’s the reason it took me so long to fulfill the certification requirements.  For months, I delayed asking others if I could practice on them because I was afraid of hearing them say no, or worse, that they would find the experience lacking if they said yes.  In other words, there’s a big part of me that wants to be seen as a great practitioner, never mind the wellbeing of the client.  I try to be mindful of it as much as I can and remind myself that it is Reiki doing the healing, not me.  

The biggest lesson I’m taking away from this is that I have a long way to go in terms of realizing that I am not giving Reiki or doing the healing, the person takes from the energy what he or she needs. I also need to become more in touch with my intuition.

Reiki & Connection

I also realized that when giving Reiki, I feel deeply connected to the other person.  Besides feeling immense gratitude that they are willing to open themselves up in such a big way, their happiness and well-being becomes my primary concern.  I’ve never felt bonded to another person in such a deep but peaceful way.

Learning Reiki and taking the full training was excellent. I continue to enjoy this amazing journey and have learned and grown so much.


Interested in learning more about Reiki? Here’s how to find a qualified Reiki teacher.

In New York City and want to take a class? Check out the details here.

Back To Top