There are common phrases and words you'll hear used repeatedly in healing and spiritual circles. If you are new to healing you may find yourself asking: But what does that actually mean? Let's address some of the most common terms below.
Holding space. You may be sharing that you're going through a difficult time and someone says: I'll hold space for you. Sometimes if a client is struggling and hoping to get in right away but has to wait for an appointment, I'll say: I'll start holding space for you now until we can connect. So what the heck does holding space actually mean? It means to offer unconditional support with no judgment. It means to support someone in their own transformation without trying to fix them, or offer opinions, or cast blame or shame. It is saying to someone, whatever your journey needs to be, I respect it and I'm here for you. I like to envision it as no matter where someone is or what they are going through, you are energetically holding and nurturing them. Holding space sounds simple but it is actually quite deep, beautiful and powerful. In every healing session a facilitator is holding space for the client to shift, as well as holding space for their guides to connect and work on the client. And in every workshop a spiritual teacher is holding space for the entire group to feel safe and supported to make the necessary shifts.
Integrating. This is a huge part of the healing process. I like to use the image of all these little floating particles of light that have been scattered in your energy body, and integrating means all of them falling into their rightful place, or harmonizing as they come together. You can feel things integrating in moments of connection and heightened awareness. It can be a lightbulb moment of, 'Oh, I see why I've been feeling that way, it's because of x, y and z!' It's accepting and embracing your truths in the form of thoughts, feelings, beliefs, experiences and memories. If a healer says, 'I'll let you integrate that', it really means the energy work has stirred up or revealed the puzzle pieces and you now need time to see how they click into place.
Processing. There are many different processes in life and healing is no different. If I'm out of sorts I'll often say, 'I'm just processing a lot right now.' This means that I'm aware I'm actively healing something but I know it's in motion and not whole or complete yet. Whereas integration can feel great because you're connecting the dots, processing can feel heavy and be a bit more of a drag. Processing is where you have to move through your feelings. I liken it to an image of being in a canoe in choppy waters and steering yourself toward the light beyond the horizon. You know you have to paddle your way through to reach the other side but you just want to jump ship sometimes. Everyone processes energy differently. Some may process gently and are subtly aware of it. Others may process more aggressively and have a strong physical purge or experience more symptoms. And at some point in your healing journey you are bound to experience all facets of processing, from gentle to harsh.
Shift. Making a shift is allowing energy to transform. Once I locate something in a client's energy I'll sometimes say, 'Okay, let's shift this.' What that means is let's move it, let's change it. You may be feeling very angry and it shifts into motivation. You may be feeling discomfort and it shifts into peace. In a healing session you are shifting throughout. The whole session is about moving energy and shifting things that are out of balance and creating disharmony for you. The intention is always to bring things into balance and harmony. It's about locating suffering and shifting into strength to create wholeness.
Manifest. Every new moon I write a new moon manifesto. These are intentions I'm setting, things that I am consciously committing to creating in my life. To manifest is to make a choice and to create. Whereas making a wish might seem hopeful but not powerful, manifesting is the powerful act of creating at will. If someone is complaining or whining, or dreading an experience, I'll often say, 'manifest it.' In other words, don't forget your magic man! You are powerful, make it happen. There will be many less than ideal interactions in your life but you can limit the negativity of them by manifesting. Let's say you need to have a difficult conversation with someone. Start by asking your guides to connect with theirs, call on Source, and surrender it while manifesting the most peaceful possibility for everyone involved. This works; I experience it time and again. The power of manifestation reminds us that we are constantly co-creating with the universe.
Intuitive. Intuition is a sense and an intuitive is someone who regularly uses and develops their sense of intuition. They are very self-aware and feel things beyond the five senses. They have a strong inner-knowing and instinct. They can tune into and read a vibration beyond the limited physical self. This is why intuitives need a lot of alone and quiet time. They are conscious to and can feel a lack of awareness or authenticity, and can become easily overwhelmed by energy.
Grounding. Being grounded means being present in your body and feeling connected and tethered to the earth. If someone is ungrounded they may feel flighty or scattered, off-balance, and find it difficult to make decisions or get clear on things. I'll always encourage students after a workshop to make sure they're grounded before they drive home. When you're doing a lot of energy work you can find yourself feeling outside of your body as if you're floating in the ethers. After teaching a workshop I truly feel the most awesome natural high from being in such a high vibrational energy for so long. Getting grounded is essential to feeling balanced as an empath so you can manage the various energies around you. Grounding can be achieved by sitting on the floor and feeling yourself sink into your sit bones, standing barefoot in the grass, sitting with your back against a tree, jumping up and down on the spot and shaking out the arms or legs, or even the simple act of washing your hands or placing a hand on your body to bring your awareness back to your physical self.
Projecting. We are all projecting and this is where the term 'own it' can really come into play. Projection is like a defense mechanism where both negative and positive qualities in ourselves show up in others. This is because we have projected our unconscious qualities onto others in order to bring them into our consciousness. For example, if I am off put by someone's blatant disregard for something, I know there is something in myself that I am disregarding which is why it's being projected. Projection can have me recognize it, seek its root cause in myself, and then start to shift and heal it. Practicing positive self-responsibility with projection can do wonders for your personal relationships.
Mirroring. This is very similar to projecting. Just as a mirror reflects your image, you may find that when you are around certain energies or groups of people, you start to mirror their energy and traits, as they do yours. You'll see this a lot with couples who are so close they begin to resemble each other or develop their mutual quirks. The people who trigger you the most in your life are your greatest mirrors. They serve you by reflecting back to you the things you most want to deny or reject but need to face. What we consider to be our shortcomings or suppressed negative aspects of ourselves are what get mirrored back to us for the opportunity to heal.
Trigger. You can be triggered by people, places, words, actions, sounds and more. To be triggered means something significant has been rattled in you. It can often see you go from being calm and cool to instantly upset and angry. We all have various triggers and each with their own degree of intensity. If something struck a nerve for you, you were triggered. And if it was on a deep level, it's important to express yourself and say, 'I need some time and space to process this.' Triggering can feel like someone poking a raw wound. It's important to not only notice your triggers but to then seek within why they are there and where they originated from, so you can heal them at the root.