If you identify as an empath, energy healer, lightworker, or psychic – it is likely you are in the know about spiritual protection. The personality traits of having heightened sensitivity, intuitive awareness and spiritual vision often make you more susceptible to interacting with unseen energies, channelling information and engaging with higher intelligences that most people just don’t have to worry about.

As a Reiki Teacher, this is my day to day.

I have been navigating this space for many years and have observed myself, my clients and students exploring spiritual protection as part of managing their energetic security. Protection is commonly initiated during a morning practice/ritual either through visualisation, invocation, affirmation or breath work. For many people it is to protect them against negative energies, spirit entities, energetic parasites and emotional transference from other people.

However, i have grown to see it as more limiting in nature than it is helpful.

In this article i will outline 3 ways spiritual protection might be holding you back in your spiritual development:

  1. Keeping you in fear based consciousness                                                                                                 

The use of language here is subtle yet important. Our choice of words reveals a lot about the health of our mindset. Protection is preventative and defensive by nature and is focused on what might happen to you in the future. It often originates from a fear of ‘What if’, a fear of the unknown and has an undertone of fear of survival in the world in day to day life. These fears are characteristic of energetic disharmony within the Base Chakra (1st chakra) and can keep part of your awareness centred in this lower vibrational fight/flight state of being.

For more info on base chakra imbalance and how to heal it, read this article

2. The problem of quick fix and victim mentalities                                                                                      

 Most forms of protection are a quick fix and do not involve taking a responsibility for monitoring the ongoing health of your energy field on a daily basis. They are typically done once per day first thing in the morning and are not rooted in the present moment. In time it often becomes habitual with little attention given to intention and specifics. Quick fix protection is almost akin to taking a daily pill of medication to prevent bad things from happening to you – it is fast, convenient and ‘set and forget’.

The victim mentality can come in here in feeling powerless to control and influence your inner/outer reality, blaming others for draining you and being energy vampires, feeling disempowered and at the mercy of negative energy.

3. Putting walls up and not forming energetic boundaries                                                                   

Spiritual protection usually involves putting up a fixed barrier to perceived external threats  with the intent to shield your auric field for a certain period of time. This is not an energetic boundary. It is a future based defence mechanism towards all that could harm you, external conditions/forces that could drain you, and to concerns of emotional transference from other people.

To give an example. When you first become aware that you’re feeling drained by someone or depleted by large group situations – the protection reflex is to put up a wall of light. The alternative is to respond and take action to change & influence your internal/external energetic dynamics by establishing healthy boundaries.

Developing a toolkit of practices and spiritual first aid comes in helpful here that you can draw on wherever you are in such situations. For me, this is where reiki practice is a useful skill to balance the energy field, anywhere & anytime without putting up a wall. When done in this way you can relieve the symptoms with ease rather than reacting with the fight/flight reflex.

Final thoughts

Cultivating healthy spiritual boundaries starts in the here and now. It is an active process that involves cultivating ongoing awareness of your energy field from moment to moment. Here you begin to respond rather than react, learning to identify and balance the needs of your energetic climate according to what is arising in the present moment.

Setting healthy boundaries extends to multiple domains of the human experience: physical, emotional, thought and feeling. These will all influence each other in different ways. As your boundaries become more known and embodied, they will become more solid and integrated in your energy field.

Learning tools and spiritual first aid to assist you in managing your energetic health is important. Practices such as mindfulness, reiki, meditation and qigong are all ways of balancing your energy field. They can be studied and learnt by anyone wishing to enhance their self awareness in this area and to develop healthier energetic boundaries.