I think I’ve been talking around this topic for some years now, but yesterday someone asked me what it’s like to hold space for others because she suddenly became aware of how she was holding the energy steady for her whole family during a challenging time. And this is truly the marvelous thing about ourselves as human beings: our Brilliant System helps us to be, do, express, and embody whatever necessary if we open to that flow. She shared that she hadn’t been aware that was what she was doing until just recently.
As with any skill our Brilliant System teaches us, we can hone it with conscious intention and practice. And the way you hold space and your understanding of it will likely evolve over time. For many decades I thought I should be holding space out of compassion, which often slipped into the murkier bounds of empathy, sympathy, and pity. This looked like being a patient, non-judgmental listener, and stomaching whatever strong emotions came my way with little regard for my own boundaries and well-being. It takes a lot of effortful energy to steady oneself in this way. This practice is unsustainable and unkind to the Self over the long run (and a “long run” can be decades, but it will catch up to you caregiving, empathic types eventually).
Over time I found a way of plugging into my own Source energy, which felt like a connection in my dan tien. (I quite literally feel like a device plugging into its charger.) When I discovered this was possible, I marveled at how this connection could sustain me even if I felt physically, emotionally, and mentally spent. I used to worry about not being in top for for clients during long days, but I found that I could build endurance by tapping into this connection.
Over the last year and a half I felt my connection shift to my central channel. This feels like a wider cable than the point at my dan tien. And I feel like I am plugged not only into my own Higher Self energy, but into the field of oneness itself. Plugging in this way is like feeding the soul from Source itself, so “being there” for others does not empty the Self. You are simply channeling a coherent field of energy for yourself and anyone in your field of presence and intention (so you can do this work at a distance).
When I hold space for myself I am most attentive to expanding around the points of pain and resistance in my fields. When I hold space for others, I guide them to do the same while I maintain that expansive field of possibility so they can meet me on the higher ground of their Higher Selves, to which I consciously connect. Their Higher Selves direct whatever healing is happening. I take my cues from the energy and communicate whatever needs communicating to my clients, who can then decide what feels right to shift, release, and receive. This is why all healing is self healing.