Reiki teaches us how to receive.

Often, people think learning reiki should be hard, it can’t be as simple as experiencing an attunement / reju and then starting the practice of reiki. Could it be as simple as allowing ourselves to receive and awaken to that which is already within us – Reiki?

Often during or after an attunement, people feel different – it can be a recognition of something that you knew already deep inside, it can completely blow open your belief system in many ways. Opening your mind to what else could be possible. I has a student recently who shared that she has been practicing mindfullness for 2 years and it has made a huge difference to her life. In attending Reiki Level 1 she felt it put everything into place and awakened her soul and heart. Words she admitted she’d never normally use but it just makes sense after her experience of receiving self reiki.

This is why I teach & share reiki. It brings so many gifts to us if we are willing to practice, be patient and receive.

I always ask students what draws them to learn reiki & what would they like to get from it. I get a variety of answers but two that are most often used are ‘I’d like it just for me’ or ‘I want to treat others’. Both are beautiful answers. We can look deeper into them from the perspective of receiving. Often when people say ‘just for me’ they feel it isn’t a good enough reason. It should be about others or sharing it. As if it’s selfish that we could do something for ourselves. The ‘just’ keeps us at the bottom of our self care list. The ‘just’ is me judging that maybe I should be learning this for others. Yet, the opposite is that when we self practice daily we learn to receive from ourselves. We learn that it is safe to put our needs first. It’s ok fill our cup and refuel my own inner well on all levels. From that place we can give freely, if we wish.

It is so much easier to treat others. It is totally normal when people first learn reiki to want to go out and ‘heal’ everyone, share reiki with anybody but soon we learn that not everyone wants to be on the ‘reiki train’ or to heal. We want to give to others. We want to rescue others. Yet, we might not want to receive, to sit with ourselves during a reiki self practice as this is where the work is – sitting with our mind, our body, our emotions, our beliefs – with all aspects of ourselves. It’s so much easier to treat others as you are not in their body. Yet, how can I share reiki with you or support you to explore your Great Bright Light (reiki) if I’ve never experienced mine.

Brigid by Ruth Sanderson

Identify the Roles

People who come to learn reiki or practice reiki are often over-givers and often the caretakers in their families or friends. They don’t mind giving – they love to give. However, they may not be as good at receiving. It is not about giving less; it’s allowing ourselves to receive more. Just think of the possibilities if we were to receive with the same degree of enthusiam that we give.

We could allow ourselves permission to receive – time for our self practice, self care, time out, compliments, abundance, read an enjoyable book, time to ponder & daydream, time to just sit with a cup of tea, time to listen to music or the birds sing… the list is endless of what you could learn to receive – so what would you like to receive or to give to yourself?

Think about what roles you play in ‘giving & receiving’. Look at the following and see what resonates: 

  • The giver (more than likely over-giver)
  • The independent one (if offered held usual response is ‘I’m fine. I got it covered’ or is often heard muttering to themselves ‘If you want something done right, do it yourself’)
  • Taught it’s better to give than receive
  • If someone gives to you, you must make sure to repay them in some way
  • If you receive or ask for help it’s a sign of weakness or vulnerability

At what cost to yourself does not receiving play in your life?

The beauty of Reiki is that as well as self practice it als gives us a great ability to give with Reiki. Even when we are receiving self-Reiki, we give by healing and empowering ourselves. Even when we share reiki with others, we are receiving reiki ourselves. Reiki has within it the beautiful balance of giving & receiving. We are learning to play with that balance within ourselves.

Shifting the Mind

How much over the last few weeks did you allow yourself to receive? To receive openly and graciously – not with the reluctance that a lot of us do.g

For some of us, we’ve been taught it’s better to give than to receive, even to the point where giving is right and receiving is wrong. You often see ‘for it is in giving that we receive…’only by giving are you able to receive’.. yet I think it depends on our definitions and patterns behind giving and receiving.

I often talk about the ebb and flow of life, how life is a spiral / circular rather than linear which aligns with give and take. It’s not just giving… it’s not just receiving… it’s the cycle of giving and receiving.

The gift of receiving teaches us that everything is interconnected. For one person to receive, someone else has to give. It’s a cycle.

When we are not open to receiving:

  • We take the gift of giving away from others
  • We close ourselves of from the co-creative energies of the universe
  • We are telling ourselves we aren’t enough, good enough, worthy enough to receive
  • We feel we have to go it alone, do it for ourselves
  • We are playing into an old program that in order to receive we have to give
  • We feel we have to be doing something to receive
  • We forget to see that we are ‘receiving‘ life and focus more on getting more out of life

Brigid by Ruth Sanderson

Receiving with reiki

Reiki is given to us—there is nothing we have to do to receive it; we simply have to invite it. We simple have to show up, learn it and then practice it. When we ‘activate’ and invite Reiki, pure Reiki is what shows up—every time. We don’t have to force it, push it out of us, make it do things – it just flows. We don’t even have to know why or how reiki works or have years of experience for it to work. It just does. Somethings can not be explained by the mind but have to be experienced by the heart. Reiki will always flow and provide healing to the receiver, whether that is us or another person.

As mentioned earlier, we receive Reiki as we give it. Reiki empowers our life force as we receive while we give.

We can use the Reiki symbols to focus on receiving. Each symbol brings in specific energy that awakens and strengthens the symbols’ qualities in our spirit and body. We can activate the symbols in our self-Reiki practice and in our treatments with others.

CKR – we receive the light of the divine universe

SHK – we receive the power of the divine mind

HSZSN – we receive the power of the divine heart

DKM – we receive the light of the Great Being of the Universe and the light shines on us and awakens within us.

Adjust the Reiki principles by saying, “Just for today, I will show the level of compassion to myself that I show to others’ or ‘Just for today, I receive….’ or ‘Just for today, I allow myself to receive the blessings from reiki’. Make up your own around receiving. 

Set your intention to receive guidance from your soul about receiving during your reiki self practice. Our self practice is a wonderful space to be and listen to the whispers of our soul. What does it wish to share with your around giving and receiving?

Reiki is a great teacher. Just ask, listen and you will receive.

Brigid by Ruth Sanderson

Practice Receiving

Receive Reiki

You would not believe how many people who I’ve met who have learned reiki but didn’t think they could still receive reiki treatments from someone else. They thought they should be able to do it for themselves. That they shouldn’t need support now as they have reiki. Nothing is further from the truth. We can always receive reiki from other practitioners as it’s a totally different experience. Sometimes, we need the support of an external party to support our self reiki practice, to guide us through a challenging time or we are just exhausted and need to receive! Allow yourself to switch off and receive in your treatment – let your body receive, it knows how to heal and receive exactly what it needs.

Also give yourself permission to receive from your daily reiki self practice or to receive the time to recommit to your self practice. You won’t regret it!

Tap into the feeling of receiving

Whenever someone offers to pay for you, pays a bill, or gives you some kind of gift receive it willingly. Say “thank you” and do not offer to pay instead. Feel into the sensation of receiving by taking a second to breathe in the kindness and the loving feelings it brings up. Breathe this feeling to all parts of your body. (Small note: initially this might uncomfortable if your default is to offer to pay. Just acknowledge that feeling with in and invite the kindness and love of receiving to soften it – invite in Reiki to support you in being open to receiving)

Ask for help, favors and support.

I can easily fall into the ‘do it yourself’ camp so over the last few years I ask for favours and help. It can be as simple as asking someone to hold the door open so you can glide the pushchair in, giving you a hand out with the shopping to the car etc..So start small, simple and ask for help.


When we listen to each word, body language, emotion and take them in – we are receiving.Deep listening is miraculous for both listener and speaker. When someone receives us with open-hearted, non-judging, intensely interested listening, our spirits expand.

Make space for receiving. 

Start small, by receiving a smile or a hug. Get used to receiving and being grateful. Begin to see that receiving can be a way to bless others. We all know how good it feels to give freely. Why do we prevent others from feeling that way when they wish to give to us?

Receive from nature

Nature is abundant and we sometimes forget to see all that we receive from her. Begin to notice all you receive from nature e.g. the sunlight on your skin, the water you drink, the air you breath, hearing the birds sing etc

Receive from the Universe / Spirit

Receiving is following your intuition so you might want to refer back to my newsletter on following your intuition. Slow down, create space, listen and follow the inner whispers and you’ll often find you’ll do less and receive more!

Open your heart

Cherish the fact that other people want to give to you. Until we can receive with an open heart, we’re never really giving with an open heart.

Don’t be keeping score

Have you done this? So and so helped me out, so I ‘have to’ return the favor? Begin to have an eagle view of life and see that life has its way of giving us what we need and that gifts keep going around and around. It balances itself out.

Don’t be disappointed

How often have you given someone something and you can tell by their whole body that they were disappointed. How often have you done this also? Embrace what is being offered, however small, imperfect or not what you expected, and go with what is being given. Remember that people give what they can and they were thinking of you when they chose it.


Journal Prompts for Receiving

Do you find it easy to receive not just gifts but people’s time, payment for your services, affection, compliments, opportunities etc?

What beliefs do you have around receiving? Finish the sentence ‘Receiving is….’ a few times to see what you believe about it. There can be a lot shame, guilt or weakness around receiving depending on our programming.

What did you learn about receiving from your family?

Where in your life are you preventing yourself from receiving?

How can you open yourself to receiving? What will you do next time someone offers you a compliment, offers to pay for lunch, offers you a wonderful opportunity, offers to bring you dinner when you’re not well?

Receive a Reiki Treatment

Would you like to receive a reiki treatment. To give yourself permission and space to heal. To invite in peace and compassion into yourself?

Learn Reiki

Are you drawn to learn reiki to support yourself. To heal yourself and get to know yourself in a whole new way?