Guest Blog Written By Lisa Erickson
Interest in the chakras, reiki, and energy healing has exploded in recent years, with many of us turning to these modalities for greater wellness and empowerment. What isn’t as widely covered is how women’s energy bodies differ from men’s.
Rochelle was a new massage therapist having trouble managing enough clients per day to pay her bills, as she felt drained after just two sessions.
Lauren was a health-conscious yoga practitioner who suffered debilitating fatigue during her period each month.
Beth was a long-time meditator, but after the birth of her first child found her usual meditation practices provided no relief from post-partum anxiety.
Shari was a 50-year old woman struggling with perimenopausal symptoms, and questioning everything she had done in her life.
What do all these women have in common? They all were experiencing shifts in their energy bodies but didn?t know how to work with them. While an increasing number of resources help us connect with our primary energy centers, or chakras, most of the time chakra mappings are presented as the same for men and women. But there are differences in how women?s energy bodies function that any woman can benefit from knowing. While at the spiritual level the energy moving through us is ungendered, at the interface between the chakras and the body there are differences that mirror the physical differences between men and women. These patterns are on a spectrum, and so trans and pan gender individuals will often experience the chakra patterns associated with the gender they most strongly identify with, or aspects of both.
The most important difference is that women’s energy bodies are anchored in their second chakra, while men’s are anchored in their first. Because the second chakra is receptive in nature, women’s energy bodies tend to be more centripetal, pulling in and absorbing other’s energies. This anchoring in the second chakra also means women’s energy bodies are more adaptable and fluid, which can be a good thing when in a positive environment, but it means women need to pay more attention to energetic boundaries in daily life.
Take the example of the masseuse Rochelle from above. She couldn’t understand why she felt so drained after just a couple of clients. The issue was energetic, not physical she was unconsciously taking on energy from her clients. This was partially due to the empathic tendency of the feminine energy body but also based on personal conditioning like many women, Rochelle had patterns of people-pleasing that caused her to open up her energy body in ways she didn’t need to. After learning to work with her root and navel chakras to create a simple, but effective energetic boundary, Rochelle was able to change this tendency, and work with clients successfully without draining herself.
Women’s energy bodies also experience cycles and phases in sync with menstruation, pregnancy, perimenopause, and menopause. For example, a woman’s second chakra waxes and wanes with her monthly cycle, at its strongest and most emanating at the peak of ovulation, and at its most sensitive and inward-facing during menstruation. While most women can’t organize their lives around their cycle, making even small accommodations can be helpful. For Lauren, the yoga practitioner who experienced extreme fatigue, allowing herself extra rest time and additional focus on her navel chakra during menstruation helped her to reduce the fatigue and enabled her to tap into the deep contemplative energies available to her during this time.
Post-partum is another life phase in which women can benefit from understanding the energetic shifts occurring. Like Beth, mentioned above, even women with good support and self-care routines can find themselves struggling after birth. Not only is a woman dealing with physical fatigue and hormonal shifts, her energy body is adjusting to an additional energy line in the form of the mother-child bond. Because the sacral chakra is a woman’s energy body anchor and mother-child lines are centered there, post-partum a woman may feel as if she can’t access her upper chakras, with all of her energy pooled downward. Tools to help close the mother-child line when needed, while still maintaining a healthy loving parental bond, are key to a woman’s post-partum physical and mental well-being.
Perimenopause the years preceding menopause when a woman is beginning to transition to menopause is characterized by energy surges through the chakras linked to personal growth. Each chakra has particular lessons associated with it and depending on where a women’s greatest obstructions to owning her power lies, she may experience discomfort in her body or psyche as these attempt to clear. For example, Shari from the intro found herself feeling adrift and unfulfilled in her career, in addition to experiencing insomnia and nightly hot flashes. Once she was able to identify her feelings and use chakra tools to stabilize her energy body, she was able to smooth the shifts as they were occurring. As this unfolded she found herself contemplating a change in career that felt positive and empowering, and her menopause process from that point was physically and psychologically smooth.
Because the sacral chakra is linked to sexual energy and is also the anchor for a woman’s energy body, sexual abuse and assault can have a particularly damaging impact to a woman’s sense of her own power, and all of her chakra functions. Gentle chakra work to clear shame, fear, patterns of hypervigilance and disassociation can be an excellent modality for sexual trauma survivors intimidated by the idea of physical bodywork, or of talk therapy or can be a complementary modality.
The wonderful thing about chakra work is that anyone can engage in it, and there are multiple access points. Some people like visualization, others physical methods like sound or gemstones, and others affirmations or emotional memory work. Everyone can find a connection point with their chakras, and once they do, can work with them anywhere, anytime. For women, understanding these differences in their chakras and energy body functioning in daily life can help unlock the full potential of their self-healing and manifesting abilities.
Lisa Erickson is an energy worker specializing in women?s energetics and sexual trauma healing and author of Chakra Empowerment for Women: Self-Guided Techniques for Healing Trauma, Owning Your Power & Finding Overall Wellnessfrom Llewellyn Publishing.