A simple practice to shield yourself energetically when you’re feeling vulnerable

During yesterday’s solar eclipse here in Williamsburg, VA, the moon covered about 80% of the sun at the peak. Fortunately, a friend had given me an extra pair of eclipse glasses, so I was able to watch it safely. This got me thinking about all sorts of tools we can use for protection, including the subtle energetic tools our minds have at their disposal to help keep us safe. 

For some people, this is an especially critical piece of self-care. A lot of my clients are highly sensitive and/or empaths (I am too), which means, among other things, that we tend to soak up other people’s emotions and energies. 

This can be pleasant when you’re around calm, peaceful, centered people. But if you’ve ever been in the presence of someone who’s feeling angry and rageful, it can be extremely overwhelming. 

Hours or even days later, you might still feel that anger-energy vibrating within you, unless you take deliberate steps to protect yourself in the moment and later release any residual energy from your mind & body. 

So today, I want to share with you my own daily practice for shielding energetically, so you can experiment and find your own ways of protecting yourself from being negatively affected by other people’s energy.

(You might also want to learn how to create a daily clearing practice to release any energy you accidentally pick up that doesn’t belong to you.) 

A daily shielding practice

My personal shielding practice derives from an ancient Celtic prayer of protection called a caimIn Irish Gaelic, the word caim means “sanctuary,” “protection,” and “circle,” all at once. The practice is simply this: draw an invisible protective circle around yourself. 

Here’s how I do it: 

At the beginning of each workday, I sit in my workspace and take a deep breath. Then I use my hands to draw an imaginary circle around me, about 3 feet in diameter. 

I imagine the circle extending up and down like a transparent shield, clear and steady. I try to feel this circle around me as vividly as I can, imbuing it with energy and strength.

Then I imagine spiritual allies surrounding me and my caim circle, adding strength and protection–the spirits I partner with in my shamanic work, and the many spiritual ancestors from whom I draw inspiration. 

When my circle feels strong and I feel peaceful, I’m ready to start the day. 

Why I do this practice:

For better or worse, I’m pretty sensitive to other people’s energy, even at a distance. 

When I began my private practice working with clients, I realized very quickly that I would need to become more visible on the internet than I had ever been before. The “let’s do this!!” part of me was all for it, but I soon discovered that a shyer, quieter part of me was very nervous about being so visible to strangers. 

It felt very vulnerable, imagining people I had never met landing on my website, connecting with the energy of my practice, and feeling all sorts of ways about it. I felt almost like I personally was on display, for all the world to see. And that shy part of me wanted to hide, big time. 

That’s when I developed this caim shielding practice–a transparent energetic shield that could let me be seen, but not harmed or invaded, so I could show up online as fully as I wanted to.  

I also try to use this practice whenever I encounter someone whose energy feels harmful to me. Even just tracing a circle on the palm of my hand can help me feel safe and protected.  

How you can make this practice your own:

First, consider the situations in your own life that leave you feeling vulnerable to other people’s energy. When does that happen? Where are you? What’s happening around you? 

Then, begin to experiment with drawing your own caim circle around you whenever it feels right to you. Maybe at the start of your day, or any time you’re feeling uneasy or flustered. You might choose to say a brief prayer (use whatever words feel right to you) or just sense the energy of your circle.

You can also imagine strengthening your circle in whatever way feels right to you. Maybe you’ll imagine gathering allies around your circle to help protect you, as I do. Or planting a circle of trees around it, or whatever images and energies speak most to you. 

Other shielding techniques:

If this caim practice doesn’t speak to you, there are many other practices to help you shield and protect yourself from other people’s unhelpful energies. Here are a couple of articles with additional ideas: 

How about you? I’d love to hear about your own personal shielding practices. Please drop me a note if you’d like to share!

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