Imelda as a young teenager

Of course I could be clever with words and title this blog “CURE THE CURSE’ but today I want to get across a message about the way we all curse ourselves and often we don’t even know it.  Basically this article is a plea for greater awareness and a commitment to a higher level of spiritual hygiene. I would also like to ‘dispel the myth that all things negative originate with other people’. I am a great advocate of doing shadow work and owning our ‘shadow material’!

Last week I wrote a blog titled “DIAGNOSIS OR CURSE?!”   It continues to get a large number of views every day, so clearly it struck some kind of chord. So let’s take things one step further today: if we accept that our ill chosen words can harm others, and that words chosen intentionally to cause harm can curse others, let’s ask the following question: do/can we harm ourselves by the thoughts we send ourselves?

If you know how to meditate or if you know how to do a shamanic journey, ask Spirit the following question:

“Please show me how and when I have cursed myself – and how to unravel these curses!” Ideally do this before you read any further!

Speaking from my own experience I know that from a very young age we engage in self-talk. Our monkey mind thrives in the jungle of “unfocused and unchecked repetitive thinking”. Unless we study Zen Buddhism or train as yoga masters  a human lifespan can easily pass without us ever reflecting on the nature of this ‘non stop dialogue (combat) with ourselves’.

To give an example from my own life: when I was a teenager I really believed I was so ugly that it hurt other people to look at me. (I have since done a lot of work on myself, and I mean inner work, not employed a cosmetic surgeon!) What I know for a fact is that I spent years sending myself negative thoughts along the lines of: ‘why would anyone want to be friends with me? No one will ever fall in love with me? – I better look people straight in the eye so they do not see my crooked nose in profile’. You may laugh but those thoughts truly circled in my head for years. Even as a 14 year old I was aware of those thoughts draining and undermining me, so I started ‘changing the tune’, deliberately. Instead I started telling myself: ‘Thankfully I am no great beauty, but at least the people who love me, love me for myself, not for my looks!” There were some compensations in the form of me being very academically and artistically gifted – so that allowed me to gain a foothold ‘on another mountain slope’. Meaning that I could preserve and build self esteem in those areas of my life. And maybe that is what ‘saved me’ – I don’t know!

The question I am really posing is this: what if I had not ‘changed the tune’ at age 13-14 or thereabouts and I had kept on sending myself daily messages to the effect of : ‘No one will ever want to be my friend’ and ‘No will ever fall in love with me and father the children I want so badly’ (at age 14 that was already a major concern. Children were at the top of my wish list even then!) Could this have shaped my life?

And today my answer is: yes, certainly! In my shamanic healing sessions with clients we stumble across (and then unravel) many beliefs that have shaped people’s lives and life choices. And those beliefs and messages can lead their own lives just below the horizon, so we are barely aware of them, we are only aware that we are stuck in self-defeating patterns. That every time we fall in love – the person doesn’t fancy us back.  That every time we’d like to make friends, the person concerned hasn’t much time for us. I am just following the pattern of my own teenage angst here. Obviously such internalized deep-seated messages can refer to a very wide spectrum of behaviors/patterns and repeat disappointments.

The good news is that in shamanism there is a practice called ‘curse unraveling’. I will go back to my previous blog for a moment and repeat my own (homegrown) definition of a curse (and I really don’t like the word ‘curse’, I prefer the words ‘energetic imprint’ or ‘longstanding pattern’)

“An energetic imprint set in motion that brings lasting harm or ill fortune to a person, family or place until it is unraveled, dissolved and transmuted for once and for all”

 So once we are aware that there is such a thing as “cursing ourselves” (harming ourselves by repeatedly affirming harmful thoughts or beliefs) we can do two things: we can decide to commit to something I like calling ‘spiritual hygiene’ in sessions with clients. Just as you brush your teeth twice a day, be mindful of your own thoughts a few times a day. If you catch yourself in the act of something “low vibration”, stop in your tracks, call the thought back and rephrase it with a strong intention for transmutation.

Even today I have the occasional ‘uncharitable thought’ about my own body – but the moment I catch myself ‘in flagrante’ as it were, I use my imagination to see that thought transformed into blessings (i.e. I pop the speech balloon with those words in it and beautiful golden stars rain down) and I follow this up by thanking my body for all the ways it serves me and allows me to have amazing experiences in this world.  So what if I am not photo model material – my body is healthy and my looks do not distract me or my clients/students from the work I really need to do – GREAT!!!

So my suggestion today (if you have read this far) is that you start putting some attention on the ways in which you harm yourself by sending yourself negative messages. Then make the decision to rephrase those message as I described.

And the other thing you can do is ask your spirit allies to show you (in meditation, contemplation, in a shamanic journey) where you have cursed yourself. And then ask them to start unraveling those ‘imprints’. And if things get too overwhelming or too complex – do yourself a favor and book an appointment with a good shamanic practitioner.

And if you find it hard to remember to do this – link it to brushing your teeth!

Clean your teeth twice day (three times a day if you can manage it, my dentist recommends!) and clean you own mind and inner landscape while you are at it.

See your dentist twice a year and see your shamanic practitioner when the jungle of your own thoughts becomes too dense or hostile.

Good luck and let me know how you get on!

 Imelda Almqvist

Imelda Almqvist is a shamanic practitioner, teacher and painter based in London, UK