The Healer’s Journey: From Healing to Thriving

Editor’s Note: To listen to and read past conversations with Elisa Novick on Planet Waves, please use this link. We’ll be publishing an article by Elisa each Sunday evening. You’re invited to visit her website and Facebook page. — Amanda

I wrote the following article for two reasons. One I would call a delicious delineation, meaning that to distill these understandings out of 30 years of practice is yummy for me (I guess my enjoyment of food is showing in my metaphors). The other has to do with the difficulty I’ve had in describing what I do.

Elisa Novick; photo by Eric.

If I say I am a healer or that I do counseling, it seems inevitable that people assume they have to have an issue or a problem to work on every session. We look for what is ‘wrong’, where the suffering is, what is not working out, and we want relief. I’m not judging this. Relief is, after all, so relieving, and can lead to great learning.

The good news is that the suffering brings people into a process the soul and all of our cheerleaders in Spirit are delighted to have us engage in anyway. But I want my clients to know that it is fine to say, “everything is going well right now.” Then the next level appears and we are going for the good stuff. Wouldn’t it be grand then to say, “I am here to refine my attunement, to develop mastery and know myself as a Grand Cosmic Being?” What if we upped our game like that? Hmm.

I still have not been able to find one word that adequately — and I hope beautifully — covers all of the stages I describe in the article below. (Maybe you will have suggestions.) The result is my ridiculously long run-on sentences and my need to say so much. Thank goodness Eric gives me the time and the room to indulge that need and that you care enough to read and respond! I look forward to your comments.

From Healing to Thriving

Here’s what thrills me as a healer — when I see the soul come sparkling through a person’s eyes. I don’t know exactly what a soul is or how the soul causes the eyes to sparkle, but when I see it, I know it. The more the soul comes through a person, the greater is her or his potential for a life of joy, loving, mastery, and a higher level of knowledge (inner knowing) and ability.

There are other signs: a radiance, tension lines softened, a sense of greater presence and personal power. Creative solutions to previously insurmountable problems appear, quite effortlessly. What makes this so precious is that often it happens on the heels of the release of some ancient holding pattern, one that might have been causing suffering or limitation for many years, lifetimes or generations.

How do we get to that place? Through becoming someone we are already inside, but have not known how to reach. It has been called by various names — the soul, true self, essence, divine nature. It takes dedication to manifest that part of us as us, but it’s worth it. There are myriad ways to approach. Here is some of what I’ve learned about the process.

Essential Aspects of Healing and Becoming Whole

The healing-maturation process always comprises certain steps or aspects, all necessary for human life to thrive. They don’t necessarily take place in any orderly fashion, though for most, the cleansing process usually begins first, because we have this marvelous tendency to want to be out of suffering. Suffering is what drives most people into the healing process. But we cannot be whole unless all the steps are taken.

With all that we have experienced in our lives, there is no growth that does not include cleansing the consciousness of old wounds, painful memories, familial patterns, negative habits. Often the body also needs to come into balance and the diet cleaned up as part of the healing process.

Some try to bypass this step of cleansing, believing that with enough positive affirmation and meditation or good works it is unnecessary, but I’ve never met anyone who did not need to go through this part of the process at some point in their journey. On the other hand, this does not have to be daunting. It is usually scarier to contemplate than to go through. It can actually be characterized by profound depth of feeling, rich insight and great relief.

Strengthening. Just letting go of old patterns is not enough; we have to gain strength, and change those things that do not work for us. We have to learn to take really good care of ourselves and to act from integrity. An important part of this process is coming into alignment with that which is truer and closer to our essential nature or soul, that part of us which is loving, wise, gorgeous and joyful. As we leave behind the old personality — made up for the most part of reactive, learned and programmed behaviors — and align to a higher vision or frequency, we step into the magnificence which has been there all along, and begin to take charge of our lives.

Connecting. We are not on this Earth to be hermits; we are here to learn through relationship. Relationships give us valuable feedback about who we are and what we still have to work on. In all our relationships we have the opportunity to give and receive love, to practice aligning our actions and emotions with the truth as we perceive it, and to hone our life skills. Moreover, we can come together with others to create and re-create our world.

Within such a group, we discover that we access profound understanding and unique abilities that might never show up when we are alone. At the highest level, when we come into a oneness or communion of spirit with others without sacrificing our authentic, sovereign selves, we can create new blueprints for a healed and thriving planet. We become that which we desire to see in the world, and the world begins to respond to the more coherent energetic blueprint.

This is another phenomenon that brings me great joy — when the members of a group come into exquisite alignment with one another in consciousness, and spiritual awareness becomes present in the group. In this space we become a whole, a being that is greater than the individual parts, able to ‘download’ fresh inspiration, to be of service, to provide loving support, and to do great work beyond anything we can accomplish as individuals.

Service. It is in service that our true beauty comes shining through. We long to be fully utilized in service, to feel that what we do matters. Once we have learned how to fill our own cups to overflowing, then we want to give of the overflow. When we can call ourselves forth in loving service, even if those we serve cannot thank us, the spirit inside can flood us with joy and gratitude. That is when we know ourselves as loving, spiritual beings. That is when we are illuminated from within.

Transcendence. When we transcend, we move up, we move beyond where we have been. We find that many of the things that caused us great disturbance now cannot move us or may even bring laughter. We have proved that we can handle the lessons that have been presented to us, and we can now move into a greater arena.

Any one of these steps can initiate change on any of the other levels. For instance, a cleansing fast or a chiropractic adjustment can raise the vibration enough to uplift the emotions and give us greater spiritual access. Forgiveness can initiate a cleansing of disease or allow the person to become available for greater success and prosperity. And family constellation work can relieve the collective unconscious for many with similar issues.

We need patience and perseverance, because change takes time to integrate, and maturation is lifelong. A single powerful experience may give us a huge boost, but much of the process consists of incremental steps as we move into deeper or more subtle layers and also allow those around us to update with the changes we are making. Fortunately, these explorations are so fascinating and rewarding that we will never be bored.

Systemic Healing

We do not exist in a vacuum. We are part of many interwoven relational systems, and so for healing to be truly holistic, we must also work systemically. Each of us belongs to various communities, including our close relationships, our families, the groups, businesses and institutions in which we participate, and the larger social, political, ethnic, ecological and planetary systems. We carry within us the memories of our lives and our ancestors, as well as species memory.

Whether you call it an intersubjective field, or social intelligence, or cosmic consciousness, the fact is we are connected, and so healing is sharing, is service, and is necessary to our continuance and evolution on this planet.

What’s remarkable about systemic healing is that when a person or small group comes to resolution within the system, it ripples out to all of the members of the system and the system as a whole. You might, for instance, bring an issue to resolution that has been plaguing you, which tracks back in your family for generations, and then go home to discover that the behavior of members of your family has changed. (I believe that the healing moves back in time as well as forward.) Or that the revelations brought forth within your group are now changing the world’s paradigms. Welcome to wonder!

Elisa Novick, MSS does profound work as a healer, teacher, counselor, coach, minister, and facilitator of workshops and trainings in personal, professional, and spiritual development. She can assist you to clear personal, karmic and genetic patterns that have limited you and teach you exquisite attunement skills so you can become the magnificent master of life and Light that all of us are destined to be. Elisa has been assisting people in their growth since 1982 through her counseling practice and in facilitating over 1,000 workshops in holistic health, human development, family constellation, systemic constellation, organizational dynamics, planetary healing and spiritual awareness.

21 thoughts on “The Healer’s Journey: From Healing to Thriving”

  1. Thank you, dear sweet Hugging! Gosh, am feeling the warmth – feels as if some burden has been lifted (also the other worries). And I’m sure my family are getting it too. This place is magical.

  2. Thank you so much, dearest Susan! Am feeling so much better thanks to you guys. I’m glad you got to work with Elisa, must have been wonderful.

  3. Huffy, I’m so sorry to hear this. Please accept my warmest wishes to you and your family. Lottsa hugs and strength,

  4. Hi Liz,
    I wish you and your family all the best. Doing my light support from here ~~~~ {{{hug}}}
    Also, I know finances don’t allow right now, but Elisa does excellent Skype. I’ve only done one so far, but it was a very effective hour of exploration and healing. Can’t wait until I can actually go up there for some in-person time.
    TTFN, Susan

  5. Thanks so much sweet Sarah – so comforted by your words. My dad is as strong as an ox, thank god, and the latest news is that they’ll be fitting him with a pacemaker so he should be out soon. Some good might come of this in that he might finally realize that he can’t carry on alone…

  6. Elisa, this is perfectly written. Words are perspective, like the vanishing point on a city street that allows the buildings and objects to relate to each other in a coherent way, or like turning the lens to focus a camera; that’s what this piece does. It gives language to process, putting life and growth into perspective, making sense of the chaos, bringing order to the sometimes chaos of sights, sound and experience we find on the journey. These words are a reference point. Thanks, so much, for posting it.

  7. Dearest Elisa, my father had a heart attack yesterday and they’re going to fit him with a pacemaker (he had a quadruple bypass 3 years ago). The problem is, my mother has dementia and can’t be left alone at home, and I live in another country (there’s my sister though), it’s all really complicated. It’s what I feared would happen as he’s under constant pressure, looking after my mother. Ah – such is life… Sorry if I write this here, dear Elisa – but in writing to you I also know that I’m connecting with something very big indeed, which gives me great comfort. Thank you for being here. Liz

  8. ElizArpeggio.

    [from Wikipedia] … a musical technique where notes in a chord are played or sung in sequence, one after the other, rather than ringing out simultaneously. This word comes from the Italian word “arpeggiare”, which means “to play on a harp.” An alternate translation of this term is “broken chord.”


  9. Thank you, Elisa – between your posts and Sarah’s tarot readings, Sundays are pretty special here at PW. With gratitude to you!

  10. Dear Elisa,

    What a balm for my weary self! thank you for sharing your wisdom with me, with us. I count myself very fortunate to be a part of this community and know the warmth of this connection, this network of likeminded souls come to master the way.

    We’ve talked, you and I, and I hope to do so again soon. The $$ aspect remains a challenge and as I search for ways to afford your services, I hope that I can perhaps help others in this process of “downsizing” the outer personality to uncover who we are, whole and know true freedom.

    My very best love and gratitude,

  11. So lovely, Elisa!

    I don’t know if this is the right word you seek, but it is what came to mind – metamorphosis.

    We are butterflies. Our purpose is to joyfully be ourselves, but we’re often stuck in those not very pretty stages of transformation, seeing only the ugliness within, not the inherent beauty about to burst forth.

    Maybe if we focused on that bit of cobalt blue wing peeping out of our shell, we’d feel its beauty and not look back.

  12. This is the true meaning of “organic”!

    This needs rolling out to our world but I love how it begins with personal cleansing and how that is related to disturbances and corrections in the energy field.. I love how you emphasise hodily equilibrium too, Elisa.

    For those who say “amen” but do not know how to begin or, essentially, self-heal, what might be the role of any kind of surrendering prayer or request for illumination/guidance?

    Many thanks for this clear and powerful outline of the elements of wholeness.. let’s do it!

  13. Ps and you give a totally brilliant description of the healing journey, in fact I think From healing to thriving is the perfect title, though it isn’t one word…

  14. Dearest Elisa, your piece has come at such a timely moment – it is like an answer to a prayer.An old, very scary situation is repeating itself in my life at the moment – but I’m dealing with it in a different way – and it’s as if I have to find myself in this dark place again, in order to finally see and heal ancient holding patterns. And I also know that the task is so big because of the family, generational stuff I’m carrying. It’s as if my healing journey is also partly healing my family, in fact I couldn’t believe it when I read these words
    “You might, for instance, bring an issue to resolution that has been plaguing you, which tracks back in your family for generations, and then go home to discover that the behavior of members of your family has changed”. Thank you so much for this piece, dear Elisa, it helps give me strength and resolve to carry it through. We are truly blessed to have you here.

  15. It’s been a tough last few years in my world but things are clearer and better, and I feel very good. Honestly, just this afternoon I was thinking, “It is time to thrive and not just survive.” Imagine my delight when I arrived at Planet Waves this evening and found your helpful and positive article. Coincidence or synchronicity? Who knows, but in any case, thank you, and may I please also join your cheerleaders in spirit?

  16. Elisa: Thank you. This piece today will occupy my thoughts, and find its way into my conversations for some time to come. Cannot recall anybody else pulling together this subject matter in this way, yet it feels familiar somehow. Could be that is part of what you were getting at by becoming what one already is inside, recognizing the truth in what you have written for today. Beyond finding and lucidly stating the truth, however, is the way you have organized it, not unlike a tree, with a flow from ground to sky, sky to ground, and connecting through live-giving exchange with other beings. Wow. Please, will you accept me among your cheerleaders in spirit?

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