5 ways to cleanse your crystals sustainably

In this day and age where coaches and healers are popping up left and right, spirituality is hip and happening and we can get all our spiritual needs at big chains like Urban Outfitters/Anthropologie/etc. -a good development, we’re waking up!- it is good to be mindful about using something just because it’s ‘spiritual’. What do I mean exactly by this? I’ll explain in a bit.

Now before I start with the different ways that you can cleanse your crystals (or your crystal grid art), I want to shine some light on a little something. Crystals are ancient, formed in the earth over years and years and their energy is strong and pure. In some cases a darker energy can ‘stick’ to a crystal, this does not take away from its deep strength and own vibration. Often times when we feel a crystal isn’t ‘clean’ anymore, it can be the case that it is you who is in a lower energy. So when you have the urge to cleanse a crystal, take an extra moment to check in with yourself and see if maybe it is you who needs some loving energy. Usually that can already make a big difference.

 

 

When, after checking in with yourself first, you still feel like you want to cleanse your crystals this is what you can do:

  • Smudging

    The common ways to cleanse crystals is by using the smoke of white sage or palo santo. Right now these plants are being overharvested. Palo Santo is originally harvested from a tree that naturally dies and falls to the earth, however, this is not the case anymore. As demand is going up, suppliers are trying to keep up. And same goes for white sage, which is now an at risk species.

    Luckily for us, there are other plants that also contain these cleansing properties that are much more readily available to us. So instead of buying white sage or palo santo, next time try out: mugwort (grows in the wild in NL), rosemary, common sage, desert sage, lavender, pine or cedar. You can even try out growing white sage yourself, which would be the most sustainable. So please be mindful of these beautiful plants and get creative with your new options! (maybe create your own smudge stick and combine them!)

    When smudging you burn your plant of choice and hold your crystal in the smoke. You can also smudge yourself or anything else, by blowing the smoke on what you want to have cleansed (with your hand or with a feather).

  • The moon

    Every full moon you can place your crystals (or crystal grid) outside or in your windowsill where they can bathe in the full moonlight. Giving them a reset and fully cleansing them. Don’t worry when you miss the exact night, the nights before and after the full moon are also very potent in energy.

  • Earth

    If you have a garden you can bury your crystals in the earth for a day and a night. Especially handy with tumble stones, I wouldn’t recommend this for clusters as they can get dirty, are harder to clean and the crystals in clusters can be more easily damaged. Make sure to mark your spot so you know where to dig once the time has passed! I really like this way of cleansing the crystals as it brings you in contact with the earth, makes your hands dirty and returns them to our Pacha mama.

  • Water

    Be careful with this way of cleansing as some crystals dissolve in water. A simple google search with the name of your crystal + water will clear this up for you. You can hold crystals under running water from your sink (be mindful of the amount of water because this too can be unsustainable), dip them in ocean water or hold them in a little river. This will wash away any negative energy that was still attached to them. Also nice to have as a practice for yourself; washing your hands when you would like to cleanse your energy after a loaded encounter/moment.

  • Energy

    When you have a Reiki or energy healing practice it’s fun to play around with cleansing your crystals using energy. Visualize your crystal(s) in a big white light that dissolves any dark or sticky matter. And send the negative energy back into the earth.

 

Have fun trying out these cleansing practices! We are all different, so some practices may speak to you more or than others, give yourself the space to discover. Remember that cleansing your crystals is a sacred ritual, and treat it so. Take the time to connect to yourself and your crystals, possibly set an intention and approach it mindfully. This is not something you want to rush through.

With love,
Caressa

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Getting over the fear of starting

This is a big one – around me, I hear a lot of people say that they wish they dared to go after their dreams or have the guts to start something of their own. Now I can talk about this topic from first-hand experience!

Years ago, I was studying at the school of the arts. Everywhere I looked there were insanely talented people, how I even got in was a bit of a mystery to me sometimes. I felt enormous pressure. If I was going through this whole thing, that would mean I HAD to become an artist. How would there be space for my art with all these incredibly skilled and creative people around me? Only a few lucky ones really make it – right? I felt so much fear and it became harder and harder for me to create things. Nearing the end of my first year I had convinced myself; art is more of a hobby to me, it won’t be my job. So better quit now and focus on something ‘real’.

 

 

I stopped studying, took a year off to make money, travel and re-evaluate my life. Now the funny thing here is that in this year I stumbled upon the inspiration of what would, later on, become my crystal grids! During this year I, without really realizing it, started making so much. I was writing every day, made a chakra wand with crystals, created a dreamcatcher from scratch with feathers I found on my travels. I did all these creative things effortlessly because the pressure was off.

What I’m getting at here is that sometimes when we start creating something, we take it so seriously. Especially when you have put a lot of resources into it. And I understand,  I do it too. But one thing that I have learned in this lifetime is that creativity needs space, movement, playfulness. My best creative ideas came to me in moments of casual conversation with friends …or pure boredom! All we need to do is to stay curious and open. As Elizabeth Gilbert says: ‘’Take it seriously, sure – but don’t take it seriously.’’

The moment my creative journey really started was the moment I got an injury that took me from moving my body or even walking the stairs for that matter. I really had to sit still and organically -like magic- I started creating. As a means of moving, flowing in another way. I started creating because there was space. I started creating because I simply felt like it. And I sure as hell didn’t start creating because I wanted to do this for a living for the rest of my life. But life works in funny and mysterious ways, and the Caressa that said ‘’art is more of a hobby to me’’ 3 years prior, was very much mistaken. Because when ‘the burden of the world’ melted, I let go of fear, creativity returned and ironically, I became an artist after all. This was always my destination.

 

 

Does this mean the only thing I do now is create art? – No. I still teach yoga, I host workshops and retreats. To start something doesn’t mean to stop another thing. See where life takes you organically, make space for the things that matter to you. You don’t have to quit your day job immediately, don’t put that pressure on yourself but just start playing. I switched from studying fulltime to part-time because I wanted to make space to flow with the opportunities coming up in the other aspects of my life. This is what brought me joy. That was my balance. What is yours?

Some great further reading on this topic is: Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. — My most favorite book ever. This will change your world.


How to choose a crystal

This is the moment! You’ve heard about crystals or maybe have already had a taste of their powers and feel a big pull to invite them into your life. Amazing! But now comes the big question... ‘‘How do I pick a crystal that best suits me?’’. I get asked this question a lot and understand why, picking a crystal can be an overwhelming task at first! There are so many beautiful crystals to choose from, and also, places to get them. But no worries, I’m here to help guide you through this process step by step.

 

 

I would like to start off by telling you that you are so much wiser than you might think. You already have all the wisdom within you, I’m just here as a reminder.

My personal preference is to visit a crystal shop. This will allow you to hold each crystal and tune into its energy. If this isn’t possible for you right now, there are a few great online shops as well to get your crystals from. At the bottom of this post, I will list a few of my favorite places, online and offline. The tools from this post are best applied in a shop, but you can still use this guide for choosing crystals online too.

Step 1 - Check in

Check in with yourself. Take 3 deep breaths. How are you feeling? What is moving through you? It’s necessary to take a moment to connect to the body, to silence the mind and make space for our intuition to be heard.

Step 2 - Glance

Take a quick glance through the shop, try and return to your breath and see where you’re naturally drawn to. The body knows what you need. Are there crystals that immediately catch your eye? Go there.

Step 3 – Pick

Sometimes it can feel like you’re just magnetically pulled back to a crystal over and over, or you catch your eyes just looking at the same crystal again and again. This is a sign! If you just think that a crystal is really pretty when picking it, that’s okay too. There’s a reason behind why you think it’s pretty. The way I see it, that’s the universe luring you to the crystal you need. Don’t overthink it.

Step 4 - Hold

When you’ve picked a crystal or two, hold each crystal in your hand. Maybe place it to your heart and check in. Again, the mind can step in here, when you feel this happening take a deep breath and bring all your awareness to your hand holding the crystal. Notice what feeling arises. Does it feel heavy or just empty? – this isn’t the one. Does it feel light, warm or good, do you feel a connection? – this is your crystal.

Step 5 – Decide

When you’re torn between two crystals but only want one, hold one in each hand. Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and ask yourself ‘’which crystal do I need’’. Trust what arises! You know. Your body knows.

Step 6 – Lessons

Don’t forget to write down or remember the name of the crystal to look up what kind of energy it carries, this can be so much fun! Grab your favorite crystal book or search the name online and see what lesson this crystal is showing you.

Even though I strongly encourage you to try and pick a crystal this way, as this will help you further develop and trust in your intuition, It is also possible to start with the last step and work your way up. If there is a certain theme in your life that you would like some support in you can see which crystals are compatible. There are some great books out there to help you with this, my personal favorite is Crystals for healing by Karen Frazier

 

 

So where do I go now?

• Stenelux and De Roos – Both beautiful shops in Amsterdam

• House of formlab – Online shop with beautifully curated crystals and other spiritual items.

The Spirit Junkies - An amazing online shop with loads of beautiful crystals to choose from.


How to keep your online space a happy place

Confession time! I spend a lot of my time on instagram. Being a small bussiness owner it’s a wonderful tool to connect with others and share what I do. But because of this, I sometimes stay on the app longer than I’d have to.

Knowing this, I started rethinking what I’d like my online space to look like. Was it a place that brought me joy? Were the people on there inspiring me? Or were they on there just as a courtesy because we took the same class 10 years ago?

 

 

I started making hard cuts. This was MY online space, no one elses. Every single person that wouldn’t bring me joy -even if they were ‘inspirational yoga people’- had to go! A cleanse à la Marie Kondo.

Now, I myself unfollow, but if this step is one too big for you just yet; instagram has the option to ‘mute’ someone. If you go to their profile and click on the 3 dots you’ll find it there. You’ll still be there as a ‘follower’ but their messages won’t show up in your space anymore.

For me the first people to go where; models, ‘influencers’, fitness accounts, old acquaintances (sorry, not sorry), companies that I would maybe buy a bikini off of one day and just people I didn’t vibe with anymore. For a few weeks everytime I scrolled on instagram I asked myself ‘does this account bring me joy?’. More and more, with every unfolllow, it became a place that truly brought me joy .

Right now my online space is filled with artists, close friends, musicians with a message, modern mystics, authentic yoga teachers, creatives of all sorts, inspirational speakers and brands with a sustainable mission. So whenever I enter this online space, there is close to no ‘junk’, nothing that makes me feel less, nothing that -if I’m being honest- really doesn’t interest me and nothing ‘stealing’ my sacred time. Instead when I go there it’s exactly the message I needed to hear, it’s a friend that does something that makes me proud of them and it’s an artwork that inspires me to pick up my brush. I can’t tell you how many times being on ‘the gram’ has led to creating art for me. Because there’s just so many damn people that inspire me to create too!

So let me challenge you!

Today, when you’re scrolling through instagram.. unfollow! Anyone who doesn’t serve you in this space you can let go of. Actually, let me rephrase; Anyone who doesn’t serve you in this space YOU ARE ALLOWED TO UNFOLLOW! Really. And if it feels good, keep doing it. Keep doing it until it’s a sacred space to you. See how you can make this online space work FOR you instead of AGAINST you.

Also be mindful of your clicks and scrolls, the algorithm is designed to show you more of what you are giving your attention to. So don’t spend your precious time on your ex’s instagram page, instead, spend it on (and comment/like) the accounts that inspire you.

And note that it is OKAY to enjoy your time on Instagram, it is a wonderful platform that lets us share what brings us joy and lights up our hearts. You’re not a mindless endorphin junkie for enjoying your time online. Feeling joy when using the app may also be a sign that you are, in fact, using it correctly. It’s not always one big scam, and it’s up to us to be mindful of the time we spend online and regularly check in with our feelings, needs and desires.

With love,
Caressa