Clearing The Channel – A Case Study

People often ask what I mean by “clearing the channel.” In the Happy Calories Don’t Count world, we view ourselves as a conduit for energy – physical energy, mental energy, emotional energy, and spiritual energy. Rather than focus on what or how much we eat, or what or how much we do for exercise, we focus on keeping the conduit that is us open so that energy can move freely and effectively through us. Calories are simply a unit of energy, and instead of obsessing over how many calories we eat or burn through exercise – which only addresses the physical calories – we work to align ourselves so that all of our energies are flowing effectively and efficiently.

Is this sounding a little “out there?” Well, it’s a very practical perspective, as this example illustrates.

I spent most of last week at a very intense seminar. The content was wonderful, but the initial experience was very challenging, physically and emotionally. The days were long – advertised as 9:00 am – 9:00 pm. But there was no schedule. The sessions chronically started late, sometimes by as much as twenty minutes, and the lobbies were packed with people waiting to enter the conference room – something that would not bode well if you were even slightly claustrophobic or conducting a fire safety inspection. We never knew when we might have a restroom or lunch break and the room was freezing cold. I usually dress in layers anyway, but I knew that the discomfort wasn’t just mine when I saw half the crowd wearing their coats after the lunch break. The evenings ran long as well, often past 10:00 pm.

The physical and psychological conditions were so difficult that I came dangerously close to crossing over to “the dark side.” Rather than my usual sunny disposition, I found myself contemplating the idea that our host was purposefully creating this environment simply so that he could prove that we needed to purchase his other “high performance” programs. Thankfully, my husband was the only one close enough to notice that I had become “prickly.”

All this frustration and physical discomfort was filling me and I needed to do something with the energy. Finally, after two days, I found a stall in the ladies room on the other side of the hotel and just sobbed. I let it all go. I cried out of anger. I cried out of fear. I cried out of physical discomfort. I cried like a little girl asking for her mommy to fix it. And I miraculously felt better. Releasing all that negative energy “cleared my channel” so that more effective and positive energy could start flowing.

After our evening break, our host took the stage and described how there were certain members of our group who had acted unprofessionally to his staff. He described how someone had screamed profanely as his assistant and how another woman pounded on the door shouting to get in, complaining that the sessions were late once again. He made it very clear that this was not acceptable behavior and publicly invited these people to leave the conference.

From my perspective, these people were also clearing their channels, albeit they could have used a bit more skill in doing so. With the amount of emotional and psychological energy we were all experiencing, these people would have been better served to release the energy before they tried to have a conversation with the event staff. But I understand that they were just doing the best that they could with the skills that they had available to them in that moment. I am not condoning their behavior. I just understand it.  For it could have very easily have been me who exploded – I just chose to cry.

Now here’s an interesting twist. The physical, emotional and psychological conditions of the following two days were radically different. The thermostat had been adjusted to a comfortable temperature. We were given an idea of how much time would pass before a break. Our host seemed to care a bit more about our experience of the seminar. All the logistical and physical conditions, which had previously made the event so emotionally challenging, had been cleared up.

The point isn’t to suggest that we cleared the channel and then the conditions of the seminar somehow magically improved. The point is that we cleared the channel and moved toxic energy (and calories) out of our systems. In doing so, we improved our health – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually – and we made room for the transformation of our experience.