Jealousy is a common feeling, one that all of us experience far more than we perhaps care to admit.

It starts as early as childhood and usually results in squabbling siblings, competitive natures or comparable tendencies.  We are programmed when we are young that this is one of the ‘negative’ emotions and traits that we shouldn’t exhibit, yet we are rarely given the supportive tools to unlearn this behaviour, and instead tend to suppress or bury our feelings.

With that in mind, it is no surprise that we carry these feelings through to adulthood and often feel jealous long after it’s socially acceptable to be, even sometimes holding on to childhood rivalries as a result.  People like to put an ‘age’ on jealousy.  After perhaps the excusable cute stages of being a toddler, we have to ‘man up’.  We have to own these strong and often confusing feelings (usually in secret) forcing us to move on at hurried speeds, especially when we are unexpectedly triggered by them in later life.  When you start to understand jealousy, where it comes from and the effects of childhood supression, it becomes no surprise that so many adults still hold enviable comparisons and still feel the need to compete.  But what makes it worse is that when we feel jealous in later life our inner child comes along for the ride!  Bringing up old insecurities and suppressed emotions just to make the process feel even harder to deal with and to sprinkle a little self-guilt over the proceedings!

So why is jealousy such an important emotion to acknowledge?


In later life, since I’ve really begun to awaken, I have become increasingly aware of my own shadow side.  Today I was reminded in such a fleeting feeling that jealousy is still a part of who I am, albeit a continually self-challenged and reducing emotion.  An emotion that pacifies with every high vibrational discipline I practice, with every Bach remedy I take and with every day that I learn to love myself that little bit more, but I would be lying if I said it wasn’t a feeling that rears its head in different forms every now and again.

As a practitioner, and someone who has done a lot of self-healing in a short space of time, I understand that jealousy is what is known as a low vibrational energy.  It is something that comes more from ego, unbalanced emotions and often a place of disconnect within the heart.  But I also believe that it can be a wonderful learning tool when you’re ready to listen, as I see it as a ‘trigger’ emotion.  A trigger emotion is one that acts as a catalyst for great change, but one that can often be uncomfortable and challenging for not only ourselves but those around us.  It’s an emotion that is rarely about the other person and EVERYTHING about us.

Jealousy doesn’t always come from a place of resentment, bitterness or anger, which is often why it is seen to be so bad.  It gets subconsciously grouped together with other so called ‘bad’ emotions and the whole process portrays those experiencing it to be some kind of green eyed ‘monster’.  Yet I find jealousy is more linked to a place of self-worth, self-love and self-esteem or rather, lack of.

When we feel jealous it’s often because we don’t feel worthy.  We don’t feel we can have the same success or achievements as others, or when we need validating because we’re not quite giving ourselves the love and respect we seek, and it’s often only experienced when our own feelings of self-acceptance are too much in the negative.  Don’t be fooled into thinking that those truly living in their power won’t still experience feelings of jealousy, as they will, but for them it’s more likely to be quieter, infrequent, and will only serve as a learning tool when it surfaces.  Like every emotion, jealousy will appear multiple times on a healing journey.  It will be weaved into the fabric of your very being, linked subconsciously to intricate layers of past trauma, belief systems and core values.  Some feelings of envy will be strong and noticeable, whilst others will be subtle and take a period of processing to be able to put a name to the emotion.  And that in itself is healing!

Our shadow sides can teach us so much.  Just sitting with a feeling of jealousy can tell us what remedies for example are needed for the next part of our healing journey.  Holly Bach remedy is often associated with feelings of jealousy, but it isn’t always the most appropriate.  For squabbling children, I would say it is usually the ‘go to’ remedy, but Holly is for when we feel extremes of a negative.  So in the case of needing to invite love into the heart or balance extremes of jealousy then it’s one to consider, but I often think people with Larch and Pine tendencies can also experience a lot of jealousy.  For they often compare themselves, never quite feel good enough at what they do and in turn can look at everyone through an emerald tint for it’s less about the person they’re jealous of and more about their own feelings of inadequacy.

When I have been on retreats, taken part in intense healing courses and integrated into close-knit circles I have been surprised by how much jealousy I have felt.

I have felt as though others are getting opportunities that I am not, I have felt that I will never be as good as someone else and I have felt that space holders have given praise to others that I wanted for myself.  And at the time I know I was jealous in some form.  But what has been a huge breakthrough on my journey to releasing this jealousy, was to admit it.  Admit it to myself and in turn to the people I was sharing space with.  This admission was healing in itself for it would NEVER have been something I would have said out loud, I wouldn’t even have been able to say it to myself as I wouldn’t have been so aware.  But in saying out loud how I felt, I gave power to those words, I released them from my body and in turn I found the humour in the emotion. For I had spoken my truth, without filter, and let go, trusting the process.  I had chosen to do something differently to what I usually would and with that decision came deep healing, still to this day.

In a closing circle at a soul-journey I went on last year, the honesty stick made its way around the circle until it got to me.  I was asked to sum up what I was feeling, and in that moment, I felt my body get hot and my adrenalin fuelled feelings rush to my chest as if I were to have a panic attack at any given moment, for I knew I needed to say out loud, to all these people who seemed so perfect and so enlightened, that I was feeling jealous.  Jealous that the space holder gave her praise to someone else and not to me.  But luckily enough the two space holders were encouraging, created a safe space and they understood the need to expose the shadow side as much as the light, so I reluctantly shared.  I can’t even remember what was said in response to my words, but I felt better, I felt lighter and I no longer felt jealous! I realised in that moment that the jealousy triggered an emotion linked into my childhood insecurities, and I looked to that space holder as if she were my mother, wanting her to tell me what a good job I have done and that I had her seal of approval.

But I also realised in that moment that had she have given it to me, it wouldn’t have been enough.  She could have praised me 10 times over but until she gave me that 11th dose of praise it wouldn’t have felt enough.  And that’s because one of my main Bach types is Pine.  So, jealousy for me usually indicates a need for me to take Pine, to improve my self-worth and to find validation of myself.  The much feared feeling of jealousy actually became the tool that set me free in this case.  It gave me closure.  It gave me understanding. And it gave me a gentle reminder that I hadn’t taken enough Pine!  It also sparked a hugely emotive and honest closing circle, that I can now see perhaps wouldn’t have happened had I not been so open.  Had I not found the courage to share my shadow then others may not have been so rebelliously led to share theirs.  But in doing so we ALL exposed our shadow sides.  We ALL understood what triggered us and what needed deeper healing.  And it ended in such a deep respect, love and understanding  for each other and served as a humorous reminder of what we all needed to individually heal.  It couldn’t have ended better.  From such pain came an undoubtedly uncomfortable lesson and situation, but one that ended so blissfully and couldn’t have taught us what we all needed to know without my initial green eyes.

So, challenge your shadow sides.  Notice who and what triggers you.  Notice who you feel in competition with or enviable of.  For they can be your biggest teachers and your greatest tool for healing.

Yours in love and light,


Sharing is caring!  Sharing my blogs, quoting my insights, and your continued support is always appreciated.  However, if you reference any of my work then please credit Honeysuckle Healing, and include links to the appropriate piece so that others may benefit from these tools too.  I work hard to ‘give back’ to my community through my free blogs and self-empowering online content.  I can only continue to meet this dedication through your respect and recognition.  Thank you

You may have noticed an influx of companies (perhaps many of whom you can’t even remember signing up for their services) emailing you in recent weeks, asking you to re-subscribe to their mailing list.

That’s because on May 25th 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect, which in simple terms has been built around giving us all more control over our data and the ways in which it is stored, used and shared.

This can seem an unnecessary task for some, and as a small business it has meant a complete review of my policies and practices.  However as someone (like everyone I’m sure) who seems to have had their email address or phone number added to things that they can’t ever remember signing up for, I can personally understand the need for change.  I also think it’s important that no matter how small the business, it’s customers and clients should feel confident that their personal information is respected, kept confidential and used appropriately.  Therefore, I have tried to find a compromise between not bombarding the Honeysuckle community with emails asking you to get in touch or re-subscribe, whilst ensuring I am increasingly open and transparent about what the GDPR means to Honeysuckle and in turn your data moving forward.

As Honeysuckle Healing is a small independent business, I am taking these new regulations seriously and have already mentioned some of the ways in which I would be ensuring my business is GDPR compliant in April’s newsletter.  As I come from a health and social care background, as well as many organisational roles, I have always been overly familiar with the Data Protection Act and the importance of working with clients openly to gain their consent for services.  With that in mind, I am pleased to say that I feel in order for Honeysuckle to be compliant with these new regulations, I need only make a few changes to my current consultation forms and to bring your attention to the ways in which you can subscribe and unsubscribe from my services.

This blog is aimed at reassuring any new and existing customers of Honeysuckle Healing, including those who haven’t used our services for some time and may wish to leave our mailing list, what you can and cannot expect from Honeysuckles services moving forward.

Below you will find some common Q&A’s that will help you to understand Honeysuckle’s compliance with the GDPR and hopefully help you to familiarise yourself with what you can expect moving forward.

  1. Will I need to complete a new consultation form?

For anyone who has attended a Honeysuckle event, taster session or had an initial or follow-up treatment with Honeysuckle Healing from 1st May 2018, you will have been asked to complete an updated version of my consultation form and therefore will not need to update your details again until a point of review*.  This form has been given the addition of marketing ‘opt outs’, which include choosing whether you wish to receive emails, texts, post or contact from Honeysuckle Healing in between treatments.  It also informs you of the ways in which I store and use your information.  For anyone who has completed this new form, I have updated your consent and will adhere to this accordingly.  However, please note that you can change your preferences at any time by contacting me via any of the usual methods of communication, or by simply clicking ‘unsubscribe’ on the monthly newsletter.

If you have had a treatment, taster, or attended a Honeysuckle event BEFORE 1st May 2018 then you will be asked to complete a new and updated consultation form at your next appointment and be asked to book a full consultation appointment rather than a follow-up appointment.

*review period TBC

  1. What Honeysuckle communication will I receive if my last treatment was before 1st May 2018?

With effect from 25th May 2018, anyone who has not completed a new form i.e. has had a treatment before 1st May 2018, please be aware that I will no longer be sending you cards, texts or postal communication as you will not have been given these service ‘opt-out’ choices at the time of your last treatment.  However, I have chosen to keep your email address on my mailing list to receive the monthly newsletter and very occasional emails in between.  This is because I am confident that everyone on my mailing list has given consent to be added (see question 5).  I would also like to remind you of the easy ‘opt out’ option at the bottom of the newsletter which simply says ‘unsubscribe’.  If you click this link at any time, I will assume and respect that you no longer wish to receive any form of communication from Honeysuckle Healing.

  1. What does it mean to ‘unsubscribe’ from the mailing list?

If at any point you wish to stop receiving emails (and post/texts for those who have opted in) from Honeysuckle Healing then you simply need to click ‘unsubscribe’ from the bottom of the newsletter.  By doing this I will assume that you no longer wish to receive any form of communication from Honeysuckle Healing and I will not contact you or send any communication via email or post as per your request.  By choosing to re-subscribe at a later date you are simply requesting to re-join the electronic mailing list to receive your copy of Honeysuckles monthly newsletter and occasional emails in between.  If you wish to receive postal services or texts at a later date then you will need to complete a new consultation form.

  1. Why will I no longer receive postal communication such as birthday cards?

If you have not had a treatment, attended a workshop or taster event prior to 1st May 2018 then you will not have had the opportunity to complete my revised consultation form, which updates you on data sharing and gives you the option to select the ways in which you are happy for Honeysuckle Healing to contact you.  Therefore, I will not be GDPR compliant if I continue to send postal communication or initiate texts after 25th May (sorry to all those older clients yet to have a birthday this year and receive their Honeysuckle gift voucher!)  To continue to receive all forms of Honeysuckle communication, you will need to have another treatment or attend a taster or workshop in order to complete a GDPR compliant consent form.

  1. Why do I still receive emails but not postal communication?

On my previous consultation forms there has always been a box that has asked you if you wish to be added to my mailing list.  Therefore, I have already gained your consent to email you.  However, until 1st May 2018 there was not a box to ask if it was ok to send you cards for special occasions or to keep in touch via text or postal services. Everyone on my mailing list has either given their consent by signing up via the website, through previous consultation forms, personal request or by adding their name to a mailing list at a previous event.

  1. What if I only use the Bach treatment bottle only service or have a skype/phone appointment?

All services that I provide require me to collect a minimum amount of personal data in accordance with my insurance obligations, such as name, date of birth, address and contact details, as well as keep a record of suggested Bach remedies and any aftercare advice that I give.  It is also best practice for me to gather necessary background medical information when giving Reiki or energy healing.  When someone has requested a phone/skype appointment for Bach flower remedies or a treatment bottle only service, I have previously gathered this information by phone or text in order to speed up the process and keep interaction minimal for the customer.   However, to ensure my records are kept up to date and you are aware of the ways in which I use, store and share your information, as well as given ‘opt out’ marketing choices, I am in the process of creating a condensed form to support these services.

Please note, with effect from 25th May, Bach flower treatment bottle only customers will be expected to complete a condensed consultation form prior to the issue of a Bach flower blend.  For distance energy healing clients, or Bach flower consultations via skype or phone, you will be required to complete and update full consultation forms at regular points of review.

  1. When I sign up via the website mailing list box, what communication will I receive?

When you choose to add your email address to the mailing list box on the home screen of you are choosing to receive a monthly copy of Honeysuckle News, which is a newsletter emailed to you around the 1st of each calendar month.  You are also being added to my mailing list, which will give me the consent to send adhoc emails, as deemed holistically appropriate and as Honeysuckle evolves its services.  This is likely to be a rare occurrence, however I may on occasions feel this is relevant and wish to share important news with the Honeysuckle mailing list.

  1. How do you store and protect my data?

It is a requirement of my insurance company, Balens, that I store personal information, including details of the treatments I have given and any aftercare advice for 7 years from the date of last treatment.  I have always kept consultation forms electronically, shredding any paper copies, using my personal device which is password protected and kept in a secure place within my home.

I have a secure website, which supports the safe use of any information you share such as enquiries and email addresses online with Honeysuckle.  And I use Mail Chimp to send the majority of my mailing list emails.  In the event that I need to contact you directly, in a group of other attendees to a workshop for example, I will use the option to ensure that your email address is concealed from others.

  1. Why do you gather information?

It is a requirement of my insurance company and professional memberships that I gather basic personal information (see question 6) as well as a brief medical history.  I have endeavoured to keep the information I request on my consultation forms to a minimum and to ask only what’s relevant from a treatment point of view.  Some medical conditions can have a reaction to healing treatments and therefore will require medical involvement or closer monitoring for example.  All information gathered is taken with a view of giving you the best possible service, results and ongoing support, as well as to ensure I am aware of any triggers or complications that may arise on your healing journey.

Personal information is kept in case of any emergency or need for me to contact you.  You are given details above about the ways in which I may use this information with your consent.

You will be fully involved at consultation whereby we will discuss this in more detail and you will always be kept informed and involved in your treatment selection.

  1. Do you pass on my details?

Your details are treated as confidential, as is your treatment notes and the conversations we share.  However, I reserve the right to break confidentiality if I feel concerned that your welfare or the welfare of others is at risk.  You will be given details about this at consultation and I will inform you if I need to break confidentiality for this reason.  Other than this I do not share your details with anyone else or any third parties.

  1. How often will you review this?

I am still determining the best course of action for a review period, and this may change during this time of transition and compliance.  However, I anticipate that I will start to do a yearly audit, meaning that I may ask clients to complete a new consultation form and to update their preferences one year from their last treatment.  This is more likely because contact details and medical information may have been likely to change.  However, workshops and taster sessions will require completion of a specially adapted form each time, due to the time lapse between each session.


I hope that this blog answers some of your questions about how GDPR will affect your services and communication with Honeysuckle Healing.  As always, I will strive to be open with you at consultation and to keep communication between treatments to a necessary minimum, only sharing holistic information I feel may support your healing journey as a whole.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your continued support and patience during this time of change, when I may need to update forms and procedures multiple times in order to arrive at the best outcome for you and Honeysuckle, whilst being mindful of the need for GDPR compliance.

If at any point you are unsure of any of the ways in which I store, share or use your data you are welcome to re-read this blog or to contact me for more information.  You also have the right to request any information I hold about you, by putting your request in writing.

Once again please be aware that you can unsubscribe to Honeysuckle services at any time via the newsletter or by contacting me through email, my website, social media accounts or by phone.

Honeysuckle Healing is here to support you and would never intentionally do anything to jeopardise that or abuse your trust.  The introduction of GDPR will simply ensure that you feel more in control and have access to all information held about you.  From my point of view there is not a lot that will change as I have always taken this subject very seriously and will simply use this opportunity to improve my services further.

Yours in love and light,




Sharing is caring!  Sharing my blogs, quoting my insights, and your continued support is always appreciated.  However, if you reference any of my work then please credit Honeysuckle Healing, and include links to the appropriate piece so that others may benefit from these tools too.  I work hard to ‘give back’ to my community through my free blogs and self-empowering online content.  I can only continue to meet this dedication through your respect and recognition.  Thank you

aAs I looked in the full-length mirror in front of me, the one behind and the bonus third mirror to my left, I could really see myself in all her glory.  And I didn’t like what I saw one bit!

I asked myself ‘how’ have I got so big again, when almost 2 years ago to the day I was in good shape and about to run the Bristol 10k!  Yet now I wouldn’t even be able to run to the corner shop for a tub of ice-cream!

But what made me sadder, and perhaps compelled me to write such an open and exposing blog is that I realised that I wouldn’t be the first woman to feel this way in a Marks and Spencer’s changing room and I wouldn’t be the last!  Today I decided to embrace the weight I have gained and to get my much larger norks measured and safely housed in a bra that wasn’t 3 sizes too small and a pair of pants that actually covered my rather round derrière!  In doing so I felt sure that I would feel empowered and almost accepting of my new fuller figure, yet it left me looking shamefully at the reflection of this person I barely recognised with tears running down my face.

I am returning to my blog writing after taking some time out, and this comeback subject and level of honesty may seem a tad strange, but I blog about my real-life experiences on my journey to healing, and sadly for me weight will always be my nemesis and the very thing that I struggle to control and accept.  We all have our vices, and mine is food.  As I looked at myself today I felt vulnerable, which is something I am not very good at admitting or feeling, and I couldn’t understand how I found myself here again, looking at someone who, well, I didn’t want to look at.  But what perhaps disappointed me more is that it always seems to take weight gain for me to appreciate how perfectly acceptable my figure was in the days before.  I am terrible for critiquing myself.  For comparing myself to women whose figures are unachievable for my frame and health limitations, and then using this to somehow validate my inner critic when she says that I am too fat, too wobbly or not pleasing to the eye.  Of course, with my weighty life flashing before my eyes in the changing room today, I realised how much time I had wasted not feeling ‘good enough’ over the years, when infact I would LOVE to be any of the sizes of my former selves again right now.

So how do I break this cycle?

One that I am sure so many women can relate to.


If I had the answer to that question, I would not only be a very rich lady but I would be one slender goddess!  For there is no ‘quick fix’ and it seems, rather puzzlingly, that the more healing I do right now, the more pounds seem to go on!  I was actually slim when I started my Reiki training and I have got bigger every year since.  And I have asked myself WHY so many times.  I have, like many people who come to me as a practitioner searching for answers, turned to various groups and professionals, including nutritionists and channels, for the solution, but with no lasting luck.  I have had deep healing sessions and even tried hypnotherapy, yet I find myself the least in control of my eating I feel I have ever been, and now looking to take Cherry Plum Bach remedy for the fear of this relationship with food spiralling completely out of control.  That’s because ALL forms of healing (despite what they may claim) simply remove layers, assist you to the next lesson in life, give you another tool and move you ever closer to unlocking your potential, but of course it’s a journey!  One which will always take effort, moving goalposts and some lessons that can only be learnt through pain.

It has made me feel super vulnerable to share this post and I know that once I publish it I am likely to re-read it multiple times and question whether I should take it down, but I have felt for a while now that there is a need for more practitioners to be vulnerable.  To practice what they preach, to take down the ‘show-reel’ a little and to keep healing real!  And that means being authentic themselves and on occasions a little raw and out of their comfort zones.  I don’t personally believe, despite what some therapists riding firmly on weight-loss bandwagons claim, that there is any one solution to the problem.  I think it comes back to the individual and their own unique emotions and journey, which is why I utilise the Bach remedies first and foremost as my layers peel.

We are moving into a time where people are beginning to challenge stigmas and to encourage others to speak out, so although this may not be the full extent of my story, I do hope that it helps someone feeling deflated after a changing room experience today that they are not alone.  That someone else in the world has an issue with body image and is battling with their weight and insecurities. I am a positive person, and I am actually in the best place I have ever been with my confidence and acceptance of the person I am.  But I am human.  I have insecurities as much as the next person and I am on a healing journey along with the rest of the world.  I am lucky enough to have many tools to support me, but I have learnt that no matter how happy you are or how far along your journey, we ALL have issues behind the scenes, things we dislike about ourselves and things that we struggle with.

What makes the return of my plus size figure perhaps harder to deal with is that this time round I am awake enough to realise that sometimes things need to get worse before they can get better. Which means that I know that no weight loss club, no chanting in a candlelit room in Glastonbury or shot of cider vinegar each morning is going to cut it!  For I have to travel not to the diet club in the local church hall, but within myself.   As hard as this is to do, for I have clearly avoided the bigger picture for too long now, I need to surrender to the process and trust that in order to break free from my yo-yo figure and relationship with food, I need to do the internal work and I need to break the cycle…and that will take as long as it takes.  Some say that it’s common to put on weight when you are going into a deeper level of healing, for you need ‘protection’, and to a certain extent I can understand that.  Over the last few years I have gone on a healing journey of epic proportions and with each layer I have peeled back, with each core belief I have challenged and with each failure I have endured, I have picked myself up and learnt from it.  This is a time when I need to bring my demons to the surface, whether that be in blog form, self-acceptance or just bigger pants for now, this is a time when I know that it’s no longer about quick fixes or a pair of size 10 jeans, because that’s not going to make me feel better in the long run.  I need to challenge my thoughts and feelings and I need to deal with my pain and trauma, so that I can break abusive habits once and for all.  Weight can be a way of holding yourself back.  Food can be a replacement for love and weight can be a way of stopping yourself from meeting a new love, perhaps through fear of being hurt again, which are certainly all true in my case.

I wish this was more of a blog about how to love yourself, as I don’t like to think of anyone stood in their underwear in a room full of mirrors and critiquing their unique shape, marks and scars and questioning just how ‘beautiful’ they are.  And I would never speak to anyone else in the manner I speak to myself, I wouldn’t even think it about them!  So why do I allow myself to speak so cruelly to myself, why do I have such an idealistic view of ‘beauty’ and weight when it comes to myself yet I see women of all shapes and sizes and truly think they are beautiful?  The answer to that is probably because I’m human!  We are all our harshest critics and we all carry pre-conceived ideals of what is and isn’t acceptable for ourselves.

But, I take comfort in the fact that this blog is probably the most vulnerable thing I have ever shared, and in doing so I feel it is the first step towards breaking that habit.  Right now, this is where I am at, and that doesn’t mean that this is where I will be tomorrow, or next month or next year!  Becoming aware of our shadow sides and learning to face them head on, whether that be in one mirror or three, is a fundamental part of healing.  Denying the very thing that is making us unhappy or is stopping us from truly stepping into our power can continue to make the problem worse, masking it for a little while longer, before the blood seeps through the bandage and we can no longer hide it.  Today, why not ask yourself what is holding you back?  What is the thing that makes you unhappy? And what are you avoiding?

For me, today I will trust the process.  I will surrender to the flow and start to ask my inner voice the overdue questions such as the ‘why’s and the ‘how’s’.  I will take my Bach remedies and peel back those layers, challenging the emotions, fears and outlooks that lead me to this vulnerable place I find myself in today.  And what’s more, I will choose to do all of this in slightly bigger pants and a fabulous new bra!

Yours in love and voluptuous light,


Sharing is caring!  Sharing my blogs, quoting my insights, and your continued support is always appreciated.  However, if you reference any of my work then please credit Honeysuckle Healing, and include links to the appropriate piece so that others may benefit from these tools too.  I work hard to ‘give back’ to my community through my free blogs and self-empowering online content.  I can only continue to meet this dedication through your respect and recognition.  Thank you

Foreword by Ami Smart of Honeysuckle Healing:

I first met Joanne at a regular ladies pamper night I attend in Bristol, whereby I was offering Bach flower taster sessions and she was offering seated acupressure massage.

I remember being intrigued at the time by the services Jo offered once I caught a glimpse of her beautiful business cards, as they seemed to bring a taste of the orient and tranquillity with their eastern design, which made me pick one up to find out more.  However, it wasn’t until recently, when I stumbled across said-business card in my home and followed a series of synchronicities and intuitive calls, that I was led to using Jo in my own personal path of healing.  I booked a tarot reading with Jo, something I rarely feel the need to do, since I have become lucky enough to be able to channel my own guidance and messages.  However, we all need that outside influence sometimes and that reassurance that we are indeed on the right path and that tougher times will ease.

I have to say, I loved it!  My reading was 100% accurate and moved me to tears, and I was lucky enough to be joined by my spirit guides, which I could feel stronger than ever in Jo’s presence, as could she.  I noticed lots of beautiful crystals around Jo’s home, over-lighting our session and indeed in Jo’s beautifully bold jewellery that she wore.  At the end of my session Jo offered me a choice of crystal pendants to take away with me and I instinctively selected tigers eye, a crystal I have worked with many times before, and one that was appropriate at the time; given I was finding myself being energy attacked from several angles and needing protection.

From that moment on, I knew I needed to work with Jo, that she was sent to teach me my next lessons in life, and perhaps I was indeed sent to teach her some of hers.  I have since been lucky enough to sit in circle with Jo and to experience her energy, which cemented my decision to invite her to this months Guest Corner, as I witnessed first hand that Jo, like me, is keen to give others the tools and knowledge to help themselves, which is the type of people I am increasingly keen to source for my readers.

I have really enjoyed this month’s interview with Jo and she provided me with so much useful content from our time together that it was difficult to edit it all, whilst still giving enough for you to enjoy and learn from.

My journey with crystals is really awakening and I often use them in my own personal and professional practice, so I have really appreciated the tips Jo has kindly shared in this edition of ‘Guest Corner’.

Heartfelt thanks to Jo for her time, expertise and abundant enthusiasm, and for giving my readers so many easily adopted ways to connect to crystalline energy.  I can’t wait to experience my own crystal vibrational sound therapy session with Jo later today.


Yours in love and light,


May Guest Corner

Q&A With Joanne Hopes


‘Crystal Healing’


What is crystal healing?

Crystal healing is an ancient and powerful treatment that has been used for thousands of years by Tibetans, Mayans and Egyptians. Crystals are powerful transmitters of energy, which when placed on the appropriate areas of the body can work deeply on the physical, emotional and spiritual levels, in a way unlike traditional medicine that treat symptoms alone. Crystals balance energy flow, release disease from the body and leave you feeling relaxed.

What are the benefits of crystal healing?

The main benefits are a deep healing. When I perform crystal healing I do an ‘aura sweep’ which concentrates on healing the 7 subtle bodies, that includes the mental body, physical body and working with the chakric systems and auric fields.

Like many healing systems, it can help with low mood, illness management and prevention, as well as aid deep relaxation and necessary energy flow around the body.

Is crystal healing just for humans?

Crystal healing can be used to benefit animals. It can also be used within the home or other spaces, to remove stagnant or negative energy or indeed to invite in new energy.

When using crystals within the home, the easiest way is to create  a ‘grid’ or multiple grids.  Simply put a crystal of equal size in each corner of a room, or around each point of your bed, whichever area you want to invite renewed energy or healing to; clear Quartz works particularly well for this, or Rose Quartz if you’re inviting love for example, and this focused area will receive the invited healing.

How did you discover crystal healing?

I was diagnosed with cancer in 2009, and whilst I was lucky enough to make a full recovery following treatment, it did make me sit up and think about where my life was going and what I was doing, and I realised I needed healing.

As a child I was always drawn to fossils, beautiful stones and crystals, I liked holding them and collecting them and I was always into spiritual practices growing up.  I had a visit from my Aunt who was in the spirit world, and I took all of these things to be a sign that I needed to re-evaluate my life and my path.

I trained in Reiki and then later qualified as a certified crystal therapist.  I really enjoyed healing myself, my friends and family and helping others on their journey.

Do you have a favourite crystal?

Yes, labradorite. It’s full of flashes of colour with iridescent blues, golds and greens so I think it’s gorgeous to look at. It’s a powerful protector as it takes away negative thoughts and energy. It can be used to balance insecurities and fears, calming overactive minds, dispelling illusions, as well as helps with intuition and wisdom, clarity and concentration.  It’s widely used by shamans and psychics for its awakening properties.

What are good ‘starter’ or generically useful crystals?

Clear Quartz – It is easy to source and not too expensive. It’s a great general healer as it’s like the paracetamol of the crystal world! You can use it to amplify other crystals, i.e if you put any other crystal in the middle of a clear quartz grid it will amplify that crystals energy and healing properties. You can work with clear quartz points to heal a specific problem, so if someone had a bad knee you can hold the crystal points towards the knee to invite healing to this area, and point it away from the knee to remove the pain/ailment/illness etc.  It’s just a generally good crystal to work with in all aspects of healing.

Amethyst – a general first aid crystal as it is great for headaches and removing negative energy.  It’s a powerful protector, particularly good for physic work and awareness.

Rose Quartz – a great protector for the human energy field, brings in love and calmness and has a positive effect on all the chakras.  It’s a much lighter energy so it can be used with children, people with learning difficulties, those with sensitive energies, empaths etc.  It’s a crystal that doesn’t affect the electro-magnetic field too much, so it’s not going to make you feel all ‘spacey’.

Outside of these 3 crystals, I would suggest people start with a basic set of chakra crystals, so select 7 crystals you are drawn to, based on the colours of the chakras (red for root chakra, orange for sacral, yellow for solar plexus, pink or green for the heart chakra, blue for throat chakra, purple for third eye and a clear quartz perhaps for the crown chakra).  This is a good set to start with for self-healing.

Do bigger crystals have bigger/better benefits?

No not at all! It’s all about the power of the crystal really and the quality of the crystal or gemstone. For example, you could be working with a smaller crystal of a better quality such as an emerald, which may be really tiny but more powerful over say a huge chunk of poor quality rose quartz.

How do you suggest you source good quality crystals?

The best way to source crystals in my opinion is from local stall-holders, smaller independent shops and reputable crystal ‘traders’ as opposed to shop chains or the internet. Find people who know their stuff, it’s their business, it’s their passion; places like Glastonbury, Wells and other places where healers naturally gather for example. I would personally pick the crystals up, feel them, see if you are drawn to their energy, speak to the owner, get an idea based on your intuition and the feeling you get when you hold each crystal.  It’s a really personal choice and decision.  Use your hand to hover over crystals, you might be drawn to colour or shape, and I would say go with what you are drawn to rather than what books say.  You can look in the book after, and you might be surprised that you have picked the very thing you need to work on.

What does a crystal healing session with you involve?

I work from my home in South Bristol, and I create an atmosphere that would encourage someone to relax; with music, incense and crystals surrounding the room for example. Lying on a couch, I would place crystals on the main chakra points and begin with a chakra balancing, using my other tools and intuition.  I will also perform an aura sweep, to remove trauma and negativity from every aspect of the physical and auric body.  Then depending on what someone wishes to work on, I will use specific crystals I am drawn to or are known to contain specific properties, and use grids on the body or around the couch to aid healing.  

Recently I have re-branded my crystal healing treatment as crystal vibrational sound therapy, as I use other tools during a session such as my singing bowls and tuning forks for example.  Treatments are tailored to the individual so will vary from person to person.

What are some of the ways that we can work with crystals in everyday life?

Program crystals – every crystal sends out a subtle electro-magnetic vibration and they can be ‘programmed’ to aid a particular person or situation to enhance their properties. If you wish to programme a crystal without the advice or assistance of a crystal therapist, I would suggest using something like a clear quartz or rose quartz as these will generically be good to programme. You can programme crystals for yourself and others, for the highest good of course, you can request crystals bring clearer communication, improved health, improved family life or indeed invite love into your life.  Take it in either hand, whichever feels more appropriate, say out loud and repeat several times what you want it to do i.e. hold a rose quartz and say “I want this crystal to bring more love into my life/more peace into my family/to help me with self love” etc.  You can ask the crystal to help you with addictions, health problems and just about anything!

I would also suggest you take a photo of the crystal before you programme it as often they can change colour once they are programmed and used regularly.  It’s not uncommon for a clear quartz to become cloudy or to show rainbow light once programmed, as it becomes a ‘record keeper’ due to the intention that has been stored and recorded.  I would personally only use this crystal for this purpose moving forward, I wouldn’t use it for general healing once it’s been programmed specifically.

Wear and carry them wearing jewellery is a simple way to connect with crystal energy and their properties.  Wearing bracelets, necklaces, rings and even carrying crystals in your pocket are an easy way to aid healing, work with crystals and indeed benefit from them.

What are some easy ways to cleanse crystals?

There are lots of ways to cleanse them, but the easiest way is to run them under water, put them out in the sun, move them through sage or incense smoke, and use sound. When using the water method, you need to ensure they are not water soluble, as running crystals under water can damage them and soften them in some cases, as can some crystals when they are left out under the moon.    Water soluble crystals tend to end in ‘ite’, such as flourite, calcite, angelite, sodalite.  Lapis Lazuli is also water-soluble.  I personally use sound to cleanse mine, as I can cleanse a few at one time by putting them in my Tibetan singing bowl and asking for any negative energy to be removed and inviting in new charge. If you have nothing around you such as water, sun, sound etc you can just ask your guides and helpers to cleanse them.


Joanne Hopes offers one to one treatments in her home in South Bristol, which includes intuitive tarot and oracle card readings, crystal vibrational sound therapy, Reiki and seated acupressure massage.  Joanne also holds space regularly at psychic, holistic and spiritual events around Bristol.  You can find more details on her website or by email.  For those who do not live in Bristol, you can follow Joanne on her social media accounts for insights and occasional live card readings – follow on facebook or follow on twitter


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In this edition of Honeysuckle’s Bach flower series we bring our attention to the remedy of Vervain.

This wasn’t the remedy I intended to concentrate on this month, however after witnessing an overwhelming and recent collective need for Vervain, as well as experiencing new layers of the remedy presenting on my own journey, it seemed too hard to ignore!

Verbena officinalis is better known as Vervain, and it tends to grow on dry or stony ground with a chalk presence, where it’s not surrounded by much competition.  It will also nestle amongst hedges and roadside verges, although this is not such a common sighting in the UK today since the introduction of chemical sprays.  Vervain tends to gravitate towards areas that have been recently cleared or left sparse.  It is a tall and slender perennial, which bears pale lilac flowers that surround leafless stems and nobbled spear-like heads.   There are many species of Vervain/Verbena, and the plant itself has been widely used and respected for centuries due to it’s medicinal benefits, including it’s use in tea and Homeopathic tinctures and as a common offering to altars.

However, as always with the Bach remedies, we look at the energy harnessed from the plant to support the emotions of a Vervain type or mood, rather than consuming the plant itself.

Vervain’s can be intense individuals for they will have a strong sense of self and purpose.

Some people might even find them a little intimidating, if they perhaps don’t share the Vervain’s passions.  However, by and large, Vervain’s will be infectiously persuasive and to witness them in action can be very impressive!  They will be sure of what they believe in and what they are willing to fight for, and as a result they will not tolerate injustice of any kind, whether that’s against themselves or others.  They will often be the first to fight the case for others who don’t perhaps feel strong enough to fight for themselves or are more willing to ‘let things go’, they will not be afraid to take on organisations, stand up for the underdog and indeed will remain very loyal.  Animal rights campaigners or eco-activists for example can be strong Vervain types or indeed exhibit Vervain tenancies.

The Vervain remedy links to a feeling of being ‘overworked’, both mentally and physically and although it can be common for people to identify Olive as the remedy for exhaustion, Vervain’s can often reach burnout due to their inability to relax or switch off.  Vervain’s tend to keep going and to keep moving; from one campaign to the next or from one project to the next and they will often adopt other peoples battles along the way.  For this reason, Vervain can be a great remedy for stress or tension, difficulty to sleep, fidgety or restless natures, overactive minds, and for those who like to be doing things all the time.  Vervain’s tend to be perfectionists and can be very methodical, organised, and have a natural mental energy to get things done or to see things through.  They tend to like to work in a group, but naturally adopt the role as team leader due to their noticeable ability to lead and direct, for they are great organisers, motivators and like to get everyone on board and into their way of thinking.   Steering the ship as it were to their chosen destination, with as many people on board as possible.

Vervain’s will often be tolerant in nature, they will tend to stick at a cause or a task long after others may have given up, but often to the point where they will push themselves too far both physically and mentally, and are very susceptible to burnout.  In illness, Vervain’s tend not to listen to their bodies and will push themselves, often too far. I think of a Vervain a bit like the stereotypical Duracell bunny that is relentless in it’s goal, but in it’s haste the batteries eventually deplete and they need to recharge. Or a fancy sports car, which has the ability to reach great speeds and cover more ground than your average Morris Minor, but isn’t so efficient on preserving energy or leaving enough fuel in the tank. Vervain’s can also be like a lifeboat, speeding through the waters, collecting those stranded at sea along the way, eventually realising they have taken on too much water and overloaded their very vessel.

Vervain’s tend to start off very passionately, often with rigid ideas of what they want to achieve and what needs to be done, but they can lose interest as they tend to take on too much at one time.  Although this often isn’t a trait described for a Vervain, it can be one that presents further into the deeper layers of healing, due to their enthusiasm meaning that they take on too many projects and can’t always perhaps give their all to each one.    In the negative aspect of the remedy, a Vervain’s drive, their zest for life and their desire to learn can mean that they will start things and not always finish them.  Perhaps trying many new courses, attending copious events and lectures, without perhaps taking the necessary quiet integration or processing period that’s needed in any successful path of healing or self-development.

Vervain’s find it hard to take advice and to be told what to do, for they have strong views and opinions, which mean they struggle to see the flaws in their plans or to take on others viewpoints.

They aren’t coming from quite the same angle as say a Vine, who would be more domineering and perhaps even controlling in their ways, but Vervain’s will just want to get everyone on board, and can be quite persuasive and even infectious due to their passionate stance.

Vervain’s fight for injustice.  They tend to be those who are compelled to drive change on epic levels!  They will be the platforms and protesters for equality, for human and animal rights, for justice of any kind and will be the strong voice for those who cannot speak for themselves.   They are courageous and restless in many ways, wishing to build communities who share their strong ethics and sense of fairness, and to do what’s ‘right’.  They have many admirable and loyal qualities, but where they fall short is that sometimes they can come across as a little ‘too much’.  Vervain’s are the sorts who will come back from their Bach flower training and need to tell everyone about how amazing the system is (naming no names haha!)  In their plight to win everyone over to their strong way of thinking, they can tend to do the opposite, and can come off as a preacher and teetering on the edge of domineering.

The danger for Vervain’s is that they are at risk of becoming fanatical.  Their strong need to ‘rally everyone up’ and around to their ways of thinking can be obsessive and can be too much for some people to handle.  Vervain’s can be the very cause of their own stresses and strains for they put a lot of pressure on themselves to be the change they want to see in the world so to speak.  They almost see this as their plight, and they will often struggle to switch off or relax, for they naturally ‘buzz’ and thrive on life, with a real zest for living and need to fulfil their destiny’s.

As always, there is a scale with Vervain and many reasons for why you may take it.

Vervain’s do have many wonderful qualities, and like all the remedies, we need Vervain’s in this world.  We need people who want to leave a better world for the next generation, who are willing to stand up for what they believe in and may often foresee things that others can’t, and for this reason

I often associate Vervain with the Indigo children.

This is of course just a general outline of some of the more unbalanced natures of a Vervain, which may be having a knock on effect on their physical or mental health conditions.  Taking the remedy can help us to find a balance, to remain passionate and authentic in our causes, to still be supportive of others, but to also respect the need for individuality, varied viewpoints and to be able to interact on a more equal playing field.  It can allow us to stop and smell the roses (or Vervain in this case) a little, trusting the process and relaxing, without the need to be quite so wired or fidgety.  The remedy carries an air of calmness and an ability to soften our views in order to consider and support others, whilst still respecting ourselves and the need to take downtime.

The world needs you Vervain’s, so take this remedy to check in with those ego’s and to find the balance in all that you do.

Yours in love and flowery light,






PLEASE NOTE: I would always recommend having a consultation with a qualified and registered Bach Foundation practitioner/BFRP, to ensure that you get the most from the Bach system.  Dr Bach advised that blends be bespoke and BFRP’s teach their clients how to use the system effectively.  These monthly insights are offered as a guide to the remedies, but are by no means exhaustive.  Guidance is always advised when using the remedies for the first time or without suitable qualification.


Sharing is caring!  Sharing my blogs, quoting my insights, and your continued support is always appreciated.  However, if you reference any of my work then please credit Honeysuckle Healing, and include links to the appropriate piece so that others may benefit from these tools too.  I work hard to ‘give back’ to my community through my free blogs and self-empowering online content.  I can only continue to meet this dedication through your respect and recognition.  Thank you


Green Lamborghini photo is supplied courtesy of the amazing Motorsport and landscape photographer, Pete Atkins.  To see more of Pete’s portfolio or to request his services, please visit his website or follow him on Twitter