Choosing Crystals + Crystal Care Basics (A Convo With Colleen McCann)
Crystals are stunning and can draw you in based on their pure beauty alone...but we want to learn more. So many yogis benefit from the healing properties of crystals on and off the yoga mat...we're taking the month of March to learn all about these energetic wonders so we (and you!) can do the same.
As we kick off our month of focusing on everything crystal, we thought it was best to start with a bit of basics. How exactly do you choose a crystal (do they really "choose you"?!) and what the heck does it mean to cleanse or charge your precious stones?!
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You want ethically sourced stones, and those with the most positive, clean, clear energies possible. Knowing the lineage of a crystal is a lot like knowing where your meat or your eggs come from. Free-range and farm-to-table, right?
- Colleen McCann
We're breaking it DOWN for beginners. We wanted to get to the root of some basic beginner questions, so we had a convo with Colleen McCann - fashion stylist turned energy practitioner and author of Crystal RX - to get some answers.
Colleen holds the esteemed title of Shamanic Energy Medicine Practitioner with an accreditation as Healer Light Body, she has studied Nordic and Mexican Shamanism, she is a Reiki Master and has spent a decade studying with a Buddhist Feng Shui Master to learn Crystal Healing and Space Clearing (we could go on about her experience). With Colleen's time and immense education working as a healer and crystal expert, as well as her incredible book being such a resource, we knew that we were going to get some answers.
Have you checked out Colleen McCann's Crystal RX Book yet?
It's our newest favorite crystal reference.
KL : How do you love to choose a crystal?
Colleen : I always like to say, "You don't pick the crystal, the crystal picks you!" When I go into a crystal store I rely on all my senses to pick the right crystal for me. I may put my hand out like a metal detector & skim over a selection of crystals to feel the energy of right one or one sparkly gem may keep screaming from across the room "pick me, pick me". If I happen to be wearing my Pound Pendulum necklace than I use that to aid my selection. (They double as a fashionable necklace & mystical divination tool)
KL : We hear that we should gravitate towards one...what exactly does that feel like?
Colleen : Crystals all have different capabilities and powers. Certain stones are ideal for healing the body, some are best for tapping into your intuition, others are suited for working on emotional issues. The crystal you need will speak to you! When you first come into contact with your crystal, you may experience any of the following sensations: the stone may get hot in your hand, you may feel tingles into your arm, or you may feel a third-eye buzz. You may also "just know," or feel, that a crystal you encounter is a good fit. Trust your intuition
KL : Where do you purchase your crystals?
Colleen : In my travels, I meet crystal vendors from all over the world, and I source my stones from crystal experts I trust. I have dug crystals out of the dirt with my own two hands, purchased ones on Etsy as well as purchased them from my neighborhood crystal store. It's not practical for everyone to journey to a gem mine and hand-pick their own stones, but your local metaphysical shop is the next best thing.
KL : Should we worry about them being authentic/purchase from credible sources?
Colleen : My best advise is to build a working relationship with the store. Feel out the space. Take the time to meet and talk to the store owners, and ask them about where they source their stones and if they can fill you in on the history of a stone you are interested in. This is what I do. You want ethically sourced stones, and those with the most positive, clean, clear energies possible. Knowing the lineage of a crystal is a lot like knowing where your meat or your eggs come from. Free-range and farm-to-table, right?
Photo Cred : @style_rituals
KL : How and when should we be cleansing our crystals?
Colleen : There are many differing approaches to cleansing stones, but I am introducing you to the top methods I've learned from my mentors, stemming from various esoteric traditions. Borrow the practices here that resonate most strongly with you and that are the most practical for your lifestyle.
1. Applying Reiki energy
2. Placing any crystals on top of a slab of Selenite for 24-hours
3. Salt water bath
4. Sage Smoke...Smoke sensitive? Then try my favorite Sage Spray from Paper Crane Apothecary called CLEAN SLATE (PS. Each bottle is filled with tiny crystals that not only help detox your crystals but people & places.)
KL : Do you have a favorite method of cleansing your crystals?
Colleen : My personal fav method? Clearing my crystals under the Full Moon light is my personal favorite method of clearing crystals.
KL : Why is this your favorite?
Colleen : Because this is best day in a lunar cycle to clear a crystal as the Moons rays are the strongest.
Colleen details 14 ways to Cleanse in her book, Crystal RX < --- grab a copy !
KL : Any other need-to-know tips about crystal care?
Colleen : If a crystal breaks your journey together is OVA! It's time to release the crystal back to the earth. You could bury it on a hike or throw it into the ocean! But remember to say thank you for its service first before releasing it back into the wild
KL : How do you recommend "charging" your crystals? What is the importance of this?
Colleen : Cleansing your stones is the first step. Your next order of business is to "charge" or energize your crystals in order to reinforce your connection with them, whether you are working with newly acquired stones or stones you have had for a long time. A crystal is a bit like a battery: It vibrates at a certain frequency, and when you use it, it discharges positive energy into your body. This is why people report feeling tingles, zaps, jolts, or heat in their body when wearing or handling a crystal; the energy of our body is merging with that of the crystal. But it will eventually run out of juice and need to be recharged. Some of the top methods I rely on for charging my crystals are: Bathing them in sun or moonlight, sitting the crystal on top of a Hematite slab or bathing them inside a sound bowl.
Photo Cred : @style_rituals
KL : Are there any specific spots that you suggest keeping crystals?
Colleen : I think having a sacred space, like an altar, dedicated to your chosen spiritual or energetic practices is a great place to start. An altar is any structure upon which offerings are made for a specific occasion/ reason, and altars can be dedicated to many purposes, from honoring ancestors and universal unseen forces we believe are protecting and guiding us to manifesting situations and showing gratitude to something. For thousands of years, altars have been built in churches and temples, on sacred grounds and shrines, and in other places of worship. I view altars as a kind of common meeting point for all faiths and traditions. A personal crystal altar does not have to be elaborate or fancy. I like to look at altars as an extension of who we are, and think of them as an endlessly evolving, living, breathing organism. It should simply be a special place to call your own, a quiet place for reflection, focus, and prayer, for thinking positive thoughts, manifesting your desires, and honoring who and what is important to you. And you can turn just about any place in your home or garden into your own sacred space for a crystal altar! The most common places I see crystals used are: wearable items, spatially (home, office, studio, garden, altar, temple), artistically (furniture, sculpture) .
KL : Is there a process (to decide where to display in your surroundings)?
Colleen : Yes there is a process. On a basic level my best advice is to follow your intuition to placing crystals. You can work with someone like me that does energy work to locate the most auspicious places to place crystals in your according to your birth chart. I offer a special service called an ENERGETIC ALIGNMENT where I will spend the day with you to help balance the energy in the home as well as do a personal crystal reading, place crystals & other Shamanic services.
KL : "Crystals can strengthen skin's elasticity, fight free radicals, and combat wrinkles, plus give new life to your hair, pump up your chi and keep your 'down there' in shape." (Quoting Colleen) . Whoa. Ok....we KNOW your book dives in deep - but can you give us a little teaser of your favorite ways to incorporate crystals into your daily life?
Colleen : I never leave home without crystals in my bra!
KL : Any other tips for crystal-newbies?
Colleen : A crystal may change color as you work with it due to absorbing, storing & transmitting different energies on its journey.
If a crystal breaks your journey together is OVA! It's time to release the crystal back to the earth. You could bury it on a hike or throw it into the ocean! But remember to say thank you for its service first before releasing it back into the wild.
- Colleen McCann
Got it. The takeaway here is that there is a LOT to learn about the energy of crystals, it's a process. Just like your yoga practice, it could truly be looked at as a life-long journey. We learned some really great basics about choosing, cleansing and charging crystals from Colleen - but it's a super individual experience so you need to just begin. Very glad that there are experts like her around to help those interested get a deep connection.
Colleen McCann's book, Crystal RX is a must-add to your inspirational book shelf and serves as a beautiful read and reference point.
Grab your Crystal RX Book & learn about Colleen & her services here : www.stylerituals.com/
Be inspired by Style Rituals on Instagram here : @style_rituals
Fill your feed with Style Rituals on Facebook here : @style-rituals
Namaste, crystal lovers.
(PS we will be back SO SOON with more crystal goodness.)
Jenny is a mama, DJ, yoga teacher and beach-obsessed boss babe at TheKaiLife.com. You can find her with a huge smile on her face adventuring with her husband, son Kai and fur babies Koa & Snorkel; spinning music and dancing with you late night; on her yoga mat or under a palm tree.
Follow her on instagram @iseekthewaves @jadoreurlife .
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