Jean’s Story

Lotus blossom illustration

Jean’s Story

Photo of Jean Haner

I was born “wide open.” As a child, I could physically feel the invisible energy of people, places, and even objects.

Sometimes this was fun.

For instance, if my mother lost her keys, I would walk around the house, feeling the air with my hand until I felt a little “zotz” in my palm.

Then, invariably, I’d look down to discover the missing keys in that very spot, under the stack of mail or in between the couch cushions.

But there was a significant downside to this kind of sensitivity.

I could walk into an empty room and feel the emotions held there from an argument that had happened weeks ago.

I’d start to feel sick, overwhelmed from absorbing the intensity of that information.

I certainly couldn’t explain to my parents what was really going on. I knew no words to describe the experience of being an empath.

Most people now refer to this as being a “highly sensitive person,” and psychologists believe that this includes at least 20 percent of the population.

At the time, I just thought that there was something terribly wrong with me.

It wasn’t until I was in my 20s that I started getting clues that this might not be some personal failing on my part after all – that it might actually have to do with something real.

Maybe I’m Not Crazy After All? Yin and Tang symbol drawing

When I married into a Chinese family, my very traditional mother-in-law insisted on being part of the hunt for our first house.

But she had some rather strange rules about which houses were acceptable, all part of what she called feng shui.

This was 15 years before this ancient Chinese science of how our environment affects us became known in the West, so I had no idea what she was talking about, but I did pay attention.

What she was saying was a revelation to me.

Could it be that there really was an invisible energy in houses that could affect us? Maybe I wasn’t crazy after all!

I began to experiment as we looked at houses for sale.

I’d walk through the rooms and hold my hand a few inches away from the walls, trying to read the information in each environment.

I found that I could identify where stagnant energy was held in a space.

Slight stuckness felt like I was brushing cobwebs; thicker stagnation felt like I was running my hand through mud.

When I reached a place where someone had felt some strong emotions, it was like walking into an invisible curtain. I could even sense where the electrical wiring was running inside the walls.

My mother-in-law became my first feng shui teacher, but I went on to ravenously study with every teacher I could find. After several years, I was practicing feng shui professionally.

Visibles and Invisibles…!

But I soon found that I was less interested in the “visibles,” such as where to put the couch or what color the wallpaper should be, and much more interested in the “invisibles” – the stagnant or stressed energy I felt in a space that was affecting the people there.

After all, even if the placement for the couch is visually “correct” according to feng shui principles, if it’s in a spot that holds disturbed energy from a bad argument, then no one is going to feel good sitting there!

As I walked through a house during one consultation, I felt intense resentment radiating from a beautiful clock on the wall.

My client noticed me pause there and said, “Oh, yeah, that clock hung in my office for the twenty years I was a bookkeeper. God, I hated that job!”

So there on her wall sat that clock, each day broadcasting messages of what it had absorbed during all her unhappy years of work.

It wasn’t just a visual reminder; after all, I could feel it, and I’d had no knowledge of the clock’s history.

Every time she passed by, it would trigger negativity, below the level of her consciousness, but still impacting her mood on a daily basis.

How old is your mattress?

I had a similar experience in the new home of a just-divorced man.

His bedroom was lovely, but when I stood next to the bed, I sensed frustration.

I heard angry voices and my jaw began to ache. “How old is your mattress?” I asked.

“Oh wow,” he replied. “It’s got to be at least twelve years old; my ex and I bought it when we got married.”

“Did you two argue before you went to sleep at night?”

“Hell, yes,” he said. “I think that’s what made me start grinding my teeth when I slept. And I still do.”

Ah, so that’s why my jaw hurt: I was sensing what his own system had done over the years that got imprinted in the bedding.

I explained that his mattress was keeping him immersed in the accumulated frustration and anger that he and his ex-wife felt during all those years of arguments in bed as their marriage came to a painful end.

He suddenly realized that he and his new girlfriend had started arguing as they lay in bed trying to get to sleep; the old energy was affecting his new relationship!

“I’m buying a new mattress today,” he said, looking at his watch.

It could get pretty expensive for my clients, I worried, if I kept finding furnishings that had to be replaced because they held negative energy!

Of course, there were positive sensations too.

Illustration of heart with gauze over it

I felt pure sweetness radiating out of an antique dresser that had been inherited from a loving grandmother, and I sensed the layers of contentment that had soaked into a rocking chair from generations of mothers watching their babies asleep in their arms.

These things broadcast out healthy, loving messages into the environment and supported the happiness of everyone there.

The more I worked, the more I refined my skills at sensing energy and interpreting what I was feeling.

I was opening to energy more and more, and it was fascinating.

But I really had no idea what I was doing, and I was starting to wade into deep water without having learned how to swim.


After each feng shui consultation, I was entirely depleted because I was taking on the energy I encountered.

My clients felt much better, but I felt much worse!

I had no business continuing this practice without knowing how to better manage the energy.

This was driven home to me the night I went into labor for someone else.

At the time, I had two feng shui clients: one was a midwife and the other was her patient, who had just discovered she was pregnant.

They asked me if they could call me to let me know when the one went into labor so I might energetically support the birth process and help things go as easily as possible.

“Sure, I’d be honored!” I said. I didn’t really know what that might entail since this had nothing to do with feng shui, but I imagined that I’d send them both love and light once I got the call.

Well, months went by, and we didn’t really keep in touch. In fact, I only rarely thought of our conversation.

Then, at 7:30 one night, I suddenly doubled over in extreme pain. It felt as though my uterus was exploding, and I was gasping for breath.

I tried everything I could think of to alleviate the pain, but nothing was working.

What was going on? Obviously something was seriously wrong with me, so at 10:30, I put on my coat to go to the emergency room.

Just as suddenly, my pain vanished. Puzzled and shaky, I fell into bed, just grateful that I seemed to be all right again.

The next morning, my phone rang. It was the midwife!

She told me that her patient had gone into labor the previous afternoon, but things had taken a sudden and drastic bad turn. (This was in the days before cell phones, so they had no chance to call me.) She said, “We were both in the hospital room, just calling out your name.”

Sometime around 7 p.m., the woman started experiencing extreme pain, but she was set on a natural, drug-free birth and refused any help to ease things.

After about three hours, she finally allowed them to administer an epidural, which took effect at – you guessed it – 10:30. Her pain disappeared, and she gave birth to a healthy baby boy soon after.

What had happened?

Well, we had made the agreement months before.

My system knew I was to be available, and so, below the level of my awareness, I picked up the signal as they both cried out for my help.

Unconsciously, I then did the only thing I knew how to do: soak up energy.

I tried to relieve her pain by taking it on myself—not the right way to handle things!

We are not meant to help someone by moving suffering from their body to our own.

It was already difficult enough for me to move through the world in everyday life, being affected by the energy of everything around me and not knowing how to have good boundaries.

And now I was trying to let go of all boundaries to open up more? Crazy!

Chastened, I embarked on a journey to try to change what was such an overwhelming challenge for me into something that was at least manageable.

But what actually occurred would revolutionize my entire life.


Image of the cosmos

I studied everything I could find about energy work and specifically space clearing as practiced for centuries in cultures all over the world.

I learned about crude techniques like making loud noises to break up stuck energy, smudging with sage, burying “power” objects in the ground.

A Chinese qi gong master even taught me the secrets of how to move negative energies into a doorframe to keep them contained, where they wouldn’t cause so much trouble!

My studies then took me to intensive training with powerful teachers that extended over years of time.

I learned methods that involved very precise and elaborate procedures to clear the energy of an environment and bring back balance.

The teachings were firm: if you performed all the steps exactly – in the correct way, in the proper order, and at the right time – then the clearing would be successful.

And it worked.      

Because I could feel energy, I could tell when the clearing happened.

I would feel a sudden whoosh, and there would be an amazing shift to a beautiful, pristine, almost crystalline clarity filling the house.

Sometimes at that point, the sun would even come out and flood the space with light. Or I might hear my client say, “I don’t know what you’re doing, but just now I started feeling so much better!”

But something was going wrong!

I quickly began to notice the whoosh of the clearing happening earlier and earlier in the session, long before I’d completed all the steps.

I’d be halfway through the process, and I’d feel the change happen.

Then it got worse. I started feeling the clearing happen as I pushed the doorbell when I first arrived at the house!

Later, I’d just pull up in my car, park in front of the house – whoosh.

It got to the point that I felt the energy shift while still on the phone with a client who’d called to make an appointment for a space clearing.

In fact, I was afraid that they might call back the next day to say, “You know, I don’t think I really need this after all. Things here are suddenly better.” I’d want to say, “Wait – let me send you a bill!”

What was going on?

I realized that the clearing wasn’t actually dependent on the complex ceremony I performed or the special objects I placed to change the energy.

What had happened was that in the process of learning to clear, I’d changed.

My system had been trained to respond to energy in a new way.

Now, when I encountered stress held in a space, it would transform just through my conscious connection, as a result of the level of heart-based awareness I’d learned to hold.

The truth is, it’s actually not about what you do; it’s really about who you are.

The power is not in the “doing”; it’s in the “being” – and I had learned how to “be” in a whole new way.

So it wasn’t just my clients who were benefiting; the more clearings I did, the more peaceful I became in my own life.

The clearings were like an even more advanced training for me in how to relate to all the energy I encountered, even within my daily experience. [nz_gap height=”6″ /]Photo of women setting cage birds free

I no longer needed hours alone to recover from spending time in crowded places.

I found that I was now recognizing the moment I started to take on other people’s stress and automatically clearing it before it could take hold in my system.

The things I used to hold a personal charge around, big or little, started to melt away.

That old experience in the past that had continued to cause me pain for years?

Now, it was like: Huh. What was all the fuss about?

The memory of the event was still there, of course, but my difficult feelings about it had disappeared.

Through the process of learning how to ease stress for other people, I’d learned to do it for myself as well.

As I went on to develop this work, what evolved was more than a way to teach how to bring the energy of both people and places into balance.

It became an elegant training for how to walk through your own life, centered and at peace, with your heart able to dance with whatever or whomever you encounter.

lotus line divider

Several years ago, I was in the waiting room of a radio studio, about to go on the air to be interviewed about my work with energy clearing.

The author who was scheduled to go on after me arrived all frazzled, having had a really tough day.

When she found out what I was going to be talking about, she said, “Oh god, would you mind – could you possibly do a clearing for me right now?”

For a split second, I thought, Sheesh, I’m trying to get focused for my interview!

But then I realized how silly that was: doing a clearing benefits my own energy as well, so it could only make my interview go better! [nz_gap height=”6″ /]

I sat with her and cleared for a few minutes, and then we quickly exchanged hugs and business cards as I headed into the studio.

A few hours later, I got an e-mail from her:

“WOW! In those 10 minutes of clearing, I lost an emotional 20 pounds!


Well, if this is how you’re starting to feel, you’ve come to the right place.

lotus blossom

[nz_gap height=”22″ /]Here are 4 steps you can take right now:

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