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How do I Become a Holistic Healer?

By Simone Lawson
Updated Mar 02, 2024
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Holistic healers attempt to heal those who are sick by treating the mind, body and spirit. These alternative medicine practitioners generally offer natural options to treat disease. To become a holistic healer, one may attend training in alternative medicine, take courses in herbal medicine and study activities that combine physical and spiritual aspects, such as yoga or reiki. Some holistic healers may even begin their careers with a traditional medical degree.

Some holistic healers may begin their careers as medical doctor’s or nurses, becoming more interested in holistic methods of healing and alternative medicine later in their careers. Holistic healers who hold a medical license in addition to holistic certifications often attract a wider base of clientele. Healers and naturopathic physicians are often sought out by patients who are receiving unsuccessful treatments from traditional medicine doctors or who are having adverse reactions to medications.

There are many schools throughout the world that offer certifications and degrees in body work and healing arts. To become a holistic healer, it is generally best to be trained in as many areas of alternative therapy as possible. Some degree programs offer a wide range of studies while other programs concentrate in one area, such as massage or acupuncture.

Courses that are typically included in holistic training include reiki, or energy healing; yoga; aromatherapy; and massage. Other training may focus on herbal medicine, healing stones and stress management techniques. During training, students are taught how to evaluate a patient’s medical history, symptoms, lifestyle and potential environmental contributors to illness.

To become a holistic healer, one needs to learn the spiritual and psychological aspects of recovery. Holistic healers will often provide patients with nutritional advice, some form of healing bodywork and spiritual and psychological counseling. A background in psychology or counseling is often helpful to those seeking to become a holistic healer.

Those who become holistic healers may open a private practice or work in an alternative treatment center. Those who are already medical doctors with a patient base may begin to incorporate holistic healing into their existing practice. Other holistic healers may choose to teach certification programs or develop their own methods for naturopathic healing.

Holistic healers who specialize in one particular area of healing may start a practice that offers only these specialized services. For example, if one is extensively trained in acupuncture and Chinese medicine, they may open an acupuncture clinic and prescribe herbal remedies for patients. Others who trained extensively in bodywork and massage may start a therapeutic massage business.

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Discussion Comments

By Sporkasia — On Sep 07, 2014

Holistic healing is a good field to get into because so many people are searching for more options in health care. I have a friend who has recently become a midwife. This profession is on the rise again, after almost disappearing for so many years. And aromatherapy and massage are used as viable health care treatment by a large number of people.

By Animandel — On Sep 06, 2014

The reason nurses become nurses is because they want to help people. Sometimes when you are in the medical profession for a while you see where the flaws are in the system and you begin to wonder how medical care can be made better. That's what happened with one of the ladies I work with.

After being a nurse for almost 20 years, she felt that one of the main problems with conventional medicine was that doctors were so busy treating diseases and injuries that they forgot to or didn't think they needed to treat the patients. Some of them just don't understand that there is a different, but most nurses know the difference because they spend more time with the patients and their families than the doctors do.

My former coworker would definitely agree with the definition that holistic healers are healers who care for the body, the mind and the soul. That's why she went back to school to study holistic healing.

By Laotionne — On Sep 06, 2014

I agree with what the article says about more people having faith in a holistic healer who has a medical degree. And this is even better when the healer has actually practiced traditional medicine for a while. At least you know the person isn't just practicing holistic medicine because he couldn't get into med school.

I know a person who has become a holistic without a medical degree will probably say this makes no sense, but that's just the way I feel about it.

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