Looking into transformative ways of reconnecting with nature and yourself? Perhaps shamanic practice is the way to go. Today’s guest is Beáta Alföldi, an international retreat leader, author, shamanic practitioner, and keynote speaker, among many things, with a gift for assisting individuals through deep transformation. She speaks on the importance of reconnecting with ourselves and finding the answers that are already within. Learn how to open yourself up to the wisdom of nature. Join as Beáta shares her plans and ways you can connect with her to help transform your life.
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How Shamanic Practice Is Used To Transform Your Life With Beáta Alföldi
We have another interesting guest. Her name is Beáta Alföldi. She is an international retreat leader, medicine woman, workshop facilitator, author, shamanic practitioner, sound healer, ceremonial leader, seer, and keynote speaker with a gift for assisting individuals through deep transformation. She also created the Integral Women Program for the Awareness Institute in Sydney. Welcome, Beáta. I’m happy to have you here.
Thank you so much, Catherine. It’s awesome to be here.
You do so much greatness across your entire career. You have an incredible life. I see you. I could feel your energy. It’s so peaceful. Tell me, what got you started on all of this?
That’s a very long story. I began as a professional dancer and singer. I was in London’s West End. I traveled all over the world, singing and dancing. At the height of my career, I ended up feeling a little bit despondent. My spiritual path kept on deepening. Around the age of 31, 32, I decided to take a little bit of a break and realize that yoga at that point was a good path for me because it combined a lot of physical practices as well as spiritual and esoteric truths. I ended up opening up my own school and practice in Australia, where I was teaching at least 35 yoga classes a week.
Around 2007, I met a woman in one of my classes and she said, “You would love Shamanism.” There is a new opening for this beautiful school that was opening in Australia called The Earth Institute. It has now changed to another name. At the time, I met two teachers there. I went through an accredited shamanic practitioner training with energetic healing, as well as ecopsychology.
At that time, after I finished my training I ended up going into the jungle in Peru as well as the Andes, and started working very closely with some indigenous elders there, as well as plant medicines. I’ve traveled to Mexico and all over the world. That was probably my biggest initiation. I’ve been on this path facilitating transformational retreats for the last several years.
I’ve also had an incredibly rich life with some very deep challenges that I’ve overcome. I always say to people, “We cannot facilitate that which we have not transformed ourselves.” Through the challenges, all the practices, and the knowledge that I’ve received, not only from my teachers as well as from life but also from the plant medicines, I now curate programs for men and women that are focused on empowering an individual and transforming all of those stories that keep all of us stuck in very small ways of being in life.
That sounds like something many people need now.
What this COVID situation we’ve got going on in the world is teaching us is how disconnected people are from themselves, how many people live in fear, and how many people don’t trust their own bodies. I call this time a time of revealing and great awakening. Revealing ourselves to ourselves, and also awakening a lot of people up to their higher purpose and their greater potential. More than ever now, our spiritual and embodied practices are becoming primarily very important for our audience.
We are being tested. That’s for sure. A lot of people are forgetting about those learnings, which is sad because not everybody’s going to keep everything that was taught to us throughout 2020. The ones that do will definitely benefit from this awakening. For people that don’t know your practice, can you please explain what a Shamanic practice is? When someone comes to you, what is it that they are going to get and discover through doing this with you?
We cannot facilitate that which we have not transformed ourselves.
I’ve finished facilitating a beautiful retreat here in Cancun. I would say the biggest takeaway that I received as feedback was a few things. Many people said that they’d returned to themselves. They’d found themselves again after a long time. They rediscovered a deep love for themselves and reconnected with the feeling of being alive and passionate about what is opening up in their lives, and realizing that we are all co-creating every step of the way.
Stepping out of all the victim stories or the “I didn’t create these” stories, and stepping into that space of if I’m a powerful co-creator and I look around my life, what am I creating? How can I take responsibility and an embodied action every day so that I can make sure that I continue to be aligned with my values and my highest truth?
What do you do as a practitioner? What is it that they should expect from you? We need to explain this practice to people that have no idea. They may be heard about it but have not explored it. What do you offer to them to create what you described?
I offer people various tools and practices, and a lot of shamanic work. I do sound journeys. I’m a healer as well. I work with the drum, totem animals, womb wisdom works, psychological processes and practices, a lot of embodied work, and the plant medicine of Huachuma, which is San Pedro. Not in all of my retreats but in some of my retreats, I find that plant medicine and working with these very high states of consciousness in the process of ceremonies or in the context of a ceremony allows people to get away from our addiction to the mind and moving to the wisdom of our hearts and into our bodies.
I always say to people, “I’m not teaching anything. I’m supporting people to remember who they are.” I think that’s important in an age where everyone gives their power away to gurus and this person and this person. We have all the answers within. We sometimes just need someone to open that door and go, “I see you, here’s the door. Are you willing to step through?” Support that person in that process.
Do you believe that retreats will become something that we haven’t seen before after COVID and with everything? With all this awakening, I feel like people will feel a little lost because of all these discoveries. How do you see the retreat business going in the next couple of years?
I think 2022 is still going to be for those brave souls that are willing to put themselves out there. A lot of people are ready. I agree with you, Catherine. I feel that perhaps by the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023, we’re going to see a large increase in people that want to do conscious travel. What I mean by that is going to these magnificent destinations that perhaps they’ve always wanted to see. Rather than going to go shopping because we all love shopping, we’re women, it’s going with a purpose. They’re going to meet like-minded people because the connection is going to become increasingly important travel to destinations that inspire them but also to work on themselves. As we all know, emotional intelligence is paramount in how successful someone is in their personal life, their intimate relationships, as well as their careers that we all fought for ourselves.
Do you do any preparation with your clients before they come to the retreat? Is there a program in place for before and after? Is it someone who randomly will click online or get in touch with you and say, “I want to come to one of your retreats?”
If I don’t know an individual, I’ll usually make sure that I connect with that individual, and they know exactly what’s involved in the retreat process and the process of the work. I also have very strong preparation practices, as well as integration practices on my retreats. What do I mean by integration? It’s making real in your everyday life. How can we integrate everything that we’ve learned so it becomes a path forward for you?
That’s not just, “I had an amazing experience,” but then what did that experience teach you? How can you implement those teachings into your life so that you can affect your family? You can affect your community and the world at large if you so choose. I also have intuitive mentoring sessions as well as soul-purpose sessions for people that would like to take this work with me further.
Do you find people want to become practitioners after they experience it as well?
Yes. I do have an internationally accredited Shamanic Practitioner Program. One that I’m offering online for my Australian community because they cannot travel there. They’ve had the longest lockdowns in the world. I’m offering it to my Australian community online. Obviously, I grew up there. For the rest of the world, I’m about to do practitioner training here in Cancun which is basically full, apart from maybe one spot, then in 2022, in Portugal, France, and a few other places.
People are always asking me to teach them the tools of the trade. I attract a lot of people that are already practitioners, whether they’re psychologists, doctors, EFT practitioners, Reiki masters. A lot of people want to reconnect with the wisdom of nature because, ultimately, we are not separate from nature. We are a part of nature. We’ve just forgotten that. That’s why we have so many problems now with the Earth.
Do you find that somebody has something in them to do what you do like a special quality or energy or some insight into stuff that most people can’t see?
I feel that most of us have the capacity to see beyond what we’ve been taught at school. We’ve just forgotten. What I facilitate in this work are processes for people to remember whether they’re kinesthetic feeling, clear visual so they can see, or they have highly developed olfactory senses, smell and touch. We have all got gifts.
We’re taking two million bits of information per second, and we chunk it down to seven bites per second because that’s all we can take in. When you think about that, all of us have a beautiful capacity to be able to engage with the world of the intangible. Once again, I support people in that remembering that you only have to have a willingness to see through the eyes of your heart. That’s all.
Once they’ve explored that part of them where their eyes have been opened to something that was there but it was not seen by them, does their perspective change on how they live, how they view the world, other people, behaviors and everything? What changes in them? How do they go on afterward, knowing what they know now?
Emotional intelligence is paramount in how successful someone is in their personal life, intimate relationships, and careers.
One of the things that people share with me is that their connection to the natural world becomes a lot stronger. They don’t just look at seemingly inanimate objects like trees, rocks, flowers or plants in the same way ever again. They start realizing that everything is connected. Everything influences something else, whether it’s a tree or a rock, that everything has a consciousness and alive.
The awareness around the sensitivity to animals, to other human beings, and how people process information, how we receive information, how we give and share information becomes a lot more of this exquisite space. We realize that everything that we think, speak, and do in action has an effect on something else.
Shamanism is a path of direct revelation. What I mean by that is that nobody can say to you, to me or to anybody that it is not your truth. If your truth speaks to you through your connection with a tree, an animal, the Earth, the sky, the rain or whatever you receive at that moment, it becomes your embodied truth as long as it doesn’t come from the mind and it becomes a felt sense of knowing through the body.
It’s all about energy. Am I correct in saying that?
Everything is about energy, and Shamanism is definitely that path. It is a pathway. It doesn’t matter what religious practice you have. All religions are welcome in this path. Shamanism is not a religious path. It’s more of a spiritual Earth-centered practice. It’s a way of being and relating in life. That is the best way to describe it.
Does the practice of Reiki work with what you do or is it something completely different?
Reiki works with energy. I haven’t trained in Reiki, so I don’t know too much about Reiki. I know they use a lot of symbols. They work with hands, chakras, and things like that. Shamanism is more of an Earth-based practice. While there is healing involved in it, we’re working more with Earth energies rather than esoteric energies, even though there are a lot of overlapping principles here.
It is energy healing as well. I was wondering if sometimes some practitioners will use Reiki as well in their practice. Do they?
It’s 100%. In fact, we have some Reiki practitioners that are coming onto this upcoming retreat. They want to bring in different practices that will support them in their already developed work and big client base. They’re looking at different ways of engaging with the natural world to support their practice. That’s already beautiful. Reiki is a beautiful practice. I don’t feel that any energy practice has to compete with any other energy practice. I feel that when they work well together, they work very well with each other in fostering authentic transformation. Who doesn’t need more tools in their toolkit?
How many retreats have you done?
I’ve been working in this space since 2007. I don’t know how many retreats but I’ve worked with thousands of people all over the world.
What are you doing next?
I’m writing a book on the death of my son several years ago because that was my biggest wake-up call. That was my initiation to continue to foster and carve out this path. That’s the book that I’m writing now. There will be practices in there for people that are very practical because I’m talking about grief, which we’ve all gone through in our lives. It’s an invitation and an offering for people to look at grief and death as a natural part of life.
I’m bringing these practices and these teachings of what supported me in that process to heal and to walk with grief now rather than to be debilitated by it for the rest of my life, to see it as a path where I’ve been able to transform this deep pain into gifts of gold. What I’m interested in now is supporting others that have had challenging journeys and being able to use Earth-centered practices to transform the story so that it becomes a great gift for themselves in their life, and also for their communities.
That’s what I’m doing as part of my project in 2022. My next retreat is here in Cancun, which is my accredited Shamanic Practitioner Training. I’ve got retreats coming up in New York. I’ve got retreats in Poland. I’m moving to Portugal in May 2022. I’m setting up a retreat center in the next five years. I’m full and I love being creative.
It does give you energy as well. Some people love being full like that. When you’re doing what you love, you might be a little tired but you love that tired. It’s a good kind of tired. It’s a good type of fatigue. We have something in common because I too did write a book after my cancer diagnosis and my survival because I did have to come into this acceptance of death during my journey while I was going through that.
It propelled me to a different level in life. I say cancer did give me many gifts. My book did help and does help other people going through something like this because it gives a different perspective. I know your book will do the same because there are a lot of people that are suffering from a tremendous loss in their life. It shouldn’t suffocate them. I’m grateful to you for writing something like that. Do you have a name for this book that will be forthcoming or not yet?
It’s called Back From The Edge of the Unthinkable.
Everybody, look out for it when it does come out. When are you expecting it?
We forget that without our health, we have nothing. Health is true wealth.
Let’s say it’s a two-year project. I’m hoping by the end of 2022 but because I’m so busy and I’m in the middle of an international move of relocating as well, I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself. It’s within the next two years. I want to say thank you as well. Congratulations for turning your story of cancer into a story of wellbeing and a path of finding your way through this, but also supporting other people as well.
When anyone gets a diagnosis like that, you have to face the inevitable, which is that we are going to all die one day. Also, where can we bring balance back into our lives? It means that even though you’re obviously a lady who is full with her work and you love your work, it’s important that we understand what balance is as well and know what rest is. Thank goodness. I’m very good at doing nothing as well. I love sitting on the beach and relaxing when I need to when I feel depleted.
When you do that, you’re so much more creative and productive in anything else that you do when you are busy. Rest is underestimated.
Rest is important because if we are not filling up our cups first as men and women, it’s like the analogy of the face mask on the plane. If there’s anything happening, you’ve got to put the face mask on you first before you put it on your child. That’s the same thing with our lives. If we are not well, as you discovered, when all of us go through any illness, we’re always so grateful when we feel better again. We forget that without our health, we have nothing. Health is true wealth. This is where we need to always be in balance.
Everybody should try to keep within that balance as much as they can without stressing themselves off. I find that sometimes people stress themselves out to keep that balance. It’s not that way. Sometimes your life pulls you a little bit this way or that way, but as long as you’re flowing and creating that alignment. Thank you so much for being here. I enjoyed this conversation and learning more about what you do and your practice. Hopefully, we’ll get to meet each other soon when I come to Mexico because it’s definite, and we can discuss it a little more. I appreciate your input on this and the retreats. I know it’ll bring great value to my readers.
Thank you so much for having me, Catherine. You are a wonderful being.
Thank you. Take care.
- Beáta Alföldi
- The Earth Institute
- Book – Soul Shaker: A Whirlwind Awakening