By Susan Kapatoes, MHA

There was an early period in my life when I worked in health food stores as a service representative and interacted with customers on a daily basis. On this particular occasion, it was Christmas time, and the store where I was working also sold Christmas wreaths that were displayed just outside the main building. I was busy inside when a woman in her sixties approached me, demanding that I come outside to help her find a particular wreath she was looking for. All of the outside attendants were aiding other customers, so she came inside seeking assistance.

I have had customers ask for help before, but this woman was brash, rude, and demeaning. Her anger was brimming over the top, and I could not understand why it was being directed at me. I was truly taken aback because I had worked in retail for a few years prior to this incident but had never encountered such audaciousness before. She was incessantly complaining and would not stop her negative bantering. While this confrontation was unfolding, there was one thing that was on my side.

During my previous years in retail, I had come across a book that described the difference between reacting and responding. Reacting is an unconscious instinct that we automatically do, have done before, and keep repeating. For example, if someone starts yelling at you with anger, you will probably feel defensive and reciprocate that anger back to the person. In many ways, reacting is a natural impulse; it is something we do without even thinking about it. The problem with reacting is that it can start a chain reaction between you and the other person. Both of you will keep passing the anger back and forth with no potential ending in sight.

Responding, on the other hand, is a conscious decision to change the direction of an interaction by responding from a positive place. In a responsive situation, if that same person approaches you with anger, you would not react with your anger. Instead, you would disengage your emotions and feel neutrality toward that person. You would continue to treat the person with respect and act as if nothing out of the ordinary is happening.

In reality, you are not giving that person fuel to perpetuate their negativity. You have now become an empowered person assessing the situation objectively rather than employing your emotions, which can cloud your judgment.

Let us now return to the woman who was demanding that I help her find a Christmas wreath outside the country store. When I realized that this lady was not going to stop her disrespectful ways, I had a choice to make. I could react with coldness, lead her to the appropriate wreath, and then find an outside attendant to assist her. Or, I could respond in a positive manner, continuing to treat her with courtesy.

I chose to continue with courtesy and compassion, but it was not easy. This woman was the most cruel and challenging client that I had encountered in my entire retail career. As we stepped outside, I glanced to the sky, and inwardly asked for God to help me with this situation. It was a fervent plea, and honestly, I had no hope that it was going to end in a positive fashion. When we arrived at the table of wreaths, I began to talk about the different sizes and types. I even made small talk with this woman, all the while pretending that this was a pleasant encounter with a cordial customer.

While I was speaking, the woman suddenly stopped me and began to apologize. She said that I was treating her so nice, and she was treating me so mean. I could not believe my ears. Her eyes then filled with tears as she told me her story. Her husband of forty years had died suddenly from a freak accident just a month before. He was on a ladder trying to hang their outdoor Christmas wreath, which he had done so many times before. But on this occasion, something caused the ladder to become unstable; he lost his footing and tumbled onto the ground from a height of thirty feet. He hit his head on the concrete driveway and died instantly.

My own tears began to form as I listened to this woman tell her story with the look of despair on her face. Our eyes were locked together, and while she was speaking, time seemed to have stopped. There were people all around us—hustling, bustling, having lively conversations—but we just stood there, cocooned in a heart-to-heart connection. The love that she felt for her husband was palpable, and I was astonished at what was transpiring between us. I told her that I was so sorry about her husband and understood what she was going through. She did purchase a wreath, and we hugged each other good-bye.

Susan, a holistic health practitioner and teacher, is the founder of Inspire Your Journey. She offers a Soul Transformation Program and BEMER Therapy Sessions for individuals who are ready to discover the highest and best version of themselves, and change their lives for the better.









by Susan Kapatoes, MHA, CPC

What are Chakras?

The word chakra comes from the ancient Sanskrit language of India and simply means wheel or circle. The term describes the whirlpools or vortices of energy located along the central axis of our bodies in the spinal cord and brain. The purpose of the chakras is to spin and draw Universal Life Force Energy into the physical body in order to maintain health and balance on every level of our being: the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual.

According to a research study documented in the Journal of Behavioral Optometry, 

The chakra system (the second part of the biofield measurement)…is over 4,000 years old and has been applied both in the Yoga philosophy and in Auyrveda medicine. Chakras are comprised of seven energy centers that correspond to deep wisdom on physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual levels. Each chakra is linked to glands, organs, and the nervous system in an integrated fashion. The larger and more aligned the chakras are to the midline, the more a person
can support his own wellness.

In the Indian heritage, the chakras have been called the 7 shining places in the body, known as the brain (Sahasrara), medulla oblongata (Ajna), and 5 spinal centers—cervical (Visuddha), dorsal (Anahata), lumbar (Manipura), sacral (Svadhisthana), and coccygeal (Muladhara)— through which the Spirit becomes connected.


7th – crown or uppermost part of the cerebrum
6th – third eye connected by polarity with the medulla oblongata or brain stem

Spinal Centers

5th – Cervical or throat
4th – Dorsal or heart
3rd – Lumbar or solar plexus
2nd – Sacral or pelvis
1st – Coccygeal or base of spine

Chakra Colors & Frequencies

Each chakra is associated with a color and these colors are arranged in the same way as the colors of the rainbow.  Colors also emit certain wavelength frequencies and therefore have a certain vibratory rate. In ascending order from the root chakra to the crown chakra, the colors of the chakras and their corresponding color frequencies is as follows.  You will notice that the vibration of the chakras increases as you move upward from the base toward the crown chakra.  


Chakra Color Frequency THz
Root Red 430-480
Sacral Orange 480-510
Solar Plexus Yellow 510-540
Heart Green 540-580
Throat Sky Blue 580-610
Third Eye Indigo Blue 610-670
Crown Violet 670-750


The Meaning of our Chakras

Each chakra expresses a different emotional quality, such as love or being able to express yourself. These qualities can manifest in a positive or negative way, depending on which direction your energy is heading. When our energy is moving downwards, we are stuck in our growth and may cling to bad habits which bind us to fear-based emotions. When we raise our energy upward, it also raises our consciousness, which clears away bad habits and desires. It all comes down to INTENTION.

When our energy is moving upwards = Awareness & Evolvement
When our energy is moving downwards = Ignorance & Self-Sabotage   

1st – Root Chakra

This chakra is located at the base of the spine. It represents security. When our consciousness is going downward in this chakra, we become too attached to material things, greedy, and insecure with ourselves. When we raise our energy up through this chakra, our relationship with the material world become healthy. We are not obsessively attached to material gain, remembering that human relationships are always more important than acquiring things.    

2nd – Sacral

The second chakra is about two inches below the belly button, in the area of the reproductive organs. This chakra represents creativity; not only for the ability to create new life but for the birthing of new ideas as well. It is also related to our emotions and how we use our sexual energy. In its lower form, it can cause a misuse of sexual energy with the goal of controlling and manipulating others. As we raise our state of consciousness in this chakra, we no longer abuse our sexuality but use it in a respectful way. We learn to control our emotions, intimacy, and creativity in a healthy way that benefits all people involved.     

3rd – Solar Plexus

The solar plexus chakra is in the stomach area, just behind the navel. It represents our personal power and self-confidence. Its lower form can cause the desire for power that is strictly used for selfish purposes. As with all choices, it comes down to INTENTION. How are you using your power?  When we raise our energy up through this chakra and connect to its higher form, we become self-empowered with a service-to-others mentality. Our attitude transforms from, what’s in it for me to how can I be of best service to others. The magic to this formula is that when we help others, we automatically help ourselves at the same time.

4th – Heart

The fourth chakra, also known as the heart chakra, is located in the center of the chest. This chakra is all about love. In its highest form, this love is all-embracing and unconditional. When we are feeling unconditional love, we don’t judge or scrutinize others because we know that each person is responsible for themselves. When our energy goes downward through this chakra, it becomes a love based on restrictions. There are many kinds of love: personal relationships, love for a pet, a friend, etc. The challenge is to keep your heart open so that you can allow the quality of love to enter your life which gives you comfort and support.       

5th – Throat

This chakra is in the throat area. In its higher form, it represents our ability to express ourselves authentically and genuinely. It gives us calmness and inner peace when we are able to speak our truth and stand-up for ourselves. When our energy is directed downward in this chakra, we have difficulty speaking honestly and may feel awkward verbally expressing our emotions. Instead of feeling peace and calm, we may feel restless, uneasy, and vulnerable.    

6th – Third Eye

This chakra represents our intuition and higher wisdom. It has two poles, positive and negative, like a battery. The negative pole is at the base of the skull, where the medulla oblongata is located in the brain. This is where our ego and sense of individual self resides. By rising our state of consciousness through this chakra and sublimating (redirecting) the energy upwards, we are able maintain our connection and awareness of our Higher Self or Soul.  

The positive pole of the sixth chakra is between your eyebrows in the frontal lobe area of your brain. It is also called the “spiritual eye” or “third eye.” When your energy is blocked in this chakra, you can become overly analytical, relying solely on facts, figures, and science-based verification while dismissing the wisdom of your intuition. When this chakra is open, you feel balanced and can apply the wisdom of both your analytical mind and your intuitive heart.     

7th – Crown

The seventh chakra is at the top of the head. It is also known as the crown chakra or thousand-petaled lotus. It represents our connection to Source, the Creator, or All That Is. It is our link to a higher power that is greater than ourselves. It is at this chakra where we completely merge with Divine Energy. When this chakra is open, we feel strong, connected, joyful, and free.  

Blocked Chakras

Just like we take a shower everyday to clean our physical body, it is important that we also cleanse our chakras on a regular basis. Due to stress, emotional baggage, and the anxiety of everyday living, our chakras can become stagnant. When they are not spinning properly, the symptoms can present themselves differently depending upon which chakra is involved.

For example, if your first chakra is closed, you probably feel unsafe in this world and are not willing to take any risk that might move you forward. Those who have a blocked second chakra will encounter emotional and intimacy issues in relationships. If your solar plexus is closed, you consistently feel like a victim instead of an empowered person. If your heart chakra is closed, you have difficulty finding authentic love and connecting with people in a genuine way. If your throat chakra is closed, you are not speaking your truth. If your third eye is closed, you are probably ignoring your intuition. If your crown chakra is closed, you are most likely feeling disconnected from your own divinity, and the Source of Creation or All That Is.          

Cleaning Your Chakras

How do you clean your chakras and get them spinning properly? There are different methods  on how to clean your chakras. Keep in mind there is not one right answer nor is there only one way to accomplish this goal. I suggest that you find a method that you like best.  

Cleansing your chakras should only take a few minutes. Written below is the method that I use. When you first start practicing, I suggest going into your meditation room or entering a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed. When you do this everyday and get comfortable with it, you’ll be able to clear your chakras very quickly using your intention.

  • Focus on your root chakra at the base of your spine. Imagine, visualize, or feel a bright ruby red ball of light there. See this ball of red light spinning clockwise. If you sense any dark energy, use the force of the spin to clear it away. Imagine it spinning all away.
  • Focus on your second chakra about two inches below your belly button. Imagine it as a beautiful ball of orange light. See this ball of orange light spinning clockwise.
  • Now move your attention to your solar plexus chakra in the upper abdomen or stomach area. Imagine a powerful yellow sun there. Spin this yellow sun clockwise.  
  • Bring your attention to your heart area now. Imagine, visualize, or feel an emerald green ball of light there. Spin this green ball of light clockwise.
  • Now focus on your throat. Imagine a bright sky blue ball of light there. Spin it clockwise.  
  • Focus now on your third eye. On your forehead between your eyes. Imagine an indigo light in that area. Spin it clockwise.
  • Bring your focus now to the top of your head. Imagine a shining ball of purple light at the top of your head. Spin this ball of purple light clockwise.

At the end of this exercise, I imagine pouring white light into my body. Sometimes I add golden light for protection or green light for healing. If it is challenging to imagine the chakras spinning clockwise, simply state the following intention at the end: I intend that each chakra is healthy and spinning clockwise. Take a few relaxing deep breathes.

The Benefits

When we are aware of the condition of our chakras and take responsibility to keep them clear, we empower ourselves to live a life that is more deliberate rather than feel like a victim most of the time. We recharge, reboot, and cleanse these centers so that our energy can continue to flow in a constructive way. When our chakras are balanced, we can take charge of our health and function at an optimal level on a day-to-day basis.

Interested in learning more?



Susan Kapatoes, MHA, CPC  is a Holistic Health Practitioner, Nutritionist, Reiki Master, Meditation Instructor, and published author. She is the owner of Inspire Your Journey and a Wellness Partner with Amare Global, the Mental Wellness Company. She is available for appointments at the SheBreathes Balance & Wellness Studio in Walpole, MA. 


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