5 Ways to Influence the Energy of A Room
Barfing in a parking lot in Echo Park taught me more about energy than any class ever did.
It was a few years ago, when I was the Global Editorial Director of a well-known wellness website. A lot of my work involved proofreading stories about smoothie bowls, but often I'd get to interview individuals in the wellness space. One time I interviewed Bella Hadid and all she talked about was the restaurant Jitlada — it was great.
On this sunny day in Los Angeles, I was meeting a smoothie bowl influencer on the east side of LA to interview her for a feature on the site. Immediately when she arrived I knew something was off. Although we had an hour booked (and I'd hoofed it from Brentwood in LA traffic to make it to Echo Park on a weekday afternoon), our interview lasted for less than 15 minutes.
The bubbly, vivacious persona from Instagram was nowhere to be found. Instead, I struggled to get more than one-word answers from her. Listen, I know I'm not for everyone, but I'm pretty damn charming when I need to be — especially when it's my job. So this interaction was an anomaly.
And something else weird happened. During our short time together, I felt the tell-tale ping of a migraine kick in. My stomach churned. Somewhat grateful that our time together ended early, I rushed out to my parked car ... and unceremoniously ralphed on the asphalt. Embarrassing and disgusting!
Intuitively, I knew that something was up with the energy of that woman. As I drove away, I started to feel better. The further I got from the cafe, the more I felt like myself. By some small miracle, the migraine evaporated and the nausea faded. Energy is powerful, man.
I learned a really great lesson that afternoon — energy is powerful, but I am, too. I never want to be overpowered by someone else's energy in the room again. Maybe you can relate: Have you ever walked into a room and felt it distort your mood or energy? Perhaps you had physical symptoms like me, or it was a more energetic or emotional reaction. (If you've ever felt your stomach knot up when your angry boss walks into the office, you know what I'm talking about).
Having control over energy, and how we're affected by the energy around us, is a skill that everyone could benefit from. It's important in both work and personal settings; part mystical, part extremely realistic.
Keep scrolling for five directives to harnessing your own energy — so when you walk into the room you influence everyone around you to level up.
Realize You Are Wonderful, But You're Not for Everyone
First and foremost — you are powerful. Not the crystals, not the incantations, not the Palo Santo. You. So while it's helpful to layer on other tools and objects to help strengthen your aura, at the end of the day you are the most powerful thing that affects your energy.
Second, it's important to ask yourself why you want to influence the energy of the room. Most of the time, we want to control the energy around us because we want to make things more convenient and comfortable for ourselves. There's nothing wrong with that, as long as you're not harming others in the process.
The most obvious way to control the energy in a space is through your actions and your words. If you've got an authentic, embodied smile on your face you're presenting a very different energy than a scowl. Walking into a room and screaming, "WHAT UP, MF'ERS!!!!" has a very different vibe than walking up to people individually and introducing yourself with a hug. Neither is right or wrong! But influencing the space around you starts with the most obvious actions — your words and your physical body language.
When you operate these levers from a place of authenticity, you might expect everyone to be grateful and honoring of your authentic nature. They will not be. You are not for everyone, and that's OK. Not everyone has to like you, and you don't have to like everyone. Realizing and coming to terms with that is a baller move that will leave you truly exuding positive, calm energy.
Try Herbs Like Astragalus
Best herb for strengthening your energetic body and keeping icky energy from getting "stuck" to you. Astragalus is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to strengthen the wei qi energetic body. Add it into your coffee or smoothie in the morning.
Increase The Range of Your Energetic Aura
Everyone has an electromagnetic field or aura that surrounds their body. In some traditions, it's believed that the aura extends 14" out from the body. Practicing xi gong is an excellent way to feel your aura and bring more awareness to your subtle bodies.
You can also practice Kundalini yoga, and this exercise in particular, to strengthen and extend your aura out. A powerful aura speaks before you do.
If you're Reiki-attuned, you can ground and clear the energy of the room with the flick of a hand. Reiki is a Japanese energy healing modality that’s passed down through a teaching lineage, so unfortunately you can’t receive an attunement (sort of like a certification — a Reiki practitioner must be “attuned” to the energy in order to practice). It’s often used to heal people, but it can also be applied to spatial work.
If the vibe is funky, Reiki practitioners can use symbols to reverberate positive energy through the space and clear any nasty stuff that’s floating around.
If you’re working with someone 1:1 who’s … difficult, try to focus intently on what they’re saying and how they’re saying it. It’s rare that we truly listen to people — most of the time, we’re listening only for when we can jump into the conversation to respond. We even do things like smile, nod our head, or say things like, “Yes!” while another person is talking. But we’re not actually hearing what the other person is authentically trying to tell us; rather, we’re influencing their message by giving them positive (smiling, nodding) or negative feedback (interrupting). Either way, we’re not really listening to what they came to say. Instead, we’re subtly guiding them to what we want to talk about through a combination of body and verbal language.
If you’re really listening, try looking the speaker directly in their eye and without nodding or smiling. Can you listen without responding? Just listen. Be a blank (but present!) slate.
You’ll be surprised at how quickly someone’s entire energetic field can shift after this sort of direct focus. It’s powerful. Sometimes it can be off-putting, especially if the person doesn’t speak intentionally. But most of the time, the speaker feels extremely honored by the listener — whether they realize it or not.
Giving people the space to be honored allows them to drop the baggage they might’ve come to you with. When we feel seen for who we are, we don’t have to put up blocks, or be shitty, or loud, or crazy, or the life of a party. We can just be ourselves. That’s the greatest gift you can give someone.
So the next time you walk into an intimidating meeting, or a party full of strangers, or stressy family dinner, remember that your powerful energy is the only energy that matters. You’ve always got your own back — and above all, when you know how navigate your own energy, you don’t need to worry about anyone else but yourself.