How and Why to Prepare for a Soul Retrieval
What is Soul Loss? What is Soul Retrieval and Why Would Someone Need It?
The definitions below are from the fantastic Encyclopedia of Shamanism by Christina Pratt. I recommend picking up both volumes of the book if you’re interested in gaining a deep understanding of all things shamanic across the world throughout history: Volume 1 | Volume 2
Soul loss is defined as a spiritual illness that causes emotional, physical, and psychological disease. When parts of the soul are lost, crucial parts of the individual that provide life and vitality split off and become lost in non-ordinary reality where they exist outside of linear time. 
Soul loss can be caused by whatever a person experiences as traumatic relative to their soul. When a person experiences trauma, a part of their vital essence separates in order to survive the experience by escaping the full impact of the pain. In some cases individuals give their soul parts away due to behavior patterns set up by chronic low self-esteem, shame, and a sense of self as a victim. 
Possible symptoms of soul loss include feelings of chronic depression, alienation, a hole or incompleteness, emptiness, being cut off from a deep connection with life, or living a life that is without meaning or purpose. These feelings may be experienced as intense suffering or as a dull chronic ache masked by drug and alcohol use, entertainment, compulsive sex, or other addictions. 
Soul retrieval is the shamanic process by which the shaman enters non-ordinary reality to track, secure, and retrieve lost soul parts for a patient who has experienced soul loss. After the soul parts are returned to the patient’s body, it is traditional to recount some of the events that occurred in the shaman’s journey. 
When the shaman returns the lost soul parts to the patient, the source of the problem is resolved at the level of spirit. Then the shaman must facilitate the process of resolving the original reason the part left and restoring harmony between the patient and the soul part. If the soul loss occurred in the past, not only does the original trauma need to be expressed and released, but the behavior patterns formed to cope with the soul loss must be replaced with healthier behavior patterns. 
My Journey to Soul Retrieval
When I first read about soul retrieval, I had a feeling it was what I needed for the next step in my healing. I began scoping out different professionals that offered soul retrieval. I started following Lori Lipten’s event schedule. It was in May 2019 that she began offering a women’s soul healing circle. It was inexpensive compared to going straight for a soul retrieval, so I excitingly attended the first gathering. My first experience with the soul healing circle was so deeply moving that I have been attending it every month since.
In September’s soul healing circle, another woman was sharing about her soul retrieval with Lori, and it was then that it clicked for me. Intuitively knowing the answer already, I asked Lori for confirmation that I needed a soul retrieval and the answer was a resounding YES. My soul retrieval was scheduled for the beginning of October 2019.
I had 20 days before my retrieval and I was ridiculously excited. I wanted it to be today, not weeks from now! But I decided to be fully present and make the most of those days leading up to the soul retrieval. In those few weeks, I was extra intentional with how I went about each day.
Why Prepare for a Soul Retrieval?
Through the soul retrieval process, there is a possibility for you to receive:
- Soul parts you lost in this lifetime
- Soul parts you lost in past lives
- Power animals and their medicine
- Different insights, energies, or activations
You will receive what you are ready to receive and integrate.
If you prepare for your soul retrieval, you will receive more soul parts that may not have been ready if you hadn’t prepared. It’s a great idea to prepare in order to make your soul retrieval the most effective it could possibly be.
The integration process afterwards will go more smoothly for you.
If you positively shift your habits and behaviors prior to your soul retrieval, it will be a lot easier to continue on with those changes afterwards. Your newly retrieved soul parts will be able to integrate into your being in an easier, less dramatic, more sustainable way.
It will make the process easier for the shaman retrieving your soul parts.
They will end up doing less work tracking down certain soul parts, enabling them to expend less of their energy retrieving a single part. This may make the shaman more capable of looking farther and deeper during the retrieval, which can result in getting more soul parts back than if you hadn’t prepared.
When my soul retrieval finally happened, Lori told me I was one of the most prepared people she had ever done a soul retrieval for. She told me Spirit acknowledged that whatever I did to prepare, I did it well. Rather than having to search deeply for soul parts or negotiate with soul parts, so many of my soul parts were completely ready and waiting to come back. This resulted in a soul retrieval that was shorter, easier, and more effective than normal.
Soul Retrieval Preparations
The preparations for my soul retrieval included everything I did over the course of a year leading up to it. There’s no way to know just how much one action helped me prepare as compared to another action, so I felt it was important to list all the things I did. During this time period, I made my healing my top priority and focused on it every day. I believe the success resulted from how everything compounded together to support my healing from all angles and directions.
You do not need to take an all-or-nothing approach to your healing. You do not need to try everything at once.
Any and all work you intentionally put into your healing is better than not putting in any work at all. Every little bit of good intention adds up and multiples in time.
Do not compare your journey to someone else’s. Allow your own process to unfold however it flows most naturally in your life.
Be gentle with yourself and take the process one step at a time, at whatever pace feels right for you.
Deep Inner Work
Each person’s approach to doing their deep inner work is different.
There are so many things you can do to help prepare yourself for a soul retrieval.
There is no wrong approach so long as it leads towards your healing.
Seeing a therapist or other professional that can help direct the focus of your inner work and support you throughout the process is an option that I did not personally pursue but it is still completely valid and worthwhile.
I took a DIY self-directed exploratory approach to my inner work. This included:
- Shadow work, shadow work, shadow work!
- Honestly and curiously looking into the most traumatic and emotional times of this life that I had internalized, digging deep into the details and asking the tough questions, like: What really happened? What aspect of it bothered me the most? What I was feeling at the time? How did I respond? In what ways has this influenced my automatic unconscious responses in certain situations? How do I feel about it now? How can I begin to shift the narrative around this?
- Allowing myself to feel and express all my feelings completely
- Releasing, letting go, and directing a whole lot of forgiveness towards myself and others
- Writing through my feelings in a journal
- Creating art and music to heal through those feelings
- Recording and analyzing my dreams in a dream journal
- Meditating to go deeper into this healing work through altered states of consciousness induced by listening to specific binaural beats
- Praying for and receiving healing support from my spirit guides
- Consciously crying, laughing, dancing, and singing songs that inspire energy to flow freely throughout my body
- Taking spiritual baths where I sang, meditated, and enabled myself to release energies stored in my body
Past Life Work
This process was quite similar to the Deep Inner Work above, except this was focused on the most traumatic and emotional times from past lives rather than my current life. I would work with a psychic or get an Akashic Records reading, ask specific questions about past lives, and allow myself to fully process the information received. Each time I learned something new about a past life, I went through an integration process which took time and deliberate effort. I allowed myself patience during this process to completely understand what I had just learned before going deeper. Whether that took days, weeks, or months, I allowed it to unfold however it needed to. The process of understanding our past lives is powerful and deeply transformative.
Energetically acknowledging and exploring the details of my past lives helped prepare those specific soul parts to return.
For each situation I learned about, I dug deeper to find out why things went the way they did. I looked at patterns of behavior in past lives as they relate to this life. I was able to pinpoint the root of certain patterns and begin to change the way I thought about certain things. I was able to identify the lessons that I struggled to learn throughout many lifetimes, including my current one. This process helped me consciously shift behaviors and beliefs that had been continuing to manifest unconsciously.
Since my soul retrieval, I began experiencing past life memories coming through in my dreams. I’m continuing to work with these past life memories as I’m documenting them and considering the deeper meaning of how they each apply to my current life.
I gave myself reiki healing every day: during meditations, spiritual baths, and before bed each evening. Reiki healing was a huge part of my preparations in combination with the deep inner work and past life work.
I used all the symbols I learned in the Reiki I/II and Master level classes. I would create a “distance sandwich” where I used a distance symbol, then all the other symbols, and then another distance symbol to complete the sandwich.
To help me work through specific issues in the moment: I used a distance sandwich with the intention to “send healing energy to the parts of my self that need it the most in this present time.”
To prepare my soul parts for return: I used a distance sandwich with the intention to “send healing energy to the parts of my self that need it the most across all space and time.”
Once I gained insights about certain past lives, I used this strategy to deliberately direct healing energy to those specific points in time.
Other Actions Worth Mentioning
Overall, I took excellent care of my body, mind, and spirit. I made and consumed home-cooked meals of organic foods. I drank teas made with a variety of beneficial herbs. I saw a torque release chiropractor 2-3 times per week. I saw a massage therapist / craniosacral therapist / energy healer 1-3 times per month. I did physical therapy exercises, self-massage, and soft tissue work daily. I spent a lot of time outside enjoying nature.https://www.strongwithpurpose.com/wp-admin/profile.php
I overcame all my self-destructive habits. I released toxic relationship patterns from my life. Once I created the space to have more meaningful friendships, these manifested and flourished joyously.
I experienced so much unconditional love by spending lots of time with my family and my two dogs. I felt a sense of belonging and community by attending a monthly women’s soul healing circle.
The week of my soul retrieval, I:
- Meditated once for an hour and took two spiritual baths, taking specific focus to balance all my chakras
- Got a 90 minute massage
- Got chiropractic adjustments
- Received an Akashic Records reading
The day of my soul retrieval, I did not do anything demanding. I only got an adjustment, wrote, sang, and meditated. I felt completely ready for my soul retrieval—and by that point, I really was ready.
The gifts I received through my soul retrieval were truly more valuable than ANYTHING. I can’t fully express it in words. It’s a feeling deep in my soul. A feeling of wholeness, of purpose, of possibility…
I am of the belief that mostly everyone needs a soul retrieval.
Soul loss is the least discussed cause of illness in our modern day society. How much less suffering would humanity experience if the tremendously beneficial effects of soul retrieval were well-known?
Even if you fall into the minuscule quantity of people who have lived this life unscathed by trauma and hardship, there may be a lot of it in your past lives. In the process of exploring these areas, you may discover soul parts and entire abilities that you haven’t been able to incarnate with because you lost them many lifetimes ago. Receiving these can be a deeply powerful and life-changing process that is worth exploring.
Moving towards your healing is a completely worthwhile endeavor—not just at an individual level, but at a collective level as well.
Some of the most important actions we can personally take towards collective healing include doing our deep inner work, past life work, and getting a soul retrieval.
We create the world we live in. If we want to change what we don’t like in the world, we must start by changing what we don’t like about ourselves. ―Sharon Gannon
If any part of this post resonated with you, I recommend trying some of the preparations I mentioned and seeking out a shaman who specializes in soul retrieval.
I am deeply passionate about the shamanic process of soul retrieval. Whether you have questions or comments about this post, or you’d like to share your experiences, I would love to hear from you!
Thank you for reading. I wish you good health, healing, and happiness!
 Pratt, Christina. (2007). An Encyclopedia of Shamanism (Volume Two, N-Z). New York, NY: The Rosen Publishing Group, Inc.