Are you suffering from Anhedonia….or having a Spiritual Awakening?

How can shamanic healing assist people who are suffering from Anhedonia?

Anhedonia…. A pleasant name for an unpleasant condition. The word Anhedonia comes from the Greek language and means ‘without pleasure.’ Sufferers find themselves unable to experience pleasure or feel their experience of pleasure significantly reduced. Yes, that pleasure can mean the physical pleasure usually enjoyed during sex – loss of libido along with loss of ability to orgasm is one symptom, but Anhedonia can often wipe out all pleasure from our lives such as.

  • The hobbies we once enjoyed now seem boring
  • We take little or no pleasure in food we once loved
  • We pull ourselves away from close friends and family members we were once close to
  • We reduce or stop social interaction
  • The beauty of nature leaves us cold

While it is common for all of us to have an occasional ‘down day,’ Anhedonia can last for weeks or even many months. While there is a correlation with Anhedonia and Major Depressive Disorder, not all sufferers of depression experience Anhedonia and not all sufferers of Anhedonia suffer from depression.

Please note – if you think you may be suffering from the symptoms above, it is important to consult your doctor or your mental health professional as soon as possible.

Anhedonia or Spiritual Awakening

As well as affecting mental health, Anhedonia has a physical element attached to it, as  reduced activity in the ventral striatum of the brain – which relates to motivation and reward – can be seen along with an imbalance of neurotransmitters such as dopamine. Therefore, despite what people might say, it is not just something you can just ‘snap out of.’

Because the motivation/reward centre of the brain is compromised, the sufferer can go one of two ways – the first is to just sink further and further into a joyless state, or the other more worrying option is for the sufferer to look for increased stimulus to actually feel something.  This can involve excesses of alcohol or food or lead to substance abuse – to try and find that much needed ‘high,’ – or involve the seeking of adrenaline highs from ‘risky’ activities. For example, you may purchase a high-performance car or motorbike and regularly speed in it or take risks with your driving, risking not only your life but the lives of others. Maybe you take up activities such as sky diving, rock climbing, base jumping, or storm chasing. Your thrills may take a darker turn, such as self-harming, picking fights, committing robbery or vandalism, or you may simply have an affair or become sexually promiscuous. This is why is it essential that you seek help from a medical professional if you experience periods of joylessness. But shamanic healing can also help immensely at healing the root of the issue and returning you to a fully joyful state through processes such as past life healing, power retrieval and soul retrieval (click on the links to understand these processes more fully).

Anhedonia is more likely to affect those assigned female at birth than those assigned male. While it is often seen in people with a genetic predisposition to depression, environmental factors can also play a part. For example, people who suffer chronic pain or serious illness can be affected, as can those living with eating disorders, substance abusers and sufferers of PTSD. Anhedonia is often found in people who have suffered traumatic experiences, as the numbing of senses is a protection mechanism employed by both the brain and the soul after trauma to help the individual to cope with what has happened to them. (For more information on this subject, please refer to my blog on Soul Retrieval and Healing Depression).


As a shaman and a spiritual teacher with nearly twenty years’ experience of assisting people worldwide, I understand that if a person presents with a condition such as Anhedonia there is probably more going on than only a physical/mental health issue, because I understand that we are so much more than just our bodies and we are affected by far more than we think. Yes, we exist on the physical and mental levels, but we also exist on the emotional, energetic, and spiritual levels and issues affect us on all these levels, so it makes sense that they need to be healed on all these levels and shamanic healing can provide this. We also exist not only on a conscious level but also sub-conscious, unconscious and superconscious level so again we need healing on all these levels. One of the reasons I am so passionate about shamanic healing is it is the only healing methodology I have found in over 25 years of searching that heals on multiple levels. Shamanic healing is the oldest form of healing on the planet, some say it could be 60,000 years old  – it is still around for good reason, it is still around because it works! Additionally, we are not only affected by the traumas that occur in this lifetime, but also by the events of all past lifetimes, and even more than that, we are affected directly by all our ancestors and the traumas and imprints passed down to us from their lifetimes. And spiritually we are affected by our soul’s journey in this lifetime and what we came here to learn – what our Higher Selves are bringing to us so that we learn to progress and evolve as souls on a spiritual journey. We are also affected by the energy body that surrounds our physical body, that holds on to trauma from all lifetimes. If this is blocked and heavy this WILL have an effect on our mental state! And if we are a shell of a person because we have suffered soul loss through childhood abuse or trauma, then we need those aspects of self healed and returned to us through the process of soul retrieval so we can come back to life once more. The good news is, shamanic healing can help heal on all levels of a persons being.

Anhedonia or Spiritual Awakening

Let me give you a couple of examples. Many, many years ago now I had a lovely female client who was depressed, and felt no joy in life, no matter what she did. Far from being in a difficult situation, this lady had an amazing life. She had a husband she adored and who adored her. Her husband was successful, and she had a large and beautiful home in a great area. She had beautiful, happy, healthy children. There were no money worries. She had her own business which meant a lot to her personally and she was successful at it. She had had loving parents who were still alive, and she could not remember any traumatic events in this lifetime and had enjoyed a carefree, loving childhood. This lady told me she had every reason to be happy, yet she had never, ever felt happiness, in fact all she had ever felt – in her whole life –  was a deep grief and sadness. In her healing session with me, we found a past life self that needed healing. We found that my client had once been a powerful Indian Chief. One day this Chief went out into nature, away from the tribe to carry out a ceremony on top of a high cliff. During this ceremony an enemy tribe invaded his settlement and slaughtered the men, women, children and livestock of his tribe, all while the Chief looked down from up above, powerless to do anything as he was too far away to help. But this was his tribe, and they were his responsibility. In that moment he was overcome with grief at failing his people. And his grief was mighty. I worked with him, (the past life version of my client) and helped him to see that the massacre was not his fault, that he would have helped if he could but he was simply far away. But this aspect of my client’s soul was still trapped in the trauma of that lifetime, still looking down at the bloody carnage below and feeling the devastation of loss, guilt and grief. Eventually, after much persuading I helped him to understand that that lifetime was indeed over, and had been for hundreds of years. I assured him that I would help him get to heaven. His response was, ‘I cannot go until they go,’ and he showed me that as the massacre had been such a shock, many souls of his tribespeople were still trapped in that bloody valley.  So from one client I ended up having to heal hundreds of souls and send them to the light, after which finally, the Chief found peace and healing having served his tribe the best way he could, and he left my clients body and went to the light. I gently roused my client to a waking state and she said she felt as if the heaviest weight had been lifted from her. The story of the Chief made sense to her, and she commented that she had always felt incredibly guilty but could never figure out why. She said she felt truly happy for the first time in her life, and she never looked back. I heard from her several months later and she wrote to say that she could now truly enjoy the incredible life and blessings she had and was so grateful for my help.

creative pottery class

So that was how a past life can affect us, but we can also be adversely affected by our ancestors. I had a client who had suffered from overeating and bingeing all of her life. She had spent nearly two decades trying various types of therapy and every type of diet but only put on weight and continued to obsess about food night and day. This was affecting her health and her marriage, and she was at her wits end. She too found little joy in life despite living an abundant lifestyle with a loving husband and family. We worked on clearing up her energy field so she felt lighter energetically, and we also worked on correcting some negative subconscious beliefs.  She later reported that although there was some improvements in her mood, she was still overeating and still feeling low with little motivation for anything. We then worked on healing her ancestral line. We found an ancestor who had witnessed the after-effects of a massacre which occurred in this century. There were bodies and blood everywhere, and the ancestor was beside herself with fear and grief. This fear and grief was felt so strongly it made its way down to my client’s body through her DNA. Her overeating was an attempt to push these very heavy and upsetting emotions down, to literally smother them (even though the emotions were not actually hers). When we healed and cleared the ancestor the reason for the overeating was no longer there and my client no longer felt the need to over-eat. The next time I spoke to her she reported that she had lost a significant amount of weight, was loving a new exercise regime, had started some new hobbies, was eating sensibly but ‘hardly thinking about food.’ She reported that she felt happy, she was decorating her house and things with her husband were wonderful.

I hope these two client cases illustrate that it’s not always ‘us’ that is the problem, but it is important to understand the intelligence of the body. In both these cases the body, (which energetically carries the imprints and emotions of our ancestors and our past lives) created ‘symptoms,’ in order to force the ‘owner’of the body to seek healing. The body wants us to heal all of the things that affects it or creates blockages in our energy field, because the body’s natural state and preferred state is health – and it will do whatever it can to get us to do our personal healing work. Therefore, the shaman takes very little notice of the ‘symptom’ or issue that the client has, because this is generally not the problem as the problem is much deeper. So, if I have a client with cancer for example, I very rarely focus on the tumour itself, but find out what the body is trying to get healed. Once that issue is cleared and healed, the body normally then heals the tumour or symptom it presented with itself. In the case of Anhedonia, the body is using joylessness as a red flag the body to get our attention and say, ‘Hey, something deep needs healing here! And I will be a nuisance until you get it sorted out.’

So we have covered the physical reasons that joylessness may occur, the mental reasons, the energetic reasons and the emotional reasons, but what about the soul or spiritual reasons? What if, instead of suffering from Anhedonia, we are actually goes through a spiritual awakening, as many people are doing now. Remember, we are ALL here on our spiritual journey, whether we acknowledge that or not! Additionally, we don’t have to belong to a church, mosque, temple, or system of belief in order to be on a spiritual journey. Client’s often have a hard time understanding this, they say, ‘Oh no, I’m not spiritual at all, I just want xyz fixed.’ But we are all spiritual (simply because we are spirits residing in bodies) and we are all on a spiritual journey – like it or not, accept it or not.


First, let’s look at the cycles of life. Generally, children of full of wonder for the world. They will spend hours watching a spider weave a web, wonder how apples appear from blossoms, want to explore this and that. Our teenage years tend to be difficult time for everyone as we move from child to adult status and battle with new hormones – so let’s leave that stage for now. In our twenties, life tends to be about gaining. Gaining careers, cars, homes, designer labels, handbags, experiences, social lives, travelling. Generally, our thirties are the same, if we haven’t already found a partner and started a family and this is where we look to gain, or continue our slog up our chosen career ladder. We may also start to ask questions and look into spiritual matters.

In our forties however, generally we have done a lot, seen a lot. Now, rather than working a 15 hour day at the law firm we are considering ‘what its all about’ and attempting a better work life balance. We yearn to stay home and bake a cake, or have a pyjama day or a spa day. We may well have already experienced a lot, travelled a lot, hit the ‘big highs’ had the big wins but now our values are shifting. The things on our bucket list have some ticks against them. We might not value millions of followers on Instagram as much as we did, preferring a valued circle of friends who you can call at three in the morning when you are having a bad moment. The things then that bought us pleasure in our twenties and thirties may not bring us the same pleasure in our forties and fifties. Therefore, we are not suffering from Anhedonia because owning the latest iPhone isn’t giving us a buzz, we are just maturing. It’s just a phone. Or a bag, or a car. Our desire for material possessions diminishes as we mature, instead we look for new experiences.


In our fifties we start to become aware of how quickly time is passing us by. We value our health, and see that the cheap baubles of the material world don’t make us happy at all, but instead we look to feed our souls, with beauty, creativity maybe music or dance. In short, as soon as we come out of our thirties the chances of something giving us a high are lowered. Firstly, because we’ve probably already experienced most things if we are lucky, and also we tend to become more creatures of habit, less adventurous. We know what we like and we stick to it.

So when looking at things such as depression and Anhedonia, we have to ask ourselves, what is new in my life? Our souls like new things! And our souls can get depressed – they need beauty, nature, music, dance, creativity!  When was the last time you made a new friend? Tried a new hobby? Tried a new cuisine? Went somewhere new? Changed your routine? Is it Anhedonia, …or is it boredom?

Additionally, how much exercise do you get? Your body needs fresh air and it needs movement and exercise, preferably with other people. When did you last exert yourself? Whenever I work with clients suffering with depression without fail they tell me two things. First, they rarely leave the house, second, they rarely get any exercise. In fact, some just move from the bed to the sofa and back again. Your body needs the outside! It needs vitamin D from the sun! It needs a bracing wind to literally blow the cobwebs in your energy field away. The earth itself has a healing resonance which can lift you! It’s called the Schumann Resonance, look it up.

The other thing that clients with depression tell me is that they eat poorly, often stuffing in sweets and carbohydrates. These foods are low vibration foods, and they will depress you! You need foods that have the sunshine in them, so the sunshine comes into you. Eating sweet things or lots of carbs can create issues with Candida bacteria which can eventually cause chronic fatigue and fogginess, which feels a lot like depression.

baked salmon garnished with asparagus tomatoes with herbs

Additionally, a depressed client will tell me that their house is cluttered, or unloved. A clean uncluttered and energetically clear house is very important to physical and mental health as the philosophy of Feng Shui tells us. (please refer to my article on clearing your house). There is a saying which I love and have found to be very true – ‘Show me your garden and I will show you your life.’ What does your garden say about you? Or if you don’t have a garden but have plants in your house, how are they looking? Perky? Or shrivelled?

But if you are doing all these good things and still feeling as if nothing in this world has any meaning for you, then joylessness may be an indication that you are experiencing a spiritual awakening. This is the pain of the awakening heart –  an awakening from a deep slumber a demand from your soul to connect to the Divine – whatever that is for you –  to go on a spiritual, an inner journey rather than an external one. To find out who you really are, to realise the nature of your soul and find inner fulfilment, because anyone who has woken up spiritually finds no meaning or value in the material side of life. Your soul instead calls out for healing, the healing of the past, the clearing out of any baggage, so you can hear the voice of the Divine and your Higher Self in your heart and follow the guidance of your soul, truly going on your soul’s journey. You want to be in the ‘Tao’ – the flow of life, with all its magical synchronicities and gifts and signs from the Divine and the Universe. This is the nature of your soul. You are here to be fulfilled, and to realise your own destiny. When you reach a certain point on your spiritual path and trust me – you ARE on a spiritual journey whether you recognise it or not – nothing else will do. Your heart craves connection and nothing else will sooth it. This is a testing time on the path, but a beautiful one. The good news is – if you have Anhedonia,  I can help you to find joy in life again. Alternatively, if you’ve reached that point on your spiritual journey where you need to go on your inner journey and connect, I can help with that too! No longer will you live in the black and white world, when the colourful picture is waiting for you!

So take action now, click here to make an appointment so you can dance through life again!

Or drop me a text on +44 (0) 7748 361210 and we can go from there.

Blessings, Dawn