Read also: What is reiki?
A distant reiki session is a good way to get all the benefits of reiki without leaving your home - the energy moves outside time and space, and doesn't actually care much about your location, as long as you are able to stay put (lying or sitting down) throughout the whole session. In Japan, reiki was originally performed lying down on tatami mats, and even now some prefer performing reiki on yoga mats thanks to their easy portability.
Therefore, choose a comfortable and suitable place for yourself where you can lie or sit down for the whole duration of the reiki session, or even slightly longer. However, be careful not to fall off the bed or chair, especially getting up after the session. Different energy movements can cause slight drowsiness or feelings of vertigo, or as if you are "high". Normally it should dissipate by the end of the reiki session.
Make sure to drink at least a glass of clean water before and after the session; for example, at least half an hour before gives you enough time to also visit the bathroom before starting. Reiki energy moving around in your body can be quite intense and dehydration may cause headaches. To prevent it - drink water!
What to expect?
It could be that you sense warmth and energy travelling in the body, following the hand placements and movements of the reiki healer - yes, over the distance also! The level of heat or warmth is individual and, among other things, depends on your own openness. It may also happen that you feel nothing - that is okay too, it doesn't mean reiki is not working. Although, it is possible that, in case you're an overly skeptical person and through your constant doubts have blocked your own energy receiving, the healing energy can bypass you - going instead somewhere it is more needed or openly received. Someone who has practiced reiki for more than 10 years told me that it may even take around 3-5 sessions to simply "break open" a person with strong, only science-based restrictive beliefs. If you want to be sure to receive reiki energy, you can always say out loud (or silently in your mind) with intent that you are open to receive the healing energies sent to you - for example, together with the name of the reiki healer.
Here's what people have said about my distant reiki sessions, should you want to know more about what can be felt during reiki.
Can something go wrong? Can it hurt?
Reiki is the healing force and energy of the universe itself, one that is completely harmless, and technically it is not possible to do anything "wrong". A proper reiki healer doesn't just learn the techniques but also gets a special attunement from their teacher / reiki master that allows them to channel reiki energy safely - by simply activating the universal (very intelligent) healing energy that knows where to go, where it's needed, as opposed to using one's own personal energy. Reiki healer is granted permission (we always ask before a session!) to read the patient's energetic information and thanks to this the energy can be guided or empowered according to need. Therefore, if you trust the universe, you can be sure that reiki energy does not want to harm you.
Reiki does not hurt. Especially distant sessions are completely touch-free. However, should you still feel pain during the session, it could be caused by old traumas coming up. Unresolved trauma is saved in our bodies in muscle tissue, and we may not even be aware of what we're carrying with us every day. Reiki energy can pull some of those very deep traumas to the surface, in order to be accessed and healed - and this process can sometimes cause pain. (If this part speaks to you, I'd strongly recommend watching the following video about pain that seemingly does not have an obvious cause)
Meditative background music helps to relax
Suitable background music creates a relaxing and stress relieving atmosphere already on its own. If you do not have your own special "reiki approved" music then there's plenty on Youtube. Just search for "reiki music" and you'll be spoiled for choice! I personally also use music to set the time frame for the session - knowing that your session, for example, lasts for 30 minutes and the chosen reiki music lasts 2 hours, then just set the "timer" 30-35 minutes from the end. Once the music ends, you know the session is finished also. A little tip, though - make sure the "play next video" option is switched off. The advertisements can be loud enough to raise the dead at the beginning of a new video; luckily, there is usually none in the middle parts of meditative type music, or it would be rather counterproductive. Also, don't forget to put your phone on silent/non vibrating mode - any phone call, notification, or message sound can bring you out of your half-asleep or meditative state.
It is not at all necessary for you to concentrate; rather try to relax, even falling asleep is okay. For example, in Thailand it is said to be very common that the locals fall asleep the moment they lie down to receive reiki. You can let the music carry you away or try to feel what is going on in your body during the session. Pay attention - it could be quite exciting, especially if you've never sensed anything like this before. You may feel different sensations in your body, see colours, images, or flashes of light. Sometimes you can even hear a message that is meant just for you, or a certain understanding will reach you.
About reading information
Reiki can give access to information not only about what is going on in the receiver's body but also mind and heart. This information is meant to be used only in good faith to help or guide the patient towards the right path - please pay heed to what is said to you after the reiki session but also don't get too stuck in it, or make it "fit". Meaning, if you feel that the messages that were passed on to you do not resonate with you or your situation at all, then don't make any huge changes to your life. However, if you know in your heart that the message was directly for you, but you choose not to listen to it because it forces you to make a change that is uncomfortable or inconvenient for you, then it could be that the underlying problem will not disappear before you take that step. You'll know what the right thing for you to do is, inside. And sometimes it may take months, or even years, to completely realize the true meaning of the message. Therefore, don't disregard anything you hear, no matter how cryptic.
Getting "readings" like that is not actually reiki's original purpose but is simply accompanying the healing that is happening in your body. The goal is to guide the reiki energy into your body to do its work, regardless of whether it is felt or not. Again, not feeling a thing doesn't mean reiki is not working :) Just relax, switch off your mind, and enjoy! If you're familiar with meditation then achieving meditative state can definitely help to relax and feel what is going on in your body.
Please keep in mind that reiki does not replace medical treatment! If you've broken a bone, feel pain somewhere, or have serious concerns about your health, then please consult your doctor.