I no longer practise “cord cutting”, here’s what I do instead.

I no longer practise “cord cutting”, here’s what I do instead. October 31, 2023

Cutting cords is a tried and tested practise within modern shamanism, neo paganism and witchcraft. It’s something I learnt early in my witch journey and really, just continued to do.

But over the past year I’ve been starting to question it.

Originally, much of my magic was very direct. Simple straight lines and shaping and refocusing energy. I still work in this way for much of my practise, but through learning more about psychology and trauma therapy I’ve embraced the softer approach.

Everything with love.

Everything with compassion.

Cord cutting is designed to sever a link.

This is often a link which is causing damage, one that ties us to an abusive person, pattern, or situation. We cut the cords of things which are seeping energy from us and stopping us from moving forwards. Cord cutting is often a last resort, we’ve tried to cut those ties with mundane methods, but something energetically keeps drawing us back.

By severing this connection, we energetically remove the link and that helps us to move forward. It’s an extreme action necessitated by an extreme situation.

We can make this process easier by energetically healing or replanting the end of that thread.

By closing off the end of the cord, we can ensure the energy doesn’t just ooze out. By replanting it, we can regain that energy within ourselves. The flopping, bleeding stump of the cord end is tied off.

But it’s still wounded.

The cut still happened and there is still healing to be done.

And much like a severed limb, which still itches occasionally due to misfiring neurons, the energy pathway is still there, like the empty path of a river waiting for the tides to come back.

I’m not against cord cutting, I still believe it has its place in the right context and situation.

I choose to provide a guided meditation for self cord cutting as part of my Esoteric Resources.

But for me, it has often felt like there’s something missing. When I’ve worked with clients in hypnotherapy to cut cords it often doesn’t feel complete. Other hypnotherapy techniques I’ve been honing which do a similar job give a much deeper feeling of completeness. I know a client has achieved change. With cord cutting, the process feels less definitive.

When I’ve cut cords for myself, I’ve experienced a rawness of emotion and a sense of grief. Whilst these are natural emotions, I choose not to cause myself deliberate grief if there’s another way forward.

Again, everything with love and compassion.

When you cut a cord, you’re lopping it off midway, you aren’t working on the roots.

Like a plant growing in the garden, you’re cutting the stem not pulling the whole plant up and out of the ground. What’s to stop that plant growing back? Following the natural energy flow?

It can simply just grow back. Sometimes just reconnecting that energy. But other times, you don’t find connection with the other person you’re severing from, or with the situation you’re removing yourself from, but through repeating the same pattern with different players. Falling into a new scenario which looks much the same as the old.

We should also remember there’s often another person on the end of that cord.

Most people when they cut cords for themselves, or others do their upmost to make it easier for the other too. They may choose to replant their end back in their energy field, or to heal and soothe their loose end as well as their own.

But whatever we’re doing, we’re doing it without consent.

How do we feel about that?

I don’t wish to put a window into other people’s ethics. I very often describe things we can do and then leave it up to others to follow their own moral compasses. But for my own work, consent is key.

I wish to remove my part of the cord (or my client wishes to remove their part of the cord) but it isn’t up to me to decide how others wish to work this, so unless they’re sitting opposite me playing an active part in the process I choose not to interact with their threads.

My final decision to stop cord cutting came from information from Bob Falconer

who wrote The Others Within Us which is a brave book detailing how we work within IFS therapy with what he calls unattached burdens.

He clearly explains how it’s better to untangle rather than to cut, and to ask the parts of us which are connected to make the choice to let go.

Much of my own work focuses on the premise everything has positive intent.

Every action, every belief, every behaviour however problematic we find it started with a positive intent. By approaching these things with love and curiosity we’re able to understand what the intent is and to explain without blame or judgement how it impacts us. Only then can we release or transform.

Instead of severing the cord, we can look to understand the role this connection has for us, and all our mind can choose to let it go. This is so much easier to work with than simply cutting and expecting the energy to instantly find another course.

We usually don’t have one single cord of connection.

The mind often has many, with all different needs and expectations from that connection. Some come solely from that scenario, but many have deeper roots, they may form part of a pattern so when we sever the link with a current partner, we might also trigger a wound from a previous partner. Or even a wound that cuts deeper than our own lifetime.

Working with one cord is often not enough.

We need to find, understand, and untangle multiple cords.

And when we do so, we work on our own part of the connection. We simply untie and release. Those parts of us no longer need the energy pathway and therefore it dries up.

Instead of Cord Cutting, I do this.

I work on connections, behaviours, and beliefs with metaphor that’s closer to Elf-Shot

Brian Bates describes Elf-Shot as being something fired into us which sits within our energy and causes us problems, particularly with our health.

Limiting beliefs, inherited shame, words spoken that we internalise, and connections to others which are no longer bringing positivity can appear almost as elf-shot. Pockets of energy which doesn’t belong to us but that we hold inside us and feed.

By collecting these together, and holding them outside of ourselves, we can understand, heal, untangle and finally release.

But sometimes this Elf-Shot is part of us. We can’t release it without losing a part of our own energy.

In this instance we work to gather it together and then, just as we do with that which isn’t ours, understand, heal, and untangle it. But instead of releasing it we gather it together outside of our energy and then work with it to transform it. We can then bring it back into ourselves and let it fulfil its new role.

Like most people, my practise is forever changing and developing when I discover new theory and technique I can grow and change, sloughing off practise that no longer suits me and embracing new. Recognising what works for me now isn’t a judgement on past me, nor is it a judgement on how others work. It’s simply a change I’ve made based on new information.

About Katie Gerrard
Author of "Seidr: The Gate is Open" and "Odin’s Gateways", Katie Gerrard is a witch working as a hypnotherapist, yoga teacher and workshop facilitator. You can read more about the author here.

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