A YOGI CHA BLOG
What is an emotional detox and why would we want to do one?
A detox is a process of cleaning, purifying and clearing the passages of life in order for it to flow freely.
When we do a detox for our body, we do it because we notice that energy isn’t flowing as freely as it could.
When it comes to an emotional detox, it’s the same thing. We do it so that we clear the clutter in our mind : emotions and thought process.
When we do a spring clean, we purify our house after the heavy and dark winter that has passed. We open up the windows and we allow for the wind of spring to enter in order to bring a healthier atmosphere into our rooms. We clear the air.
So when we feel heavy emotionally, when it seems as if old wounds and bad habits have taken over our life, we might need to detox our minds.
We could say that it’s a question of seeing ourselves clearly, seeing the brightness of our inner being shine through.
Just as a physical detox can help you digest your food better, so can an emotional detox help you digest your emotions better.
When we have cleansed our physical body, we have helped our immune system to strengthen and viruses or bacteria won’t become an issue. Likewise, when we clear the clutter in our mental and emotional bodies, we can see more clearly situations for what they are. What belongs to me and what belongs to others in a conflict for instance.
Doing this work means that we can deal with situations in a more mature and favourable way. We become resilient.
But the reason we feel heavy and reactionary in our bodies sometimes is because we have not cleared that emotional clutter and we are being driven by past experiences.
If we were like animals, we would shake it off whenever something traumatic happened and then we would already be cleared for new experiences.
However, we don’t just shake it off and so it adds on like a coat, like a scarf of heavy emotions around our necks. It begins to tamper with our perception of the world and ourselves. We victimise and become defensive in any situation that triggers the past emotions laying around.
We do not live in the present moment anymore and we develop addictions to substances, activities and emotional states.
Yes you heard me right. Addictions to emotional states. Especially the negative ones.
So much so that we can wake up in the morning and such a small thing as “waking up on the wrong side” triggers negative emotions.
Sounds familiar at all?
You are not alone.
Because most of the time we have no idea that we need to clear the clutter. We just take it as “this is who I am”.
We identify with it and we also find comfort in the familiarity of it all.
Yet comes the time when it is not serving us anymore and it starts to feel like an ill-fitted shoe or our foot. We don’t feel good.
We feel lost and out of place.
This would be the moment we pull up our sleeves, tie the hair back and put hands on the hips to face the music.
An emotional detox would include the following agreements with yourself :
Decision to commit : be clear with why you want to do this, when you want to begin and how you decide to make this work fit in with the rest of your day.
Make it a ritual : there is a difference between a habit and a ritual. Mainly, we do one out of …habit and the other, mindfully. Be sure to practice anything you want to include in your emotional detox with your full attention.
It’s a daily practice: commit to doing this every day, it’s not when you feel like it. It’s especially the days that you don’t want to.
Create space for it : clear the clutter around your room. Create a space for meditation, journaling, contemplation, physical practice…
Prepare yourself for it : conditioning. Every day when you decide to detox, don’t just roll out of bed onto your meditation cushion. Prepare yourself to set yourself up for success.
Trust the process : start with the first step, you cannot be where you are not yet.
Hi, I’m Charlotte (Yogi Cha). I’m a yoga teacher with a degree in clinical psychology. I’ve always had a deep curiosity toward eastern and western approaches to understanding the mind, and the ming/body union. You’ll find me in the lovely Canggu Bali, nestled amongst coconuts, palm trees and sunshine 🥥🌴🌞
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