We all go through stuff in life, that’s a given. What matters most is not what we went through or for how long but what lessons did we learn and did we heal. Healing these wounds is very important for many reasons. If we don’t let go of pain and hurt, emotional baggage and mental shadows are created. This is one of a few roots of what puts the body into dis-ease and thus creating, you guessed it… disease.
Emotional baggage is created from traumatic events, prolonged suffering within relationships of all kinds, not taking responsibility for past mistakes, judging others, blaming others for one’s own faults etc. Mental shadows are caused by un-healed wounds from the emotional baggage which can dictate how you react and conduct yourself with people, situations and experiences.
In this article, I will teach you how to unpack that baggage and shine light on those shadows. The process I used on myself is the same one I’m about to teach you. I struggled with a lot of things for years until I did these seemingly simple steps and experienced great change in all aspects of my life. Not just that but I felt better. Like I could breathe again and a giant weight was lifted off my shoulders. This like many things will be a process that takes practice hence why I called them “seemingly simple”. I promise you though it works if you are willing to dedicate yourself to it. You will transform like I did where happiness is no longer a destination but a way of travel.
Un-Packing The Baggage
Most if not all suffering is caused by thought. After something bad happens especially with people we care about (or random people who cross our paths), we tend to think about it a lot. Some people will think about the experience long after it has happened. They replay every minute of it in their head like they’re watching it on a projector screen and analyze every detail to see what they could have said or did differently. This usually causes the pain, anger, frustration, anxiety and fear to come to the surface again and for some people, this carries on for years. You can’t help but ask yourself, why do we do this to ourselves? I am guilty of it too. I did it for a long time and I was miserable. Until one day I woke up one morning and decided I no longer wanted to feel the way I did. Upon making this decision, I was shown a new path and how to take the journey. Today, I feel at peace and very content with my life. I owe most of it to the steps I took. So without further adieu… let the healing commence.
Using Forgiveness To Let Go
Over the years, I’ve been used, manipulated and abused. I didn’t believe hell was something you went to when you died; I was living in it. I held a lot of anger and resentment to people who had done me wrong. I didn’t feel the individuals involved deserved forgiveness and maybe rightfully so one could say but there was one thing I did deserve and that was peace. By holding on, they had control of my emotions and thus creating more baggage for me to carry and filling me up with all kinds of dark shadows. Enough was enough. I began over a period of time to forgive every single person that I was resenting or angry at. The best part about forgiveness is you don’t need to directly tell the person you forgive them. I sat in a place where I could be alone and not disturbed and said a simple yet powerful statement out loud:
“I acknowledge what you did and I release it. I forgive you. I’m letting this go. It no longer serves me.”
Mind you, I had to say it a lot for it to stick but let me tell ya, it stuck so don’t get discouraged if it doesn’t right away. You can say whatever you wish to help you as long as the feeling of true forgiveness is there. One thing that also helped me is using water to release things and cleanse the hurt. My favourite way is using a river. I stand or sit (depending on how deep it is) in the river and think of each situation that deeply hurt me as well as the people involved. I took a deep breath, said my statement I wrote above and released it as I exhaled. I used the water flowing beneath my feet to release it and I pictured it flowing down the river.
Now, for most of us it’s pretty cold outside right now and going and standing in a river doesn’t seem plausible. Or some of you may not be able to get to a river. No problem! You can still fully achieve this method in the shower or bath. Use the flow of the shower to have pulled and cleansed from your body. If you prefer baths, do it at the end when you’re ready to get out. Pull the plug, take a deep breath and picture the hurt and pain going down the drain. Do this with all the things that are bothering you at the moment. Stay in the tub until all the water has drained.
One thing I’d like to add that is also of the utmost importance is forgiving ourselves. Don’t forget to include yourself in the forgiveness process. Many people not only resent other people but they also resent and deeply dislike themselves. We must love ourselves which I will be writing a future article on how to do this. Letting go of judgments upon ourselves and letting go of past “mistakes” is key in the forgiveness process. Know that mistakes are just lessons learned and all of us make them. If anyone judges you for them, they might as well judge themselves.
Cleansing The Home After A Healing Session
Not many people know this but we are all healers. Doing that exercise is a healing session believe it or not. When we are doing deep emotional/mental work such as forgiveness, the energy can be released into our home and we need to deal with it promptly so it doesn’t end up in our body(s) again. I highly recommend smudging your home with sage, cedar, sweet grass or whatever your preferred smudging herb is at least once a week, after a healing session or any kind of drama, argument, or disagreement that happens and after having guests over. You can buy sage, cedar and sweet grass from your local metaphysical store. Not sure if one is in your area? Google it by typing ‘Metaphysical Store’ and the area you live in. Also, The Herbal Healing Mama sells a Smudging Spray which you can not only smudge your home but as well as your work, office, car, hotel you’re staying in, a friend’s home, a hospital room or anywhere where you need to cleanse a space. I know it’s not really the norm in our society to whip out a bundle of sage, light it and start smoking up the area which is why the smudging spray is perfect for smudging discretely.
Surround Yourself With Positive, Like Minded People
To keep the “baggage free” times rolling, it’s best to surround yourself with positive people who are like-minded; people who will boost you up and be supportive. You’ll find that once you start healing yourself, you’re going to have a hard time hanging around some of the people in your life especially the negative ones. Gradually weed these people out. Some may find this to be mean but trust me, its necessary. I did it and I began to see that those negative people created emotional baggage and mental shadows for me. They didn’t treat me the way I deserved to be treated but I kept them around partly due to attachment because I had known them for so long and also because to let someone go can be very difficult for both parties involved. When I did this, the friend usually got mad. Yes it was hard, I’m not going to lie or sugar coat it but after, I noticed a big change in my life. I didn’t have drama for one. For two, I didn’t have to worry about who was talking bad about me behind my back or who was going to be there for me if I needed them. I also had more energy. I found that I wasted a lot of energy dealing with these people and worrying about what they were going to do to me next. Also, once I weeded out these people, new people began coming in and these people were not only positive but like-minded and very supportive without even needing to ask. It was a breath of fresh air to say the least.
The People That Help Us “Un-Pack”
Don’t ever be afraid to tell those you love that you have baggage and you may need a bit of help un-packing. Those who are meant to be in your life and who have the best intentions will be there for you in the best way that they can. My partner supported me greatly in his own way and helped me un-pack. All of my friends that didn’t get weeded out helped me un-pack as well and I did for them because the truth is, most of us have baggage. Many are afraid of it and will do everything they can not to face it. The bravest people I know have confronted it dead on and work on it every day. Working on it can be a painful process and it takes time. If you’re in that place, don’t give up and just know that it’s ok to be sad. The sadness, anger, resentment or fear is a cue from our emotional and mental bodies* that we need to work on stuff. I always tell my clients to not be afraid to go the darkness or to feel the sadness. Go there, work on your stuff and get out. Don’t linger there.
Create A Sacred Space
Your home should not only be a safe place but a sacred one. What does it mean to have a sacred space? Some people would define it as holy but for me, my sacred space is a physical embodiment of comfort and safety. Having this sacred space is especially beneficial if you’ve been through trauma. Don’t ever feel obligated to have guests over that make you feel uncomfortable just because another friend or relative wants to bring them; your house, your say!
Keep your house clutter free. To do this, let go of possessions that you don’t really need or serve you in your day-to-day life. I have some things that have huge sentimental value that I’ve held on to but over a year ago, I donated a lot of my stuff and gave some of it away; just random stuff that I didn’t really need that was cluttering up my closet space and my room. When our house is cluttered, it’s easier for energy to fester because it’s harder to smudge. Baggage can also be physical so having a clutter free space will also make you feel more comfortable and it’s less cleaning. Who likes cleaning? Not me! Another thing which is kind of given is to keep your house clean. Try not to let dishes or garbage pile up. I know life can get in the way of cleaning but the best you can do is try. I do little increments of cleaning each day so things don’t get out of control. Being a mom though, I know it’s hard when there’s other people involved. Roommates can be tricky too. Just do the best you can and if you do have other people living with you, keep your room clean and the room you spend the most time in like the living room.
Let Go Of What No Longer Serves You
This is probably the hardest one for many. Letting go takes great will power and involves surrendering your need to control especially controlling outcomes. Many things have outcomes that we can’t control and by doing what if’s or I should, I would, I could will lead you in circles and in a state of holding on. This all comes down to thoughts so be aware of what you are thinking of. Keep your thoughts positive or at least neutral. If you start to think about something that’s bothering you, that’s your cue to create the necessary change and let go of it. One thing that has been on my mind lately is my son and his issues with school. I’m frustrated with many things in regards to that. I have about two options. I know that I need to make a decision and until I make a decision, there’s no point thinking about it and creating frustration and worry.
Many people get stuck from the indecisiveness. Some can’t let go because they can’t make a decision to change. They know there are options and different paths to take but they don’t take any which causes the situation to be put at a stand still. Instead of moving forward which helps us to let go and move on, they just linger with their thoughts of all the actions they could take and each possibility that could arise from each decision and thus holding on to the problem which usually causes them to complain about it because they have all kinds of emotions tangled up. This is a huge contributor to emotional baggage. Make a decision. Don’t worry about making the right one. Do what you feel is right in your heart. Trust your heart, it knows things.