What is Emotional Baggage, And How Do We Process it?
Emotional baggage is the emotional distress that is carried from an experience, whether we are conscious of it or not. It is an unprocessed emotion. The emotions and feelings that we experience in the present are often affected by what we have been through in the past, good or bad. When we have a traumatic experience, it can be hard to process and move on. We may cling to it, experimenting with feelings of anger, grudge, or fear, or try to suppress it, and this is the recipe for emotional baggage. For instance, if you have experienced a toxic relationship and carry unsolved emotions, the chances are that they will impact your present relationships, even if you are not aware of it. This can shape your vision, leading you to misconceptions. That's why it is so important to identify what triggers certain emotions, it is a way of discovering the root of the emotion and reaction.
The way people process emotional baggage varies from person to person, but being mindful is always paramount. Some people use coping mechanisms like talking about their feelings with others, whether with someone they trust and love or with a professional, or writing about them to help them heal and find clarity. Putting your emotions on paper and reflecting on them can bring clarity, peace, and compassion. Other people may avoid dealing with emotions at all costs, which can lead to unhealthy relationships, problems at work, and health issues.
5 Ways to Process Your Emotions & Reduce Stress
We all have difficult emotions and hard times in life. The secret is how we deal with them, and how we manage our emotions so that they don't overwhelm, or incapacitate us. Sometimes it can take a lot of willpower to process the tough stuff, or it takes the support of others, lifestyle changes, or therapy. The important message here is that there is always a way. We will now cover five practical ways to deal with unprocessed emotions and soul cleansing practices.
1) Identify the feeling - Identify the root of the unprocessed emotion and feeling and name it. You can think to yourself, "Oh, this is sadness or anger". Recognize that you are not your emotions, for instance, you're not sad, you're feeling sad.
2) Accept the impermanence of things - Sometimes you just need to remember that whatever feelings you are going through, they will pass. Like all things in life, this feeling is impermanent. Life changes and so do our circumstances and feelings. Sometimes a good night's sleep is enough to change the perspective about any challenges life throws. In one day we may see the only problem, and the next day, we may see the answer!
3) Journaling - Journaling is a great way to process your feelings and thoughts about the event. It's also a great way for you to work through what you're feeling and how it has impacted your life. This is helpful if the event was recent and you're still processing what happened. Journaling it's a game-changer activity, it helps gain clarity and it's a great way to vent.
4) Talking with Someone You Trust - If journaling isn't working for you, then talking with someone you trust might be better suited for you right now. Sometimes all we need is to feel heard, before engaging in this type of conversation, make sure your friend, family, or loved one is emotionally available at the time.
5) Seek professional help - If you are having a hard time in the process of your emotions, seek professional help. There are plenty of options for therapy seasons in person or online.
Recognizing Unprocessed Emotions is Important for Our Well-Being
The capacity to recognize and process emotions is important for our mental health, it allows us to understand what is happening and what triggers those emotions. It can also lead to a substantial reduction in stress levels and mental illness. Therefore discovering how to process emotions can lead to a more fulfilling and happier life.
*This article is not a substitute for medical advice or professional treatment.