Instead of waiting for time to heal my emotional hurts. I helped the process along by using many different types of emotional healing tools.
I did not want to have to make the same mistakes again because I could not learn the first time. So instead I opted to figure out why things were happening and how to correct for the future.
This lead me to develop a deep list of emotional healing tools that I can use. I have many because every situation calls for a different tool.
For example, sometimes when stressed for no reason I use tapping to try and uncover why I am stressed. Other times it may be that I need to mediate to calm down. Having many tools allows you to deal with each situation with the right tool.
How do you know what tools to use? How do you go about creating your own tool kit?
Let's first take a look at how to find the right tools for you to use in your journey. Below are the ways that I have found everything that I use. Then I will share some of the tools that I use, to give you a head start on finding the right tools for yourself.
I am going to break down these healing tools into two categories. One focused on the physical body and the other on the mental, emotional and spiritual bodies. Healing all four bodies during a life transition is key to being able to come out emotionally healthy.
Your physical health is important to healing. Without your health it makes it 100 times harder to heal your emotions. There are two reasons for this.
First it is hard to do the necessary work if you are in pain and dealing with medical issues. You need stamina and energy to do healing work.
Second, our bodies hold onto emotions that are not processed. You will speed up your emotional healing by working on your physical body.
This goes beyond a healthy diet and exercise. While those are important, you also need to engage in some form of bodywork that will release the stuck emotions.
Bodywork is a way of working with the body that works the muscle, energy, posture, etc. so that the body can heal.
If you want more of the science behind the stuck emotions I recommend the following book. Molecules of Emotion: The Science Behind Mind-Body Medicine.
Following are the four types of bodywork that I prefer. Keep in mind they are not the only ones available.
Who knew that relaxing with a massage could help you not only heal your body but release emotions. Your emotions can end up living in your tissues.
When getting a massage, you loosen the muscles and release the emotion. I have even heard of people having a massage therapist with them at counseling to get double the benefit!
If you have never experienced massage before, I suggest that you ask for referrals. The more you can ensure a good experience the more likely you are to have luck releasing. And more importantly that you will want to go back!
I have gotten regular massages for about 18 years now. I can say without a doubt you get what you pay for. Paying for the more experienced and trained individual allows you to go less and receive the same benefits.
My current massage therapist takes many advanced trainings and is hands down the best one I have been to. And she is also the most expensive – but worth every dime. (If you are in the DFW area check her out.)
Fascia runs through the entire body. When you experience emotions that are not fully processed your body absorbs them.
Fascia is one of the places that can take the emotions. Causing even more pain than the typical physical use of Fascia.
Our bodies release neuropeptides when we experience emotions, they go through the entire body and attach to any receptor that is available. Including the fascia.Myofascial release is a technique used to release both the physical tension and the emotions.
This technique is based on muscle testing to find spots that you may be holding emotional pain. Then it is release through acupressure points.
I was unsure how this could work when I first learned about it but was very intrigued. Luckily my chiropractor is trained in it. While not the most powerful thing I have experienced. It did make a big impact on the consistency of my emotional healing. It helped me find balance.
For more information: Neuro Emotional Technique.
As westerners most of us look at yoga as something we do for physical fitness.
Yet, yoga was designed for spiritual growth. The asana’s are meant to help release emotions, and prepare ourselves for meditation and enlightenment.
It is very common to have an emotional reaction in yoga. I remember the first time that I cried in yoga. It was out of now where in a restorative yoga class. Oddly it was not even on an issue that I had been dealing with that day. But evidently the hip opener we were doing brought to the forefront some emotions.
Luckily, I had already known there could be a connection, so I allowed myself to sink into the feelings. A few hours later I was ready to release those emotions.
If you have never tried yoga before I recommend you start at a local studio. The positions can be tweaked ever so slightly to get them just right. An online class or an untrained teacher can block your experience. Once you have the basics down, the by all means head to YouTube!
I have lumped all the tools for these four mental bodies together, because many of them will help on multiple bodies. Following are my eight favorites. These are not the only options!
This is hands down one of the most critical tools that I use for processing and releasing emotions.
Tapping utilizes acupressure points to calm the nervous system and re-write old beliefs.
I would journal about my emotions, and then run through a tapping sequence based on my journaling. Not only did this release those emotions but it would typically uncover new emotions that I did not know I had.
Be prepared to cry, laugh and release!
While not difficult, it can take time to get used to and learn the process. I recommend you check out The Tapping Solution. This was the main site that I used to learn.
While it can be beneficial to work with someone who is trained it is not completely necessary. Especially if you know what you want to tap on and are good at understanding your feelings.
While meditation has been shown to have many amazing benefits, it has been the hardest one for me to master! My mind or my body does not like to slow down.
What has worked for me is guided meditations. These are especially great when you need to heal an emotion. (Before guided meditations I did movement meditations. Learn more about movement meditation here.)
I use an app called Insight Timer. It has not only a timer for “traditional” meditation, but also thousands of free guided meditations. Including over 1,000 on emotional healing. Plus, as a bonus you can earn stars for having a regular practice.
A couple of my favorite guided meditations in the Insight App:
Hands down the best thing I do every day! I use my journal as a place to understand my feelings, discover why I do things, release old beliefs and so much more.
For me it is like having a counselor with me at all times.
While journaling can take time to get used to, it is worth the effort to learn. Start out with 10 minutes a day of free writing about your emotions and what you are feeling. Do not judge yourself. This is your space to explore without any fear.
As you discover new feelings and blocks, use that information to either tap, do mirror work or speak to friends and your therapist.
Don’t give up on this without trying for at least a couple weeks!
For more on how to Journal, check out my article on the basics of getting started jouranling.
I am sure you have heard this before. It hurts you to not forgive. It is not about them, it is about you.
Yet I am more than aware that this is also one of the hardest things you can ever do!
I read article after article on forgiveness. I journaled about it. I tapped on it. I did guided meditations on it. I have used everything in this article to work on forgiveness as part of my emotional healing.
Then finally I found the book that changed everything! Radical Forgiveness by Colin Tipping. Not only did this make more sense than anything else I had read. But Tipping has practice exercises and worksheets you can use to forgive.
Do yourself a favor, get the book, read it and do the worksheets. I keep a printed set of them by my journal spot, so I can work on forgiveness anytime I am feeling overwhelmed.
Forgiveness really is the path to emotional healing. If you do nothing else, work on forgiveness.
If you are not familiar with Mirror Work it is when you talk to yourself in the mirror. This may feel crazy, but it has an amazing power. The premise is that you learn to love yourself by directly looking in your own eyes and declaring your love.
To heal emotionally and move on you have to love yourself enough to actually do that. If you don’t love yourself, you will find ways to not allow yourself to heal. You will find a way to continue the suffering.
I think this is one of the fastest ways to get to the core of a problem. I have been amazed how five minutes in front of a mirror can reveal the real issue (and usually some tears with it!) And this has occurred after years of dedicated work on healing!
I recommend getting the book, so you can reference back to the affirmations, journal questions and meditations.
Really any type of breathing practice is beneficial, but I love the way this one forces you to stay present.
It is an ancient form of breathing that has you utilize two in breaths and one exhale. You do this for a minimum of seven minutes. It is hard to describe how it feels, but it is similar to having a great meditation experience.
I have had more ahas and serene moments with Harmonic Breathing than with meditation.
You cannot go it alone. You need your friends to help you process and heal. Without my friends I would have been lost through my major transitions.
Just being able to cry with someone, so you don’t feel alone is important. Loneliness can block your emotional healing.
Make sure you cultivate relationships where you are both interested in learning, growing and becoming better people. Do this before you need them and let yourself rely on them when you need them.
Find a good therapist and don’t lose them! They can help you through the dark days probably better than anyone else. That is what they are trained to do!
They can help you see things in a different light. They won’t judge. Their advice is unbiased with only you as the focus.
Without my two favorite therapists, I would have struggle through many of my transitions.
Counseling is NOT for the weak. It is for the strong. It is for those that want to grow. It is for anyone who wants to continually get better and not make the same mistakes in life.
If you are serious about healing, you need a good therapist.
If you need help finding a good therapist, ask for referrals or search on the Psychology Today website.
As you work on healing keep these things in mind. It can be a hard road and I don’t want you to give up. Life really is better when you heal your emotions.
While emotional healing is not easy, it is always worth it. Do the work and you will forever be a better person.
Andrea Travillian is an emotional healing coach. She helps clients break free of making the same mistakes over again. She has her MBA and undergraduate in finance and her coaching certificate. She is an author, speaker, and most importantly mom.