Emotional pain activates the very same parts of the brain as physical pain; it is just as real, just as troubling and disabling: it HURTS! When you have an injury or you have suffered a devastating blow, such as the loss of a loved one, it is expected that you will hurt. Society also expects you will get over it, and they have little patience when the pain lingers. Worse, we have little patience with ourselves! We tell ourselves our experience should be different, so we fight with our experience. As Eckhart Tolle so eloquently says, “Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”
This is why interventions that work towards releasing rather than struggling against experiences are so much more effective.
This article on emotional pain in Psychology Today is worth reading as a backdrop to what I have to say about how to release it.
The writer, Steven Stosny, points out that dwelling on emotional pain makes it worse.
When we dwell on our pain, we think up so many reasons to hate or blame
the person or persons we see as having caused the pain, and this is an
attachment we are better off without.
Blame may very
well be justified, but as has often been said, “Resentment is like
taking poison and waiting for the other person to die.” When we think
about our pain, and our anger and resentment build up, we experience a
sweetness to the pain that is all about ego. Our victim consciousness
relishes the pain because it elevates our sense of entitlement - entitlement to
love, to care, indolence, handouts, special treatment of some kind. At
this point, it seems, the ones who DO love us end up paying the price
for what someone else did to cause us harm.
we avoid EVER thinking about our emotional pain, shutting it into a box
and trying to carry on as 'normal.' Unfortunately, there are two
common outcomes of this: One is that we numb ourselves to all the delightful emotions,
as well; and the other is that the emotional pain stuffed underground
comes out on the body, eventually, as physical pain or disability.
This is because with either no treatment, or with conventional treatment alone, the pain takes up residence in the body; it is never released. When we fight against it, we ironically reinforce it and we lodge it deep into our cells, our organs, our energy passages - causing blockages that are difficult to shift by conventional means.
Conventional medicine and psychology employ methods of attack or resistance. The arsenal includes antidepressants,
anti-psychotics, anti-anxiety drugs, and pain-killers. These are medications that mask or subdue symptoms but do not heal or release them. (And notice that they are all antagonists: they are anti this or that; they are 'killers;' they are against symptoms rather than for well-being and health.
|These treatments do have their place, for sure. My experience tells me they are a heavy arsenal to use when the only alternative is to continue to suffer without learning anything - or to die. If your doctor says you need them, you should take them! And, at the same time learn some energetic techniques so that one day you can stop them, or require lower doses with your doctor's guidance.
Conventional psychology also has its answers. The best-researched and well-supported psychological treatment is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT),
and this has its place, also. In my experience, however, emotional
pain dealt with via CBT goes dormant; you learn through CBT to act as
though you are not in pain. It totally can get you back in the world
functioning again, but you remain vulnerable; next time you have a
disappointment, the whole emotional cycle can well back up and stop you
in your tracks. I believe that this is because in most CBT, you learn to struggle against your issues more effectively, but you do not release them, and they continue to define you.
Appropriate self-care (rather than self-indulgence), including healthy eating, exercise, yoga, meditation, tai chi, qi gong - all these are methods you can do for yourself that allow release.
Energy Medicine has countless self-care practices, and a trained practitioner can detect where the pain is located in the body, targeting it precisely where it lives, in a chakra or meridian or other system. We can then help it exit permanently.
One more reminder: The services I offer do not replace care by a qualified physician or therapist! These are self-care techniques and sessions that can enhance the work you are doing with your primary care giver. I do NOT diagnose or treat disease or psychological conditions. What I do is to help you balance energies.