What is an Emotional Detox?


Listen to “What is an Emotional Detox?”.

When we think of a detox, we usually think of a physical experience. But it’s not just our physical bodies that need to be cleansed of the impurities we encounter and absorb in our daily lives—it’s our minds too. When we find ourselves unable to process our negative emotions and feel them becoming toxic to ourselves and those around us, it’s time for an emotional detox. 

Why do we need to detox emotionally?

Our minds and bodies constantly process food, drink, thoughts, and emotions. Just as a physical cleanse can help you digest food better, an emotional cleanse can help you digest your emotional experiences.

Similar to how you clear undigested foods and toxins from your body during a detox diet, an emotional detox clears unresolved and negative feelings.

There are many similarities between physical and emotional detoxing. Daily movement, staying hydrated, getting enough sleep, eating clean, and limiting alcohol and caffeine are important steps to physical and emotional detox preparation. 

However, while an emotional cleanse includes many of the same principles as a physical cleanse, there are a few important additional steps. 

Here are some simple tips to start with if you feel you need to emotionally detox:

Define your triggers

An important part of this step is to notice what your triggers are and what makes you reactive. Then, during the purification process, you’ll face and address uncomfortable feelings you’ve kept bottled up to avoid.

An emotional detox pulls up all the repressed feelings of fear, anger, hurt, sadness, and frustration to clear them away, effectively hitting the reset switch on your emotions.

Observe your emotions

Instead of identifying with your emotions and attaching meaning or judgement by saying, “I am an angry person,” Buddhists have a different approach, saying, “I am with anger”. 

Being with your anger will enable you to disassociate from it, see it from another perspective, and ultimately release it. Any toxic thoughts or feelings you are harbouring may rise to the surface and seek expression.

Learn from your emotions

Do not resist your emotions, as whatever you resist persists! Each emotion has a positive intention and message. Emotions want to be heard, felt, addressed and released. 

We feel anger when our values, boundaries and agreements have been violated. However, once we openly communicate these without the expectations of others reading our mind, the emotion goes away.

Sadness can arise when we perceive we have lost something or feel that something is missing. Crying provides a soothing release of stored sorrow and grief. Try DeepH Breathing Meditation for inner peace to release negativity and feel a moment of profound peace.