Emotional Spring Cleaning


Sandella_Deborah_PC_DougEllis2014 (1)6 Ways to Clear Your Inner Spaces for Lighthearted Living

By Deborah Sandella PhD, RN

It’s springtime!  Time to freshen those closets and drawers.  But, how about the nooks and crannies in your emotional heart?  Most of us have unwanted feelings tucked away somewhere.  Yet, they hang around like dust balls under the bed.  Out of sight, and drifting into view at exactly the wrong moment.  Your mind thinks that cleaning your home is easy because you literally see dirt, but when it comes to invisible and illusive feelings, not so much—or is it? 

Over the last twenty years, I’ve made a revolutionary discovery.  I’ve discovered that we have an organic emotional system that is designed for adaptability and recovery similar to our physical bodies.  And the good news is that it’s more resourceful than our minds can conceive.  Here are 6 ways you can activate your organic emotional system to spiffy up your mood for a lighthearted summer! 

  1. Let Your Feelings to Flow—You don’t store the dirty water you use to clean your house, do you?  Similar to a bucket of mop water, feelings whether painful or pleasurable, are not designed to stay.  Rather they are transient states passing through you—bringing information, release and then flowing on down your emotional river.  They have their own momentum to move downstream as long as you don’t stop them.  When you ignore, hide, bury, and suppress organic feelings, and all feelings are organic, you build a dam that keeps those feelings around.  As soon as you create an opening in your emotional dams, feelings easily flow into expiration.  Right now create an opening for your feelings to flow by sitting down and putting your pen to paper or fingers to keyboard and freely express your uncensored and unedited feelings onto paper for no other reason than pouring them from your body onto the page.  
  2. See Your Feelings —The left-brain thinker has little patience for anything emotional because feelings aren’t logical.  Anyone who has ever tried to talk themselves out of their anger, grief or sadness knows it doesn’t really work for long.  However, when we ask imagination to give form to feelings, we have whole brain genius! With closed eyes, focus on your body. What do you notice?  Focus on this area as your imagination easily gives it size, shape and color.  Sensing (right-brain) the details of this energy, notice which part of it is calling your attention the most and imagine moving your attention into it as fully as you can. Rest here and notice how your feelings automatically change.  It may get more intense at first, yet as you patiently imagine sitting in it, the image begins to dissipate until gone. 
  3. Turn on Your Emotional Self-Cleaning Oven—Your native emotional system works a bit like an emotional self-cleaning oven.  And just like the one in your kitchen, you have to turn it on!  Move your awareness into your heart where one word of how you’re feeling pops into awareness.  Sense this feeling and embrace it as best as you can… repeat this activity at least two more times or until you feel clear.  
  4. Invite a Mindful Awareness of Virtual Support—You were born with everything you need to be happy.  When you feel your own wholeness from the inside out, you know you are more than your body or humanity.  With your eyes closed, ask your imagination to bring the image of someone safe, loving and powerful and receive whoever shows up.  Just like looking out of the loving eyes of a parent at their newborn babe, you look out of this person’s caring eyes at yourself; you sense their appreciative view of your wholeness.
  5. Attract What You Want By Dissolving Resistance to What You Don’t Want—Attract what you want by dissolving resistance to what you don’t like.  Intensely resisted experience is magnetic.  No matter how much we try to control what we don’t want, we can’t.  In fact, the more we resist the greater the magnetic power to attract more of the same; it’s nothing personal, just emotional physics. What we feel is what we get regardless of what we think.  So, intentionally allow yourself to feel whatever emotion or thought you’ve been resisting. Feel it as intensely as you can—it organically dissipates, which creates space for manifesting what you do want! 
  6. Apply Emotional Soap to Wash Unhappy Feelings—In the same way soap helps ugly stains wash down the drain easily, self-compassion and self-love lathers up to disintegrate emotional stains, so they wash away naturally.  Right now, imagine being compassion with yourself for an ugly feeling you’ve had recently.  With eyes closed, imagine the vulnerable you who needed this emotion to feel safe and send her/him understanding and love.  Notice how it feels to understand without judging yourself. 

You were born with these organic emotional recovery abilities.You just haven’t believed it possible or understood how to use them—Until Now!As you use these six ways to freshen your inner spaces, you create a lighthearted way of being like no other! Enjoy! 

Dr. Deborah Sandella is the author of the forthcoming book, Goodbye, Hurt & Pain: 7 Simple Steps to Health, Love and Success. She is an award-winning psychotherapist, university professor, and the originator of the groundbreaking RIM Method, which is a heavily-backed neuroscience tool for reducing stress and improving the quality of life.