Could past events be impacting your physical and emotional health? We speak to trauma expert and energy healer Dr Bradley Nelson to find out how letting go could improve your wellbeing
A lot of us will be unfortunate enough to experience some sort of traumatic event in our lifetime. Whether it’s emotional or physical abuse, losing someone close to us, divorcing the person we love or developing a life-changing condition, life can sometimes deal us a hand full of upsetting and painful ordeals. But, how can we move on from these events and ensure they don’t have long-lasting effects on our emotional and physical wellbeing?
Dr Bradley Nelson is an energy healer and the author of The Emotion Code (drbradleynelson.com), which looks at the impact trapped emotions and energy can have on our health. In his opinion, intensely powerful reactions can become disruptive to the body and mind.
“The whole premise behind my work is that we experience intense emotions at times in our lives, and the emotions that we experience are really energy. In cases where people are unable to fully process emotions and move on from them, I believe the energy of these can become ‘trapped’ within the physical body. So instead of moving beyond an angry moment, or a temporary bout with grief or deep sadness, you may find yourself struggling with ongoing feelings you are unable to shake. I believe these can then distort the normal energy field of the body, which has physical as well as mental implications.”
Science backs up the idea that stress and trauma can have long-lasting effects on our health. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), for example, is a recognised condition brought about by very stressful or distressing events and can occur immediately after the occasion or even years later. According to the NHS, symptoms include not only emotional problems, such as intense feelings of guilt or irritability, but physical disturbances such as insomnia, too. Research from the University of California in 2015 has also suggested that those with PTSD display shortened telomeres – the caps at the end of our chromosomes which protect them against damage and are considered a good measure of the ageing process of cells. For many, this demonstrates significant evidence that trauma can be ‘stored’ inside our body and can present itself in various ways.
To Dr Nelson, it’s no surprise that research has indicated this. “In my 30+ years as a holistic chiropractic physician I have seen that many conditions we experience as human beings have an emotional component,” he says. “I have come to believe that the symptoms we experience are often simply the body communicating to us that something is wrong and a common denominator for many illnesses is our emotional baggage.”
And, as well as impacting our physical health, Dr Nelson also believes that trapped emotions can negatively influence our potential in life.
“Our trapped emotions handicap us from living the lives that we are actually capable of living,” he explains. “They have the potential to cause you to make wrong assumptions, overreact to innocent remarks, misinterpret behavior, and even damage your relationships. For example, if you have trapped emotions about a previous relationship, those emotional energies will colour your attitude toward future relationships and may interfere with your ability to create the kind of relationship that you really want. If you have trapped emotions due to financial setbacks you’ve experienced, those emotional energies will interfere with your ability to create the kind of financial abundance that you’d like to be able to create in the here and now.”
If this sounds familiar to you, don’t despair. Fortunately, you can take steps to free your body and mind from trapped energy and past trauma. Dr Nelson suggests the below three step process.
Understand the link between your mind and body: For Dr Nelson, the first step is to realise that any symptoms you are experiencing (physical or mental) may be a result of your emotional baggage.
Release emotional baggage: “The next step is to find a simple and easy method of releasing that emotional baggage,” says Dr Nelson. He’s the creator of the Emotion Code process, which sees practitioners use muscle testing alongside a code chart to determine if someone has trapped emotions, pinpoint the exact emotion and location, and then release the trapped energy from that particular event.
But there are other ways to do this, too. Talking therapies such as CBT can be useful in allowing you to discuss your thoughts and feelings and mindful practices such as yoga and meditation can also help release emotional hurts with the right guidance. “Once you begin to release your emotional baggage, you’ll begin to comprehend the widespread effects that that emotional baggage has been having on your life and health,” Dr Nelson says. “The more emotional baggage you release, the better you may feel physically, mentally and emotionally.”
Stop developing new trapped emotions: And it doesn’t stop there. “Once you’ve released the emotional baggage that you have been dragging around all of your life, you will want to know how to prevent yourself from developing new trapped emotions,” Dr Nelson says. “In my opinion, this is made by coming to the realisation that all of the emotions that you experience, you are actually choosing to experience. It has to do with forgiving those in your life who truly need forgiveness, even if that person is you, yourself. It has to do with understanding the emotional process and becoming more emotionally aware and intelligent.”
If you think you’re experiencing mental or physical problems as a result of past trauma, the key thing to do is seek help from a professional. Don’t overlook the importance of your emotional health and try not to bury your head in the sand about how you’re really feeling.
As Dr Nelson says, understanding more about your emotions can help your physical and mental wellbeing improve dramatically.
“People all over the world are discovering how powerfully their emotions have been influencing their life,” he says. “By getting rid of their emotional baggage, people can wake up to a new kind of life, more full of love, more full of health and more full of potential.”
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