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What are emotional blocks? (and how to clear them)

The body has an innate drive to heal. In any health imbalance, if healing isn’t happening, or is happening slowly, there may be different types of “blocks” inhibiting the process.

Examples of physical blocks: lack of nutrients; dehydration; toxins and pathogens like mold and parasites

Examples of emotional blocks: held anger, humiliation, abandonment or fear from past traumas

Examples of spiritual blocks: lack of faith or belief in the healing process

What are emotions?

“As you live through the days and years of your life, you are continually experiencing emotions of one sort or another. These feelings you have all serve a purpose…”

“Negative emotions also can be useful, even if they are at times uncomfortable or painful.”

“…simply put, emotions are vibrations of pure energy. Every emotion has its own unique vibrational frequency.”

“…we are affected by the energy of our emotions simply because our bodies are also made of energy. This simple fact is the reason our emotions can affect us so profoundly on a mental, emotional, and physical level.”

- Dr. Bradley Nelson, The Emotion Code

The purpose of emotions

Emotions serve as motivation, provide us with direction, allow us to process our experiences and help us to survive.

How and why emotional blocks occur

Most often, our body generates emotions in response to our experience, it serves its purpose, and we move on.

However, if that process is interrupted, the energy of the emotion can become “trapped” in the body, in other words forming an emotional block. Instead of moving through an emotional experience, that negative energy stays in the body, which can create both physical and emotional stress and discomfort.

This interruption can happen for many reasons, including but not limited to:

  • Feeling overwhelmed by the emotion, feeling that it was too intense to fully process at the time

  • Having an emotional experience that exceeds our capacity to handle it, for example when we’re very young

  • Not feeling safe to fully experience or express the emotion; suppressing the emotion

  • Feeling physically sick or weak at the time

Outside sources of emotional blocks

It’s important to know that trapped emotions aren’t always necessary generated by you. In addition to emotional blocks that form from your own difficult or overwhelming experiences, emotional blocks can come from other sources — I find this concept helpful when someone’s emotional experience or tendencies don’t seem to match their lived experience:

  • Absorbed from the people around you — especially if you are highly empathic

  • Inherited from parents and ancestors

  • Organ imbalances (e.g., a physically imbalanced liver is thought to create a propensity toward anger; lung issues are associated with grief; issues in the kidneys, bladder and urinary tract are associated with fear)

Impact of emotional blocks

Negative emotional energy can “lodge” anywhere in the body and contribute to physical symptoms, in addition to emotional symptoms like anxiety, overthinking and depression. Anyone who does work in this area can attest to the bi-directional nature of physical and emotional imbalances.

“Trapped emotions lower immune function and make the body more vulnerable to disease. They can distort body tissues, block the flow of energy, and prevent the normal function of organs and glands.”

- Dr. Bradley Nelson, The Emotion Code

During the span of a single Emotion & Body Code session, I’ve seen the following significantly improve:

  • Headaches

  • Neck pain

  • Joint pain

  • Muscle tension and tightness

  • Hand and leg tremors

Tools I use in my practice to clear emotional blocks

Emotion & Body Code energy clearing technique

EFT “Tapping”


Flower essences

Herbal remedies

Other amazing modalities: psychotherapy, reiki, craniosacral therapy, meditation, acupuncture — there are a LOT of options out there, and everyone will resonate with different ones, often in combination

The big picture

Emotions are often just one piece of the puzzle in supporting the body’s natural healing process, and clearing emotional blocks is not a cure-all. Nutrition, hydration, reducing the body’s toxin load and enhancing its ability to clear toxins, rest, movement, joy, self evolution — all of it matters.

*All information shared in this post is intended for educational purposes only and does not serve as medical advice

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