How to Remove Stored Emotions in the Body + Lose Emotional Weight

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When it comes to our bodies, we all have a physical body and an energetic body. When it comes to losing weight, it’s often much deeper than just the physical. Have you ever heard someone say, “I’ve tried everything, but I just can’t lose this weight?” It’s likely they had energetic weight to lose. We can lose energetic or emotional weight through processing our feelings. Here’s how to remove stored emotions in the body and lose emotional weight. 

As a reminder: I am not a doctor, nor do I claim to be! Any claims in this article are based on my personal experience and research. Please read my full medical disclaimer before engaging with my content, suggestions or anecdotes. Also, as a reminder, this post may contain affiliate links to certain products and I may earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you!) if you make a purchase based off of my wonderful suggestions. 

Tending to our physical bodies is something that’s mainstream. Diets, workouts, saunas, dry brushing, quality of sleep… the list of ways to tend to our physical bodies is endless. But when it comes to tending to our energetic body it’s taboo. We have a picture painted of the type of person who tends to their energetic body and, often, we mock that picture. I’ve spoken before about how the “idea of a spiritual person” often turns the average person off to spirituality. But spirituality isn’t a persona, despite that some have created personas around spirituality.

Tending to our energetic body doesn’t have to look like some performative act we’ve seen on social media. It doesn’t require you to use buzz words like, “vibration” or “ascension”. It just requires you to honor what you feel by allowing yourself to feel it.

What Emotional “Things” Can Get Stuck in the Body?

For many of us, me included, a lot of the emotions stuck in the body are the harder ones to feel. I prefer not to label them, “good” or “bad” but societally they’re looked at as the more “negative” emotions. Sadness, despair, shame, embarrassment, regret, guilt, disappointment, loneliness, remorse, anguish, or grief – to name a few. As these emotions are harder to feel – we typically deny ourselves feeling them in their fullness. When we deny ourselves the act of feeling them, they will lodge themselves into our body.

However, we also can have the “positive” emotions stuck in our body, as well. Societally, we believe that if we’re in the middle of feeling one ‘type’ of emotion – that we can’t allow ourselves to feel the opposite emotion. So, if/when the opposite emotion comes up – we suppress it. Even if it’s a “good” emotion. Joy, peace, love, gratitude, excitement, bliss, serenity, delight, contentment, elation, or happiness – to name a few.

To give an example of this: I ask you to imagine being in the depths of feeling sadness, grief, and despair in the process of mourning the loss of a loved one. Because we’re so engulfed in those “negative” emotions – if a “positive” emotion came up (such as joy or excitement) we would often suppress it. Pushing it away. Because we have a common belief that if we’re with our sadness and grief – we can’t simultaneously touch joy or excitement. When we deny ourselves the act of feeling those feelings, they can lodge themselves in our body.

Other “things” that might get stuck in the body are:
•old habits/behaviors
•patterns that you’re breaking
•people you’ve moved on from
•stories you’ve been telling yourself
•pieces of you that no longer serve you
•outdated ways of living
•expired beliefs/belief systems

How Do We Remove Stored Emotions from the Body?

It’s actually quite simple. And I know you’ve heard this before. It’s a cliché because it’s true:

You Have to Feel it To Heal it.

There is no cheat code to this! There’s no “workaround”. You simply need to allow yourself to feel the feelings you’ve denied yourself of feeling.

How Do Emotional “Things” Manifest in the Body?

There are endless ways that emotional “things” can manifest in the body. While each person, each body, is different… there are some common themes when it comes to emotions in the body. Some of the most common manifestations of emotional issues in the physical body are:

Muscle Tension/Pain

Emotional stress, anxiety, or other buildup of emotions can lead to muscle tension or stiffness.


Intense emotions such as stress, anger, or anxiety can trigger tension headaches. When left unchecked, they can go on to develop into chronic headaches or even migraines.

Digestive Problems

Our gut-brain connection is so potent that it’s no surprise many of us suffer from digestive issues. Our unchecked emotional distress impacts the digestive system manifesting as stomachaches, bloating, nausea, diarrhea, constipation and more.


Mental strain and emotional stress drains us of our life force, our energy. Exhaustion and chronic fatigue are a warning sign from our physical body that something is off in our emotional body.

Sleep Disturbances

Any suppressed emotional issues can disrupt our sleeping patterns. Insomnia is a common manifestation of emotional issues in the physical body but difficulties falling asleep, staying asleep or experiencing a restful sleep can also occur.

Weakened Immune System

Staying in a state of emotional distress can weaken our immune system which makes us more susceptible to illness and infection and can also slow down the recovery time for existing health issues.

Changes in Appetite

Emotional issues can affect our appetites and eating habits. For some, this will manifest as a loss of appetite but for others it can manifest as an increase in appetite.

Skin Issues

Stress or emotional turmoil can also manifest as skin issues such as acne, eczema, psoriasis or hives. 

Increased Heart Rate/Blood Pressure

Intense emotions such as anger or anxiety can trigger a physical response in the body such as an increased heart rate or elevated blood pressure.

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My Experience with Emotional Debris in my Physical Body

The more that I do the work to tend to both my emotional and physical bodies… the more that I’m able to identify when my physical body is reacting to something awry in my emotional life. Many of the symptoms that we have regarded as, “normal” in society are alarms from our body that are signaling to us that something is wrong. Sometimes the signal is alarming us that there is something off in our physical body (i.e, illness or allergy). Sometimes the signal is alarming us that there is something off in our energetic body (i.e, not speaking our truth, ignoring our intuition).

The best way for me to explain how these sorts of emotions can manifest in the body is to show you. 


When I moved to Italy for a business deal that was going awry – I was in denial. I had wanted to live in Italy for over a decade and I didn’t want to admit that this deal was non bene (not good).  The first signal my body sent me was my intuitive nudge. I knew, deep down, that I had to end this deal. But I didn’t want to accept that. I didn’t want to admit defeat. I ignored the intuitive nudge. 

The second signal was feeling drained of energy. I was SO TIRED. I was sleeping 12, 13 or even 14 hours STRAIGHT and still had trouble getting up. Multiple espressos throughout the day did nothing. My body was signaling to me, through exhaustion, that this wasn’t a good deal for me. Something that is for me should be energizing and exciting not draining and exhausting! 

Still, I ignored it. 

I didn’t want to admit I made this massive mistake of moving my entire life to a different continent, for nothing. 

And then I broke out in hives. I ignored the first signal my body sent me, the intuitive nudge. I ignored the second signal my body sent me, the exhaustion. I could not ignore this one. I had to move forward with backing out of the deal and giving up this version of my dream to live in Italy. 


I don’t say this to brag but I’ve never struggled with acne. Only in the last decade or so, since deliberately working to detox both emotional and physical debris in my body, did I experience any form of pimples.

In early 2022 I was moving through old patterns in romantic relationships. I pieced together a false story that I had been telling myself for years. I noticed the pattern within my previous partners. I identified where it came from. And then I felt into it. 

I let myself feel the fullness of the uncomfortable feelings of inadequacy, rejection, and a deep lack of self-love. I cried, so much! I spent about two full days in the depths of those feelings.. in the pattern that had rooted itself within me for nearly two decades. 

On the third day I woke up to not one, not two but FIVE pimples on my chin. The chin is theorized to be tied to the pelvic region. The patterns I had moved through, emotionally, were stored, physically, in my womb – in my pelvic region. My physical body releasing that emotional debris manifested as a bunch of acne on my chin.

More recently, I had to stick up for myself through using my voice. Honestly, I didn’t want to. I wanted to just let it go. But I knew I needed to break that pattern. I couldn’t ignore the intuitive nudge anymore. I spoke my truth to not one, but two different people in the same day. It was difficult. I was even shamed and ridiculed for what I had to say. Instead of allowing the reactions of others shake me – I stood in my truth. 

Before going to bed I felt I needed to do some energy work on my throat. I had expressed myself in a way that I never had before. And I also stayed in my heart while doing so. I felt SO TENSE AND TIGHT in my throat that before bed I knew I needed to do some deep neck stretching. The stretching HURT. I could feel where the pattern was still physically within me and in stretching it out – I released it. 

The next morning, I woke up to two pimples right on my throat. 


The throat has been a big thing for me to move through. Using (or not using) my voice has been something I’ve been working on for a while. I had conditioned myself to hold things in. To not speak up. I was afraid of hurting others, even if it meant I was hurting myself to “protect” them. 

I mentioned above that I recently leaned into my voice to stick up for myself. Choosing to do so hasn’t always been easy. I also mentioned that I had conditioned myself to hold things in. I came to a point in my journey about two years ago where holding it in was no longer feasible. 

I ignored the first signal. I ignored the intuitive nudge that was telling me to speak up because the thought of doing so was so uncomfortable. So my body sent me a second signal that was even more uncomfortable. A giant, red, hot, itchy, painful rash across my throat. 

Other Emotional Debris I’ve Experienced in the Body

The above examples give great visual aid to the concepts of energetic/emotional issues manifesting or purging out of the body. There can also be “things” stuck in the body that aren’t visual. These “things” don’t manifest as a physical ailment such as hives, acne or a rash and aren’t as “obvious” as a physically manifested ailment.

Aches + Pains 

Have you ever had an ache or pain in your body that you knew wasn’t tied to a physical injury? It could possibly be tied to an emotional issue. One of my “problem areas” is my shoulders. I’m the first born daughter, first born female cousin.. and a Capricorn. To say I have the weight of the world on my shoulders would be an understatement. 

I’m an empath and I feel, deeply, my own feelings and the feelings of others. My shoulders are tight with energetic weight. The weight of my own problems but also the problems of my loved ones. I often take on their pain because I don’t want to see them burdened with it. Unfortunately, saving everyone from their pain isn’t sustainable. Especially when it only adds to my own. 

Some of the emotional debris in my shoulders isn’t even mine! However, I consented to holding it – so it became mine. 


Going back to the beginning of this article, I ask you again, have you ever heard someone say, “I’ve tried everything, but I just can’t lose this weight?” It’s likely they had energetic weight to lose. 

Have you ever had a really good cry that nearly IMMEDIATELY made you feel better? Lighter? That’s because in releasing those tears, in feeling those feelings – you removed some of the emotional debris that was stored in your body. 

Going back to my issues with the throat – after expressing myself.. I felt relieved because I removed some of the emotional debris that was stored in my body.

When an emotion goes unfelt for years.. it starts to pile up. And that’s where weight gain can come from. I mentioned above that I had to do some deep emotional work surrounding my romantic relationships, my womb. Within a few days of doing that work, expelling those emotions, I lost seven pounds of physical weight. 

For about a year before coming to that realization and moving through those traumas and emotional wounds – I had been experiencing so much bloat. There was no physical explanation for the bloating I was experiencing. That bloating was emotional weight waiting to be released through the processing of the emotions. Not only did I lose seven pounds of physical weight but the bloating subsided, substantially.

How To Remove Emotional Debris + Weight in the Body

I think it’s very important to note that most feelings/emotions only take about 90 seconds to be fully felt before passing. That’s not a typo. Most of us spend years in toxic loops just to avoid 90 seconds of an uncomfortable feeling! Hold onto the 90 second ideology if it gets too uncomfortable. 

The first step in losing emotional weight is to feel the feelings. Remember: you have to feel it to heal it. When an uncomfortable or difficult emotion comes up – don’t push it away. Move through the following steps with your emotions:

Identify Your Emotion

Is it sadness? Hopelessness? Anger? Despair? 

Use the below chart to really hone in and identify the emotion

Don’t Judge the Emotion

I mentioned earlier that I don’t like to label emotions as “good” or “bad” because I believe it creates judgements. When we read the above wheel we often perceive half of the wheel as “positive” and half of the wheel as “negative”.

While considering some of them, “positive” – it is still a judgement. Try your very best not to judge the emotion you’re feeling.

Remain Present with the Emotion

Remaining present with the emotion is necessary if you want to move through it. 

Let Whatever Comes, Come

Remaining present with the emotion may bring up other manifestations of emotions such as tears and crying, a stuffy nose, an urge to move your body (such as rocking or swaying). 

Allow whatever comes to come!

I am someone who processes her emotions through tears. So, very often, in this process: I find myself crying. It may look different for you! Honor what you feel!

Find The Emotion in Your Body

Is it in your hips? Is it in your shoulders? Is it in your chest? Is it in your knee? 

Close your eyes, breathe deeply, and begin to scan your body from head to toe to try to identify where in the body it is held. There is no right or wrong answer! Trust your intuitive nudges and where your body is guiding you to feel the emotion.

Breathe into and Focus Where you Feel the Emotion

This is a foreign concept to some but once you begin practicing – it gets much easier! 

To practice this, I invite you to close your eyes and focus on your belly button. Breathe deeply with the intention to send your breath, and your awareness, to the belly button. 

Invite Curiosity to the Emotion

Once you’ve identified the emotion and located it in your body you can assess the emotion deeper. Remember, whatever you feel intuitively is what it is! There is no right or wrong! Release your judgements! This is healing – it doesn’t have to “make sense” logically. 

Ask yourself: what does the emotion look like? Does it have a color? Does it have a shape? Does it have a size? Is it an object? What does it feel like? Is it hot or cold? Is it moving or stagnant?

To give a personal example: one time I was removing emotional debris out and I identified it as a fear and I located it in my belly. When I got curious about it I noticed that it resembled thick, rusty, old chains that were covered in slimy algae. Does it make logical sense? No. Is it still with me? NO! Do I feel better after having identified it? YES!

Remain Present with the Emotion

Yes, we’re repeating steps. Remaining present with the emotion is necessary if you want to move through it. 

Notice the Emotion

After you’ve identified the emotion, found it in your body, breathed into it and became curious about it, all while remaining present with it, notice it again. 

Has it started to change? Has it shifted from one emotion to the other. One common shift is from “anger” to “sadness”.

It’s okay if it hasn’t changed! Continue to ask yourself: has it moved? Has it shifted in shape, color, size, object, etc? Is it still as strong as it once was? 

Follow Your Intuition

While I’ve created this list of “steps” to feel your emotions – you may find that the process looks different for you. Some of what I’ve suggested might not work for you. Alternatively, you may feel called to a different process. HONOR THAT. 

Only you know what’s truly right for you. I am just aiming to help others to feel comfortable in their discomfort by sharing what has worked for me. Consider this a very loose guide. It’s not school. You don’t need to follow my instructions to arrive at your answers!

At the end of the day: the way that emotions manifest and store in the body will look different for everyone. The number one thing we can bring to the table when hoping to move through these stuck and stagnant emotions is awareness. Do you have any experience with emotions stored in your body?

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