On a recent night, I had a wonderful experience of allowing a few old bad memories to slip away.
I had been going through some old photo albums earlier in the evening and later when I lay down to sleep I had some old bad memories flood my brain.
I started to have a panic attack from the old forgotten feelings, things that had happened so long ago that I had forgotten them. Something like this hadn’t happened to me for a very long time so it took me by surprise.
In the middle of feeling overwhelmed, I remembered something that I had learned from Louise Hay, which was to thank the memories and then say “I no longer need you, you may leave .”
I was surprised to feel all that ugliness and old pain I had forgotten, just form a grey smoke in my mind, and just slip away, as though someone had opened a window and fresh air blew away the old toxins.
I have to honestly say that this was the first time on my healing journey that I was able to consciously move so quickly through, from a panic attack to complete peace. It used to take me much longer to work it through.
I watched a video once of Louise doing exactly that process during an interview and a long-dormant memory resurfaced for her. I remember thinking that I would like to get to such a point that I could move as quickly and as gracefully through it as she did.
After she finished, she reassured the viewers that even after decades of healing work old dormant memories can come up, that it is normal and not a reflection of a lack of healing or insufficient efforts to heal.
I think her words gave me courage. If such a well-known person as herself, so acclaimed for her healing work was still needing to sometimes work through old stuff, that there was no shame in taking a long time to heal.
Having shame removed from the healing process is important, for it was an old shame we were made to feel that had us stuffing our pain deep down, out of sight, so that no one would think that we were ” damaged “.
Stuffing down old pains and memories only deepened our pain, it didn’t dull it.
So now when things come up, please don’t try to shove them back down! Let it waft upwards and out!
Yes, you may feel panicked. You may feel a panic attack, but keep telling yourself that you are safe now.
Let those old memories waft out of you.
Out of your body. Out of your muscles. Feel your muscles relax. Send those memories away gently, letting them know you no longer need them.
You no longer need to hold onto them as a reminder of what other bad things can happen. You are safe now. You can release the old road map, you no longer travel those same old roads!
Breathe slowly in, breathe slowly out.
Release the old. Let it float away. Enjoy the feeling as your lungs breathe in fresh new air!
PS: I got together with a friend this past weekend and she told me of an experience she had many years ago where she had stood on the top of a cliff overlooking the land below, and she decided to unburden herself of her “old baggage” she had been carrying around for years and was now ready to let it go, so she did an imaging exercise, where she imagined everything just lifting out of her, rising up and up, until it floated up into the skies, to dissipate and leave her. She said she felt so good afterward, so free from the weight of the emotions that had been haunting her.
Notice I said she “was now ready to let it go”. Being ready to let go of old pains is crucial to this process, or we can subconsciously claw them back inside of us.
Sometimes the need to fester and stew in old memories is stronger than the need to release them.
We sometimes hold onto those old memories to chew on them over and over, either punishing ourselves for something we feel deep guilt over, or we’re punishing our abusers in our minds by creating imagined scenarios where we have the upper hand and where we “win”.
Remember, even Jesus asked the cripple if he wished to be healed, and he didn’t just perform a miracle because he could. He knew that sometimes we wrap our identities around ourselves, like the suffering victim’s coat; we get something out of it, and if we were healed we’d feel so lost without it we’d likely pull that old motheaten coat around our shoulders to be covered by the strange “comfort” it brings.
Telling people to just “snap out of it” or “just put it behind us” really isn’t good advice when the person has no idea how to do it or they may not feel ready to move forward.
If you ARE ready, try the exercises above when those memories try to resurface!
Never mind trying to stuff them back down, for they really do want to be released!
Remember, you are safe now!
If you feel a panic attack coming on, do your breathing and grounding exercises to help you to move through it. Once you do this even 1 time, you will see that you have the ability to do this, and you won’t feel so panicky the next time it happens!
Like Louise Hay who was in her 90s when she recorded that video, our healing from traumatic memories can sometimes keep recurring even years after we thought we were all done with it.
That’s okay, nothing abnormal about it, it happens! The trick is to keep moving through those events when they come up!
Speak gently to yourself when this happens! Don’t berate yourself! Speak gently to the memory, and tell it, “I no longer need you, it’s time to go!” and then visualize it lifting up and out of you!
Keep breathing slowly, and let your muscles relax!
Blessings to you!
I hope you’ll poke around my Archived Posts to find a wonderful trove of supportive and encouraging posts! Don’t forget to Like, Comment, and Follow my blog! If you want to become a Guest writer, please contact me and we’ll work out the details!
I’m sharing more posts that may be helpful for you:
- 10 Steps to Owning Our Happiness
- Setting “Boundaries with consequences”
- Making a change… “How do I take that first step?”
- Affirmation: Today is a new day! I can do this!
- As we practice being gentle and kind with ourselves, we actually help to speed the process of helping our lives become more positive!
- Always believe that wonderful things can happen!
- A healthy outside starts from the inside!
- Brain Rewiring
More good stuff:
- Teaching ourselves to like, even to love ourselves
- By changing our inner dialogue, we change EVERYTHING!
- Challenge: When a negative thought enters your mind, think three positive ones. Train yourself to flip the script!
- Red Ocean or Blue Ocean? How do you think?
- An answer to dealing with the Inner Critic!
- My top 10 most viewed posts, plus a few bonuses!
- A helpful trick to be able to overcome negatively Comparing Ourselves to others…
- Do you only accept yourself if you look a certain way?
- A new you! Is this possible?
- Start today, start tomorrow, just start!
- There is no enlightenment outside of daily life – Thich Nhat Hanh
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