Hopefully this is no surprise to you, but our bodies are full of energy. Whether you’re familiar with chi, chakras, auras, meridians, or some other “life force” energy; the common consensus is that this energy flows through all beings in order to maintain health and wellness in mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual capacities.
Just as we have our own energy, we exchange energy with one another when we engage in relationships. You’ve probably experienced relationships (romantic or not) with “good” energy; where you are drawn to or attracted to another for reasons outside of our logical mind. Likewise, you’ve certainly experienced relationships with “bad” energy; where you feel emotionally drained interacting with (or even thinking about) the other person.
Energy in relationships doesn't just dissipate if you are physically separated; this energy binds us together even when distances or circumstances set us apart. Ideally, most of the energy we exchange and hold in our relationships is of the positive, high-vibe nature (or, at the very least, neutral). However, despite our best efforts to build meaningful and positive relationships, there will always be time when life happens and our relationships end up in a state of turmoil. Even relationships with “good” energy can end up in this state. This might occur when we hold onto resentment towards a family member, have a falling out with a friend, separate from a romantic partner, or develop tension with a colleague. Although talking through these differences would be the most logical thing to do; sometimes this option isn’t available to us because of our own pride (or the pride of the other person), because we still need time to heal, or sometimes for other factors completely out of our control.
When this is the case, a common reaction is to bury the negative emotion. We become estranged from those we were once close to, attempt to distract ourselves with new relationships and opportunities, or will ourselves to forget about a situation or person. While these options allow us to avoid initial discomfort, they are not long-term solutions as none of them allow us to actually deal with and release the underlying emotion and energy. Burying a negative emotion is similar to burying a weed: no matter how you cover it up, it will eventually rise back to the surface.
Whether we’re aware of it or not, this negative energy not only impacts us, keeping us “stuck” emotionally (and sometimes in other ways), but - because energy is a frequency that binds us to one another - it continues to affect the other person as well. As long as this energy is trapped, neither person will be able to heal fully. Ensuring that any trapped energy is released and healed can be extremely powerful, regardless of if you hope to re-establish a connection with this person or not.
So, what can we do when we’ve found ourselves in a relationship where energy is “trapped”? Here are some specific steps we can take to help us release this energy and heal the relationship, even from afar:
Be aware. Again, it is tempting to try to “forget about it” when we’ve had a negative exchange or have an unresolved conflict with another. Be aware. If you find yourself thinking of (or even dreaming about) the person with which you’re energetic connection is out of whack, it’s a good sign there is still healing to do. It's important to understand that trapped energies don't have to be entirely negative, but can also form when there is lack of resolution in a situation.
Understand what “healing” means. Healing can come in many forms. It might be a renewed sense of peace and serenity, it might be the complete reunion of a lost relationship, or it might mean the a new and different iteration of a relationship. Whether it’s experienced individually or collectively, healing a negative energy will transform a relationship for the better. This is an important step because, when we set out to transform or heal a relationship, we sometimes seek for it to be on our terms. It’s important to note that healing the energy of a relationship could come in many forms. Approach this process with openness.
Ask for help. Once you understand that healing is needed and that you have little control of how it happens; it’s time to ask for help. This is done by connecting with your inner guidance system. While this is commonly done through prayer, you can achieve a similar release through journaling (try writing a letter to an anonymous recipient asking for help).
Regardless of your current spiritual beliefs and practice, I encourage you to be open to this step. It doesn’t matter what or whom you pray to, just ask for help and be open to receive it in whatever form it comes in. During this step, it is beneficial to ask for help in releasing feelings like judgement, resentment, blame, and guilt. Because you feel justified in harboring these feelings, it will be difficult to fathom how you might release them. All the more reason to ask for help.
As stated in the last step, the idea here is to release control for how the healing occurs. Get out of the way of your logical mind, which seeks to understand and plan. Get out of the way of your ego mind, which seeks to be right. Help is available to you from your inner guidance system, which seeks to have peace and connection. Ask for it and accept it in whatever form it may take.
Clear energy through meditation. If prayer is our medium to ask for guidance and help, meditation is our medium through which we receive it. Meditation is a powerful way to clear negative energy and increase positive energy. I won’t go on and on about the positive effects or different kinds of meditation. There are several meditations aimed at healing relationships across the different disciplines. I find this guided “Cord Cutting” meditation to be an extremely helpful visualization for when you are trying to release and clear negative energy energy. You might also try this Holy Instant Meditation to help change your perspective on a relationship.
Get an energy boost. If you’re still feeling wonky, or simply want an extra boost in the energy department, you can always choose to work with a practitioner who helps with energy healing or clearing. Examples of this are acupressure and reiki. These methods can be tremendously powerful, but I recommend you do not rely on them fully, but continue to do your own inner work to heal.
Wait. When you are ready and willing to release funky energy and heal a relationship, the Universe gets to work fast. With that being said, do not expect instant gratification. You are likely to experience a sense of discomfort as the purpose and energy of your relationship shifts. Be patient and trust that the Universe is working on your behalf and that you will feel the impact of this shift soon.
Focusing on healing leftover energy from a relationship that seems to have dissipated on the physical plane is a big and important step. Clearing old, stagnant, negative energy opens space for new, higher-vibe energy to enter. You'll find that when you put this practice into place, new relationships will appear while old relationships will be repaired or evolve with new meaning.