What comes to mind when you hear the word “purge”?
Maybe throwing up or throwing out old clothes? Maybe crying or cleansing energy with burning herbs? Yes, it is all of these & much more!
So what exactly is purging?
I first became consciously aware of this concept in my first Ayahuasca ceremony. The shaman explained the possible side effects we may experience, the many ways in which we might purge: vomiting, crying, shaking, spitting, feeling extremely hot/cold, thought cycles, bowel movements, & my fave: exhaling/sighing.
Purging is an effective means of letting go. Whether it is physical, spiritual, emotional or mental, there are certain loads we simply must not carry with us for too long.
Emotions like sorrow, anger, guilt, shame & fear need to be regularly recognized & released. Excess physical possessions can weigh a person down & make it difficult to move gracefully. Outdated conceptions of self or relationships with others benefit from renewal. Toxins build up in the body which inhibit optimal functioning & can only evacuate through deep cleansing.
Below are FIVE effective & simple ways one can purge, liberate, or let go:
Releasing with Breath
As I mentioned before, this is one of my favorite & most automatic methods. Using breath to liberate, energize, focus, to be with, is one of the most accessible techniques to optimal well-being.
Take a big breath IN & hold for a few moments. When you’re ready, let a heavy sigh escape your mouth. How’d that feel? Pretty damn good, right? Try it again!
I don’t know exactly why this feels so good, I just know it always works. When stressed, tired, overwhelmed, anxious – deep breath can easily bring one back to calm center.
Shake It Off
Right after you wake up tomorrow, lock yourself in the bathroom with some music on & start moving your body however it wants to. It could be goofy or seductive or WILD. It could be fast shaking movements of every body part, or slow & serpentine circular motions that feel best.
When our bodies move, shake, convulse, shiver & loosen up, they set free not just pinned up physical energy but repressed emotions locked deep inside tissues, fascia, or organs. There’s more in there than you may realize.
So try it for 5 minutes, then maybe work up to 10, then maybe an hour! When you finish, be sure to stand or lie still for a few minutes of reflection to observe how you feel.
After rain comes a rainbow. After tears comes relief & a surprising lightness of being.
See your tears as salty offerings to nourish our earth & even caress these liquid gems over your face & heart as you give gratitude for their sweet escape.
I like to shed tears near rivers or while bathing & imagine that this is how I connect deeper & become more at One with the world around me.
Fire is the ultimate transformer.
Got some old journals or pages filled with word/thought purges? Throw them into a fireplace with cedar or sage. Then watch them turn to ash as you let yourself be warmed amid the winter chill & breathe in the cleansing herbal smoke.
Got anger stored in your liver or shame in your hips? Practice Kundalini Yoga targeted to raise heat & illuminate those commonly blocked areas. Chances are, when you’re engaged in breath of fire in boat pose for five minutes, whatever you were clinging on to will surely fade away.
Got toxic or abusive relationships that are no longer serving your highest good? Yes, burn those fuckin’ bridges to the ground & do not look back. This might be the most difficult to detach from, but often the most necessary.
Every Body Poops
OMG is she really going here? Guilty. And so shameless.
Listen, healthy digestion & elimination are essential & personally make my life much better when on point.
Take probiotics & magnesium on the daily. Drink lots of water. Incorporate citrus, mushrooms & more herbs & spices like ginger, fennel, & cilantro into your diet. Eat chia & flax seeds regularly to flush out the bits that get stuck in the intestines. And try gentle belly massages with peppermint oil & deep twisting postures if you’re feeling stagnant.
Okay, that’s it…not too graphic, right? You can thank me later.
Changes of season & Full Moon phases are always potent times to cleanse.
Take inventory & ask yourself what you could benefit from letting go of.
“Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power
than defending or hanging on.”