What is emotional clutter?

Emotional clutter represents the past that manifests in the present – past hurts, toxic relationships, memories and fears.

When two people come together, they meet at the surface level. Usually, both parties are attracted to the physical aspect and each other’s personalities and exciting conversation. They have a soul connection and are drawn to the body and logical mind but have not yet been acquainted with the emotional mind, the part that can make a relationship or cause a breakup. The emotional mind stores all our emotions, good and bad, including our unhealed emotional wounds!

The relationSHIP vehicle – think of two people deciding to go on a journey choosing a vehicle of their choice. They can only take a certain amount of luggage with them; otherwise, the vehicle will be overloaded and may struggle to stay the course of the journey.

That’s what happens when we bring too much emotional clutter from our past into our relationship.

Some of our emotional clutter may even be ancestral (which we will look at in another post).

How does emotional clutter impact the self and the couple?

Emotional clutter does not usually surface at the beginning of the relationship during the honeymoon phase. Usually, this happens when you are more invested in the relationship, opening up and letting your partner into the deeper parts of yourself. Something gets triggered in one person in the relationship; they may behave unrecognisably to their partner. They seem unreasonable, cold, distant or may behave needily.

When emotional pain is triggered, that person may go into a trance. They may be feeling emotional, transported back to the past whilst being physically present. They may start to accuse their partner of things that has nothing to do with them, or they may behave in a way that may cause their partner to act in a particular manner that reminds them of a person from their past. Their partner may feel like they are being punished for someone else’s actions. At this point, both parties are operating in different ‘time zones’ or speaking other languages. Communication is non-existent at this time.

If this happens regularly, it may cause problems in the relationship; it may even destroy it.

woman and man sitting on brown wooden bench
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8 Tips to clear emotional clutter?

There are different ways to clear emotional pain. The most important thing is that the person who has not healed has to have insight and realise they have a problem, and they MUST be ready to let go of it and release it. Without self-awareness and a willingness to heal, things will only get worse. Even if the couple split up, the wound will follow them into the new relationship. They will keep running into the same problems with others until they heal the wound that keeps bleeding.

To defuse the problem, the person has to work on themselves spiritually, mentally, physically and most importantly, remove the emotional virus causing the issues.

You first have to go to the core of where these problems lie. You have to work from the root cause, not the symptoms. If you work on the presenting symptoms, you will need a repeat prescription for new symptoms.

If the cause is not unpacked and healed, the unprocessed emotions will grow and become toxic. This person will attract similar situations again and again. They may wonder why they keep having the same experiences with different people. They continue to attract the same emotional pain regardless of who they are dating, living with or married to.

You may be able to help yourself, or your situation may require professional help:

Acknowledge it, feel it and release it!

  1. Journal your thoughts and feelings and work on what comes up
  2. Practice EFT to release pent up emotions
  3. Meditation
  4. Practice self-love
  5. Practice self-care
  6. Get a punching bag – shout and punch it out
  7. Get therapy
  8. Work with a relationship coach
woman doing hand heart sign
Photo by Hassan OUAJBIR on Pexels.com

The main thing is not to ignore it.


You may have to repeat this, don’t give up. You will start feeling better, lighter and more accessible. You owe it to yourself to travel light in this world. Do not go through life carrying a 7-piece luggage set of your painful past.  

When you let go of what’s been hurting you, you become more loving to yourself and others. You can give from a deeper place, and you can enjoy life rather than being one of life’s victims.

Book a free coaching session today to find out how you can clear your relationship’s emotional clutter!

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