How Does Emotional Energy Pollution Impact You?
Are you feeling an excessive amount of fatigue, tension, irritability or straight up rage, especially after you’ve been interacting with others—in real life or social media?
That, my friends, is called Emotional Energy Pollution (EEP). It is a concept we teach about in Rebirthing-Breathwork, and it is imperative to your well-being that you know about it, especially during this time.
Emotional Energy Pollution, just like other forms of pollution, is the release of excessive, disruptive and often toxic emissions that accumulate in a shared environment.
In this case, the emissions are emotions, and the accumulation happens in our real, or virtual, environments, and then sticks to us. Imagine Pig-Pen, from Charlie Brown, walking around with that cloud of dirt around him.
I’ll break it down:
You wake up in a relatively good mood. As you happily eat your breakfast, your friend calls you with some difficult news. You comfort them, of course, but feel heavy as you hang up the phone. You take a quick look at Facebook and see two incredibly triggering posts from your Aunt Betty and a series of angry rants from various friends. You actually agree with the rants, so now you are pretty fired up yourself.
You get in your car to run an errand and did that asshole REALLY just pull out right in front of you? You head to the post office and the woman behind you is repeatedly shaming her child.
By the time you begin your work day, you feel like shit.
And that’s because you’ve just been EEP’ed. I also like to think of it like being SLIMED in Ghostbusters.
And once you’ve been EEP’ed, you are more likely to project all of that emotion outward, as well. You get snippy with your colleague. You snap at your son during dinner.
The accumulation of EEP is primarily unconscious. We’re not usually aware of the progression of collecting this emotional energy throughout the day, but the impact can be devastating. We feel tired, irritable, sad, angry, hopeless, or any number of strong feelings, but we can’t completely point to a source, so we attribute it to something that makes logical sense, like “work was tough” or “the state of the world really has me down.” And while those logical things may be true, the reason that you feel them more strongly, on any particular day or week, usually has more to do with your level of EEP exposure. EEP can even penetrate your dreams.
As I said, not only do we absorb Emotional Energy Pollution but we also emit it. When we don’t process our own intense emotions like grief and rage, we project them outwards. Ideally, we process and contain our feelings in an emotionally responsible manner. But since that’s not usually the case, the result is EEP. So we absorb others excess emotions and then project outwardly and the EEP cycle continues. I call it emotional hot potato.
Typically, EEP is relatively balanced out in the world because not everyone is suffering at once. But 2020.
So our EEP tide is higher than a 1980’s Blondie song. Sorry. Couldn’t help myself.
In other words, with so much collective struggle, there is a lot of emotional pollution in the air…your own and others.
What to do? What to do?
The first step is becoming conscious that this exists and impacts you and others, whether you are conscious of it or not.
The second step is EEP management. I’ll address that in another post.
In the meantime, start paying attention to how you feel before and after exposure to social media or driving in the city, for example. Social media and dense public spaces are EEP cesspools.
Be careful out there! 😉