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Yoga Sequence to Release Negative Energy + Let Go of Difficult Emotions

Joanne Moules
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Do you hold grudges, cling to unhealthy relationships, or smolder with unreleased emotions? You are not alone. Many individuals find it difficult to let go of what has already been done and move on.
 
Part of the struggle of letting go is not being connected and focused on the present moment. Another struggle is the negative energy and painful emotions we have trouble releasing. It’s these negative emotions that keep us from fully experiencing the present moment.
 
Yoga is a wonderful practice of being present and finding freedom – from the past, from negative energy, and from anything holding you back from activating your full potential.
 

Why is it difficult to let go of negative energy and emotions?

We have developed patterns and conditioning from a young age that make it difficult to release emotions and energies that no longer serve us. When our mind produces a thought, it becomes a feeling. If we have experienced a similar thought or feeling in the past, our mind will then create an emotion based on these past experiences.
 

Negative emotions keep us from fully experiencing the present moment

 
Each time we have the same thought, the same emotion will arise and a pattern will develop. This makes it difficult to release negative emotions because we have conditioned our mind and body to repeat the same pattern. However, an effective way to move negative emotions and break the pattern is to physically move our bodies, and shake up the energy within.
 

How can yoga help move the unwanted energy?

The use of pranayama (breathwork), asana (yoga postures) and relaxation are essential to releasing energy blocks and tension from the physical body. To free yourself from holding on to pain, you must allow your life force or prana to travel freely within your body.
 

 
 

How to use pranayama to help release negative emotions and move on:

 

Basic breathwork

 

  • Sit cross-legged with a tall spine and your hands resting on your knees
  • Ground down through the sits bones as you extend up through the crown of your head
  • With your eyes closed, deepen your breath and fill your belly with oxygen
  • Pause for a few seconds
  • Then slowly exhale all of the air from your belly
  • Repeat this practice for 2 – 3 minutes

 

Practice these 8 yoga poses to help release negative emotions and move on:

 

1. Bound Angle Pose (Baddha Konasana)

Butterfly-release-negative-energy
 
We tend to hold much of our trauma and emotional energy in our hips. Bound Angle Pose will gently release your hips and help move blocked energy through and out of the body.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin seated on your mat
  • Bend your knees and bring the soles of your feet to touch
  • Keep your feet on the mat and gently open the soles of your feet with your hands as though you are opening a book
  • Inhale and lengthen your spine
  • Exhale and gently allow the knees to relax toward the ground
  • Repeat for a few breaths

 

2. Upward Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana)

Updog-release-negative-energy
 
To release trapped emotions, we need to be able to communicate effectively. Upward Facing Dog relieves tension in the throat and helps balance and unblock the throat chakra.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin on your stomach with your legs extended and the tops of your feet pushing into the ground
  • Plant your palms on the mat directly beneath your shoulders
  • As you inhale, push into your hands and lift your body off the mat. Keep your feet grounded
  • Keep the sternum lifted to avoid compressing the lower spine
  • Stay here for a few breaths

 

3. Plank Pose (Kumbhakasana)

Plank-release-negative-energy
 
Plank Pose benefits the nervous system and helps strengthen your core. When we’re strong physically, we feel stronger and more confident mentally and emotionally too, so a strong core can help you cope with any challenges you face.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin in Table Top Pose with your fingers spread widely
  • Keep your shoulders active and your gaze in between your hands
  • Step both feet back, tuck your toes, and lift your knees off the mat
  • Reach the crown of the head forward and your heels back
  • Press down actively through each fingertip to protect your wrists
  • Activate your core to keep your hips lifted
  • Hold for a few breaths

 

4. Lion Pose (Simhasana)

Lion-release-negative-energy
 
Lion Pose releases tension held in the jaw joint (which is either the result of or can subconsciously cause us to grit our teeth – and in either case, can create a place of stress and fatigue within the jaw). When we’re able to soften the body physically, we can then soften our anxiety about the past to help release negative emotions.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin kneeling with your hands resting on your knees
  • Sit up tall and take a deep inhalation through the nose
  • As you exhale, open your mouth very wide and reach your tongue toward your chin
  • Direct your gaze to your third eye or to the tip of your nose
  • As the breath releases, make a soft “haaa” sound
  • Be sure not to roar – let the breath do the work, not the vocal chords
  • Repeat a few times

 

5. Tree Pose (Vrksasana)

Tree-release-negative-energy
 
Tree Pose is the perfect balancing posture to help you focus on the present instead of feeling stuck in the past. Focusing on the present, even for a few moments, will help the mind and body release the stagnant energy holding you back.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin in Mountain Pose
  • Bring your body weight into your left foot and find a focal point to set your gaze on (this is called your Drishti)
  • Come onto the ball of the right foot and open your right knee toward the right side of the room
  • Rest the sole of your right foot on your left calf or left inner thigh (option for full lotus variation if that’s part of your practice)
  • Bring your palms to touch at heart center
  • Focus on engaging the entire body and standing tall through the spine
  • Hold for a few breaths, and repeat on the other side

 

6. Standing Pigeon Pose (Standing Figure Four)

Standing-Pigeon-release-negative-energy
 
Standing Pigeon Pose requires your full focus in order to remain balanced, which keeps you in the present moment. Standing Pigeon Pose, or Standing Figure Four, also works on opening your hips, which in turn helps release negative energy and emotions.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin in Mountain Pose
  • Bring your body weight into your left foot and find a focal point in the room
  • Rest your right ankle on your left thigh and flex the right foot
  • Bend the left knee and keep the inner thighs and core engaged
  • Bring your palms to touch in front of your chest
  • Hold for a few breaths, and repeat on the other side

 

7. Supported Headstand (Salamba Sirsasana)

Headstand-release-negative-energy
 
Headstand invites you to literally see the world from a different perspective. Inversions move the energy within your body and helps you let go of stagnant energy and emotion. Headstands are also called the King of Asanas due to their stress- and anxiety-relieving benefits so you emerge feeling calm, relieved, and in control of your emotions.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin in Table Top Pose
  • Place your forearms on the floor with your elbows shoulder-width apart
  • Interlace your fingers
  • Place the crown of your head on the mat and the back of your head into your palms
  • Slowly lift your knees and walk your feet towards your head
  • Press into your forearms to protect your neck
  • Once your hips are stacked over your shoulders, lift your right leg
  • If you feel strong here, activate your core and bring the left knee into your chest or your left leg to meet your right leg
  • Keep your legs, core and shoulders active
  • Practice against a wall if you feel more comfortable
  • Hold for a few breaths

 

8. Corpse Pose (Savasana)

Shirvasana-release-negative-energy
Savasana is the ultimate opportunity to allow yourself to release and let go. In the silence and stillness of Savasana you can become more aware of what is holding you back, so use this opportunity to let go of any negative energy and emotion.
 
Let’s try it:

  • Begin reclined on your yoga mat with your legs extended and your arms relaxed by your side
  • Notice any areas of the body that may be holding tension such as your forehead or jaw, and with each exhale release the tension
  • Explore using yoga props like a blanket or eye pillow to help you find more comfort
  • Relax your breath
  • Rest and restore for 5 – 10 minutes

 
When you hold grudges, when you can’t release things or negative energy from your past, you only cause yourself and others more pain. The present moment is all you have, so don’t waste it on negative energy. Move on, love yourself and know that all is well. Namaste.
 

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Joanne Moules

Inspired by her love of life and community, Jo specializes in teaching yoga to children with special needs and teens under 18. Also an online business coach, she mentors and supports other like-minded goddesses to achieve their goals. She will gladly admit that she is a Kundalini yoga chick but also enjoys and teaches a 'fusion' of different traditions - it's all yoga! When not teaching, coaching or writing, you'll find Jo at home in rural Lincolnshire, UK with her son playing at amateur dramatics and eating Indian food.

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