When you begin a relationship, you are bringing your past with you into that new partnership. This would be all of your emotional baggage. A lot of that baggage is the unexpressed feelings that you have against a friend, family member, coworker or even a previous partner. Usually, those unexpressed feelings have to do with feelings of being hurt. Emotional baggage can also be a form of grief over the loss of a loved one. Essentially, anything that you haven’t processed is going to weigh you down. That will impact your new relationship. Emotional baggage can also have a ripple effect across your entire life. That is why it is important to take stock of your emotional baggage and find a way to unpack it once and for all.

Start on the Outside

What are the areas of your life that just aren’t working out? It might be a dead-end job or the fact that you’re carrying a lot of credit card debt. You might also have been struggling with some health issues tied into your diet. All of those issues could be rooted in your emotional baggage. Guess what? Those are the easy ones to fix because they are primarily external. Put a plan together for working out and eating better, then stick to it. Focus on saving and redirect those funds to paying down your debt. Start looking for a new job. Just don’t quit your current one until you’ve found a new one. By focusing on those external issues, you can realign your emotional issues.

Express Yourself

A lot can be said for making a list of all the feelings or things that you wished you could have said to someone in your past. There is still an opportunity to do that. You can express yourself through an email or phone call to that person. This is part of the forgiving process and that is something that takes time. You might discover that the person that you are forgiving doesn’t feel like they’ve wronged you. In a way, it doesn’t matter what they think. You want to get to the place where you’re at peace because you’ve expressed your feelings. What they do with that is on them and not you.

Talk to a Professional

It might help you to unpack your emotional baggage if you talk to a professional therapist. The right therapist can create a safe place for you to vent all your frustrations and hurt feelings. It might be that merely saying them out loud to an objective listener is all you need to begin the healing process.

Unpacking your emotional baggage is how to lead a more enriching life. That is a goal we should all embrace.