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Find Happiness 9: How to Detach Yourself from Your Thoughts by Lucky Balaraman

Imagine you’re sitting on a meadow looking at the sky and a flock of birds flies slowly across your field of vision. You watch the birds enter your view, keep watching as they cross it and then exit it. There’s you, and there’s the birds. No question about that, right? You certainly don’t feel that the birds are part of you. They’re objects and you’re watching them. That’s VERY clear. You might not realize it, but your thought process is remarkably similar… Your thoughts are passing by in front of you and you’re only watching them. They’re objects, just like the birds. They are not you. They are the products of your brain. A thought like, “I’m depressed” or “I’m so happy” is just like one of those birds. So is “What a lousy life I’m leading” or “Life is so cool!” They’re all like those birds, and you’re watching them. But all these days you felt those thoughts were “you.” So how do you experience that you are separate from your thoughts and just watching them? Easy. Sit quietly somewhere, close your eyes and watch what’s going on in your head. As soon as you “think” something, try and locate the answer to the question, “Who was aware of that thought?” The answer is the basic “you”, and the result will be that you separate “yourself” from that thought. Perform this process on a daily basis on several thoughts (10 minutes a day will do). Gradually you will realize you are separate from all your thoughts; you will in other words realize that they are objects and you are an observer. Since emotions are nothing

but thoughts, you separate yourself from them too. Since the basic “you” is separate from your emotions, it feels no sadness, happiness, frustration or any other emotions. Sound dull? Not really. On the other hand, bereft of thoughts/emotions of all kinds, you are actually at perfect peace. Please be aware that at no point am I saying that you should suppress your thoughts. Your thoughts should certainly keep flowing, only you should watch them like you watched those birds fly over your field. This is the secret to being peaceful at all times. Try it, it really works

Emotional Detachment Improve Your Life
By Remez Sasson

Can

(Part of the article is excerpted from the soon to be published book, Emotional Detachment for Better Life.) Are you quick to get angry? Do your moods go up and down often? Are you easily affected by what people say or think about you? Can an insignificant incident destroy your whole day? Do you allow situations and people to affect your moods and behavior? Do you lack inner peace? Imagine how free, relieved and happy you would be, if you could stay calm and poised in the midst of whatever is happening in your life. Think how much physical, emotional and mental energy you could spare, if you were able to avoid becoming upset, angry or moody. Emotional agitation, anger, and hurt feelings, cause stress and unhappiness, and lead nowhere, except to more pain, suffering and broken relationships. They disturb your mind, disrupt your concentration, and prevent you from focusing on the matters at hand. If you wish to enjoy inner peace, it is imperative that you try to gain at least some degree of detachment. Too much emotional involvement with matters that do not concern you, or are not important, take too much of your time, energy and health. Excessive
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and prevent you from focusing on the matters at hand. compassion and love. and to avoiding changes. when dealing with family or friends. relieved and happy you would be. However. It is most useful in many situations. and is essential for every person who wishes to become free from worries. in your relationships with your family. if you could stay calm and poised in the midst of whatever is happening in your life. actions and reactions. in the pursuit of ambitions and on the spiritual path. disrupt your concentration. Detachment. anger. Let me give you a few examples of detachment. if you could avoid becoming upset. your attitude toward them. Too much emotional involvement with matters that do not concern you. maintain a state of composure and equanimity. What happens. words and actions influence your happiness. like any other skill. follow them. tie you down. unaffected by circumstances. Emotional agitation. when somebody says to you something that you don’t like? You will probably become angry. I am not talking about physical detachment and avoiding people. you need at least some degree of emotional detachment. Think how much physical. angry or moody. you enjoy a state of inner peace and equanimity. Suppose you meditate. This skill can help you stay focused. is an inner attitude. your thoughts and your past. You let other’s people thoughts. Emotional detachment would not necessarily make your life problems-free. relatives. and with everyone else. friends and co-workers. except to more pain. and the way you react. because this is part of life. which allows you to interact with other people. or are not important. If you could show detachment. and lead nowhere. emotional.emotional involvement agitates your mind and feelings. Why is this so? Because you value other people’s words and opinions more than you value your own thoughts and opinions of yourself. Emotional Detachment For a Better Life By Remez Sasson Emotional detachment can be very useful in your job. Detachment would have helped you to stay collected and concentrated. Detachment is important in daily life. or at your job. unhappy or feel hurt. or by other people’s moods and states of mind. If you wish to enjoy inner peace. Are you quick to get angry? Do you take everything too personally? Do your moods go up and down often? Can an insignificant incident destroy your whole day? Are you easily affected by what people say or think about you? Do you allow situations and people to affect your moods and behavior? Do you lack inner peace? The good news is that you can change this situation! Imagine how free. On the other hand. to fear of letting go. Emotional detachment is a skill you can learn to master. Emotional involvement leads to attachment. otherwise you let people and events. fears and anxiety. You will still encounter disturbing circumstances and disturbing people. and mental energy you could spare. It is valuable to everyone. but thoughts keep coming into your mind. If you wish progress in life. take too 2 . show warmth. and yet. it would have been easier to ignore the disturbing thoughts. You get emotionally involved with your thoughts. and prevents you from experiencing inner peace. in the sense referred here. They disturb your mind. it is imperative that you try to gain at least some degree of emotional detachment. when you possess emotional detachment. your state of mind. and hurt feelings. and forget about your meditation and concentration. suffering. would change. whether pursuing spirituality or material success. and use common sense in the daily affairs of your life. cause stress and unhappiness. and broken relationships.

your thoughts and your past. Excessive emotional involvement agitates your mind and feelings. You will still encounter disturbing circumstances and disturbing people. Emotional detachment. maintain a state of composure and equanimity. A state of emotional detachment is most useful in many situations. If you wish progress in life. It is an inner attitude. Discover how to remain calm and balanced. Important! Detachment. your attitude toward them. fear of letting go. and yet. everywhere. and use judgement and common sense in pressing and difficult situations. your state of mind. who burden you with their worries and problems. you need at least some degree of emotional detachment. reactions or behavior. as taught in this book. show warmth. calmness. and inner stregth. Find out how to remain calm and unaffected in the company of people. would change. which is unaffected by external circumstances. which enables you to maintain a state of composure and equanimity. You can interact with other people. and to avoiding changes. energy and health. compassion and love. and the way you react. Emotional detachment would not necessarily make your life problems-free. It helps you avoid becoming upset by what people say or do. but it allows you to act and react calmly and with common sense.much of your time. show warmth. self-control and psychic integrity. Emotional detachment is a skill. because this is part of life. however. without emotional agitation. which you can learn like any other skill. undisturbed by circumstances or other people's moods and states of mind. nor by people's moods or states of mind. show warmth. and by circumstances and events. Emotional detachment protects you from being upset by external conditions or situations. and right judgement. just like a calm lake that is undisturbed by winds or waves. and obstructs inner peace. Emotional detachment produces a state of inner peace and equanimity. which allows you to interact with other people. does not make you want to avoid meeting people or experiencing feelings. Well-developed emotional detachment produces a state of inner peace and equanimity. and is vital for every person. It does not necessarily change your circumstances. and in all walks of life. has nothing to do with avoiding people or feelings. worrying about the future. One of the important characteristics of emotional detachment is the ability to avoid getting involved with unnecessary or unhealthy emotions and reactions. or hurt your feelings. compassion and love. and taking everything too personally. Emotional detachment can help you maintain a state of calmness. otherwise you let people and events. or at your job. True detachment is an inner attitude. and yet. or by their emotions. which often clouds the 3 . common sense. compassion and love. fears and anxiety. hurt feelings. and reliving them in your mind over and again. Emotional involvement leads to attachment. Learn how to avoid becoming agitated by what people say or do. Learn how to avoid dwelling on distressing or unpleasant events from your past. when dealing with family or friends. as taught in this book. maintain a state of equanimity. when handling your daily affairs of life and in your interactions with people. unduly affect you life. and at the same time interact with other people. Emotional detachment is essential for every person who wishes to become free from worries. dwelling on what this or that person said. It is the antidote to constant thinking about the past.

manipulative or negative people. What is detachment? Detachment is the: * Ability to allow people. co-workers or friends. disturbed." * Ability to avoid being hurt. Emotional detachment can be applied in your relationships with strangers. concern and caring without the negative results of rescuing. * Ability to maintain an emotional bond of love. If your boss. you will be able to remain calm. * Willingness to accept that you cannot change or control a person. With this ability. undisturbed and fearless. or hurt your feelings. even when you cannot drive faster or let him pass. place or thing. relatives. This ability will also help you stay away from worries about current problems. * Ability to let people you love and care for accept personal responsibility for their own actions and to practice tough love and not give in when they come to you to bail them out when their actions lead to failure or trouble for them. It is useful when dealing with family or friends. and also in your relationships with people you know. save or fix another person from being sick.judgment and wastes unnecessary emotional and physical energy. or hurt by emotionally demanding. rational perspective and recognizing that there is a need to back away from the uncontrollable and unchangeable realities of life. * Establishing of emotional boundaries between you and those people you have become overly enmeshed or dependent with in order that all of you might be able to develop your own sense of autonomy and independence. This skill can also help you at your job. places or things. What are the negative effects not detaching? If you are unable to detach from people. and avoid reliving them in your mind over and again. or are harsh on you. It protects you from being manipulated. abused. * Process by which you are free to feel your own feelings when you see another person falter and fail and not be led by guilt to feel responsible for their failure or faltering. colleagues or customers demand too much of you. who intentionally or unintentionally burden you with their worries and problems. such as when a driver behind you keeps honking. * Ability to allow people to be who they "really are" rather than who you "want them to be. making you do things that you don't want to do. * Disengaging from an over-enmeshed or dependent relationship with people. It also helps you stay calm and unaffected. enabling. Developing Detachment Content What is detachment? What are the negative effects not detaching? How is detachment a control issue? What irrational thinking leads to an inability to detach? How to Develop Detachment Steps in Developing Detachment * Holding back from the need to rescue. then you: 4 . places or things the freedom to be themselves. * Placing of all things in life into a healthy. taken advantage of by people who in the past have been overly dependent or enmeshed with you. * Giving another person "the space" to be herself. who try to manipulate you through guilty conscience. you can keep away thoughts about distressing or unpleasant events from your past. fixing or controlling. when in the company of people. * Developing and maintaining of a safe. dysfunctional or irrational. and with anyone else. and from worries about the future. with family. emotional distance from someone whom you have previously given a lot of power to affect your emotional outlook on life. A state of emotional detachment is most useful in many situations. * Ability to exercise emotional self-protection and prevention so as not to experience greater emotional devastation from having hung on beyond a reasonable and rational point.

power. * Run the risk of performing tasks because of the intimidation you experience from people. place or thing. * By being "selfless" and "centered" on other people. either profoundly under its control or it is under your control. * You might be so manipulated by another's con. * If you do not detach from people. * You might be an addicted caretaker. * Might become caught up with your idealistic need to make everything perfect for people. fixer or rescuer who cannot let go of a person. what will they do without you? * They need you and that is enough to justify your continued involvement. * Run the risk of being manipulated to do things for people. * Although you will still have feelings for those persons. * What if they commit suicide because of your detachment? You must stay involved to avoid this. * The ability to "keep distance" emotionally or physically requires self-control and the inability to do so is a sign that you are "out of control. * You might feel intimidated or coerced to stay deeply attached with someone for fear of great harm to yourself or that person if you don't remain so deeply involved.* Will have people. you will have given them the freedom to become what they will be on their own merit. place or thing with which you become involved to feel the sense of personal responsibility to become a unique. independent and autonomous being with no fear of retribution or rebuke if they don't please you by what they become. if you rationally recognize your relationship with a person. * Will most probably become powerless in the face of the demands of the people. * Will be blind to the reality that the people. 5 . you might be powerless over this behavior which is beyond your personal control. places or things which control you are the uncontrollables and unchangeables you need to let go of if you are to become a fully healthy. control and responsibility. brainwashed or psychically in a trance when you are in the presence of someone from whom you cannot detach. * It allows every person. * You might be mesmerized." * If you are not able to detach emotionally or physically from a person. coping individual." * If you are not able to detach from another person. * Will be so driven by guilt and emotional dependence that the sickness in the relationship will worsen. How is detachment a control issue? Detachment is a control issue because: * It is a way of de-powering the external "locus of control" issues in your life and a way to strengthen your internal "locus of control. then you are What irrational thinking leads to an inability to detach? * If you should stop being involved. places or things which become over-dependent on you. place or thing. places or things whom you have given the power to control you. place or thing is unhealthy and the only recourse left is to get out of the relationship. places or things. places and things from which you have become detached." overdependency or "hooks" that you cannot leave them to solve their own problems. * Will be easily influenced by the perception of helplessness which these people. places or things important to you even if it means your own life becomes unhealthy. place or thing. * Can become an obsessive "fix it" who needs to fix everything you perceive to be imperfect. * Run the risk of losing your autonomy and independence and derive your value or worth solely from the unhealthy relationship you continue in with the unhealthy person. places or things. you could be so busy trying to "control" them that you completely divert your attention from yourself and your own needs. places or things project. * Will most probably put off making a decision and following through on it. you are really a controller trying to fix them to meet the image of your ideal for them. * Run the risk of becoming out of control of yourself and experience greater low self-esteem as a result. "helplessness. at places or with things which you do not really want to do. place or thing you believe cannot care for itself.

* If one hurts in the system. * If you should let go of this relationship too soon. support and direction. * Being detached seems so cold and aloof. suffering. * They have so many problems. You can't be that way when you love and care for a person. you need to: First: Establish emotional boundaries between you and the person. you must always be forgiving and continue to extend your hand in help and support. Fourth: Make a commitment to your personal recovery and self-health by admitting to yourself and your Higher Power that there is only one person you can change and that is yourself and that for your serenity you need to let go of the "need" to fix.* You would feel so guilty if anything bad should happen to them after you reduced your involvement with them. * You would rather forgo all the pleasures of this world in order to assist others to be happy and successful. Fifth: Recognize that it is "sick" and "unhealthy" to believe that you have the power or control enough to fix. change. * When they are in "trouble. Second: Take back power over your feelings from persons. * You need them as much as they need you. It seems so unnatural. place or thing with whom you have become overly enmeshed or dependent on. when another is in dire need of help. rescue or heal other persons. correct. places or things which in the past you have given power to affect your emotional well-being. confused and hurting. * Detachment sounds so final. 6 . we all hurt. problems and troubles. Third: "Hand over" to your Higher Power the persons. * When you meet people who are "helpless. places and things which you would like to see changed but which you cannot change on your own. It sounds so distant and non-reachable. * Tough love is a cruel. Sixth: Recognize that you need to be healthy yourself and be "squeaky clean" and a "role model" of health in order for another to recognize that there is something "wrong" with them that needs changing. they need you. * You never want anybody in a relationship to be emotionally detached from you so why would you think it a good thing to do for others? * The family that plays together stays together. You could never allow yourself to have a relationship where there is so much emotional distance between you and others. place or thing. * How can being detached from them help them? It seems like you should do more to help them. * No matter how badly your loved ones hurt and abuse you. How to Develop Detachment In order to become detached from a person. hurt. * They are absolutely dependent on you at this point and to back off now would be a crime. heal or rescue another person. * You should never question the costs. You do not have a good relationship with others unless you share in their pain. places and things. * You can't control yourself because everyday you promise yourself "today is the day" you will detach your feelings but you feel driven to them and their needs. you must always get involved and try to help them solve the problems. It's either 100 percent all the way or no way at all." how can you ignore their "pleas" for help? It seems cruel and inhuman. emotional or physical. * You can never "give too much" when it comes to providing emotional support. the other might change to be like the fantasy or dream you want them to be. Never do anything without including the significant others in your life. place or thing if they do not want to get better nor see a need to change. comforting and care of those whom you love and cherish. be they material. advice. change. It's all for one and one for all. inhuman and anti-loving philosophy of dealing with the troubled people in our lives and you should instead love them more when they are in trouble since "love" is the answer to all problems. * When you see people in trouble." you must step in to give them assistance.

physical. Eighth: Accept personal responsibility for your own unhealthy actions. Address these beliefs and replace them with healthy.Seventh: Continue to own your feelings as your responsibility and not blame others for the way you feel. * Other is self-destructive or suicidal. Eleventh: Reduce the impact of guilt and other irrational beliefs which impede your ability to develop detachment in your life. Step 4: Identify all of the reasons why you are being hurt and your physical. * Relationship in which you are a chronic fixer. Step 2: Once you have identified the persons." "unhealthy" and "toxic" influences in your life. * Relationship in which there is no forgiveness or forgetting and all past hurts are still brought up to hurt one another. Hand these people. . lost and out of control. Steps in Developing Detachment Step 1: It is important to first identify those people. Tenth: Accept that many people. places and things in your life from which you would be best to develop emotional detachment in order to retain your personal. * Other appears helpless. place or thing is "sick. * Relationship in which your obligation and loyalty won't allow you to let go. more rational ones. and that no matter what you say. * Punitive or abusive to you. enabling are "sick" behaviors and strive to extinguish these behaviors in your relationship to persons. * Smothering you. * Other has an addictive disease. * You are overly dependent on the other. Ninth: Accept that addicted fixing. Accept that there is only one thing you can change in life and that is you. emotional and spiritual health. emotional and spiritual health is being threatened by the relationship. and stop minimizing their negative impact in your life. then you need to take each one individually and work through the following steps. * Other has the power to impact your feelings about yourself. Step 5: Accept and admit to yourself that the other person. feelings and thinking and cease looking for the persons. 7 Types of Toxic Relationships * You find it hard to let go of because it is addictive. * Relationship in which your needs and wants are ignored. places and things you have a toxic relationship with. * Relationship in which you and the other are competitive for control. do or demand you will not be able to control or change this reality. threatening. Change your expectations that things will be better than what they really are. places and things. * Coercive." dysfunctional or irrational. * Other is overly dependent on you. * Relationship in which you have a fantasy or dream that the other will come around and change to be what you want. places or things you can blame for your unhealthiness. Twelfth: Practice "letting go" of the need to correct. * The other is emotionally unavailable to you. intimidating to you. rescuing. * Relationship in which you are being manipulated and conned. rescuer or enabler. places or things over to your Higher Power and let go of the need to change them. Step 3: Identify the irrational beliefs in the toxic relationship which prevent you from becoming detached. places and things in your past and current life are "irrational. places or things in your life fit any of the following 20 categories. fix or make better the persons. * When guilt is a major motivating factor preventing your letting go and detaching. To do this you need to review the following types of toxic relationships and identify in your journal if any of the people. All others are the unchangeables in your life. label them honestly for what they truly are. places and things in life over which you have no control or power to change. * Non-productive and non-reinforcing for you.

* To "let go" is not to be protective. but to care about. scold or argue. * To "let go" is not to be in the middle arranging all the outcomes. Step 9: Continue to call upon your Higher Power for the strength to continue to let go and detach. * To "let go" is not to cut myself off. health-engendering relationships in your life. 8 . "Letting Go" * To "let go" does not mean to stop caring. it's the realization I can't control another. * To "let go" is not to criticize and regulate anybody. but to be supportive. then return to Step 1 and begin all over again. * To "let go" is not to fix. but to try to become what I dream I can be. * To "let go" is not to care for. but to grow and live for the future. but to allow another to be a human being. place or thing the power to affect or impact your feelings about yourself. Step 11: Continue to detach and let go and work at self-recovery and self-healing as this poem implies. but to accept. wholesome. it means I can't do it for someone else. * To "let go" is not to judge. at home. * To "let go" is not to deny. You are a good person and deserve healthy relationships. work and in the community. which means the outcome is not in my hands. Step 7: Affirm yourself as being a person who "deserves" healthy. * To "let go" is to fear less and love myself more. * To "let go" is to not regret the past. * To "let go" is not to adjust everything to my desires.Step 6: Work out reasons why there is no need to feel guilt over letting go and being emotionally detached from this relationship and free yourself from guilt as you let go of the emotional "hooks" in the relationship. * To "let go" is not to nag. but instead to search out my own shortcomings and correct them. Step 12: If you still have problems detaching. * To "let go" is to admit powerlessness. * To "let go" is not to try to change or blame another. but to allow others to affect their own destinies. but to allow learning from natural consequences. it's to make the most of myself. * To "let go" is not to enable. Step 10: Continue to give no person. Step 8: Gain support for yourself as you begin to let go of your emotional enmeshment with these relationships. but to take each day as it comes and cherish myself in it. it's to permit another to face reality.