The benefits of emotional detachment

The benefits of emotional detachment

When we talk about emotional detachment we don't mean being distant or withdrawing from the world around us as if we were hermits. We can be passionate, enthusiastic and committed to life and at the same time maintain the emotional distance Enough to preserve our individuality.


  • 1 Excessive attachment and its consequences
  • 2 What gives us detachment
  • 3 How to practice detachment

Excessive attachment and its consequences

An excess of attachment to other people (the couple, parents or children), objects, as well as exaggerated emotions create drama and inner confusion. Especially in cases of overidentification where happiness and the meaning of life are based on success, achievements and possessions.

The compulsion, obsession, the need for excessive validation and clinging too much to something or someone can literally tear us apart when the results are disappointing or things don't work as we thought, generating us chronic stress, fatigue, conflict and exhaustion. Anxiety, concern for unfavorable results in the face of our future prospects, potential dangers and change also contribute greatly to physical and mental stress.

What gives us detachment

For some people detachment can help them deepen their own self, for others this type of separation seems almost impossible. Detachment is an internal process which must be undertaken while remaining immersed and active in other vital events.

Even so, detachment helps us to realize in a more serene way what is happening around us, without involving ourselves to the point of reaching emotional suffering. It's like witnessing the events without being directly affected, we move away from immediate confusion and reflect on the true meaning of events or people's behavior.

In many cases, if we stop to think, we will see that more than an exaggerated reaction is the result of making a mountain a grain of sand. This does not mean that we should deny the existence of serious problems that can unbalance us. However, most of the time, events are less catastrophic than we initially believe. In any case, only when we let the storm diminish can we think and assess the situation clearly.

Detachment allows us to live an intentional life based on our values, goals and aspirations. It gives us the mental freedom to make decisions about how to be, rather than absorbed by events. By less emotionally evaluating what is under our control and what is not, we can act accordingly. If our limits are exceeded, we can stand firm. Adversity will not break us in the same way, or at least, we will reach a clearer vision to find better ways to get out of it.

Our central self must be independent of external factors. With a healthy detachment, we will get a sense of integrity and inner peace much greater. We can be alone with ourselves, feeling firm and confident that we can face the currents and obstacles of life.

How to practice detachment

  • Accept reality. Let us evaluate from the heart what we can change or what we need to let go, what is our current problem or problems, if there are any, and observe what we are doing with it. Not everything should be taken from a personal point of view, let's put some distance in our vision of things.
  • Focus on solutions instead of problems. Ruminating about what is wrong or could go wrong only contributes to stagnation and defeat. How do we deal with this? It is a good question that we should ask ourselves instead of thinking that all is lost.
  • Accept yourself. Do not punish yourself for your mistakes. We must make peace with ourselves to be at peace and accept our imperfections like any other human being. In most cases, neither our mistakes nor those of others are calamities so great that there is no going back.
  • Search for emotional stability. Emotions often seem to go on their own, coming and going, going up and down, apparently of their own accord. It is as if we cannot fight them directly. But they don't have to control us. But what we can do is work with our thoughts and our conversations. While many events may seem terrible to us, they are nothing but facts that we have processed under the influence of our beliefs and experiences. We must challenge them to make sure that these thoughts are actually realistic and constructive.
  • Take responsibility for our actions, emotions and thoughts. No one can force us to do or feel something. How we respond to life's challenges is something that is completely under our choice.
  • Impulse containment. If something is not entirely clear, let's stop to think, do not give an immediate response carried by the nerves or with precipitation.
  • Let's recognize our emotional luggage: this includes guilt, bitterness, hatred, regrets or self-pity. Holding on to the wounds of the past will keep us stuck. To process and overcome negative emotions we must observe the past event with a certain degree of detachment, trying to understand what went wrong, who did what, when and why.
  • Take distance from other people's opinions and actions, even when we are in a close relationship with someone. We can be supportive of others, but their life is theirs to live as they wish. Everyone has their own way to walk.
  • Embrace the uncertainty. If we can do something to create clarity, go ahead. If not, let's go with the flow and adopt the attitude that we have what we need to face what the future holds.
  • Be present in the here and now. This is the basic rule not to fall into the hands of depression and anxiety, only then can we take control.

"You always have the option of taking all things in a balanced way, not clinging to anything, receiving every anger as if you only had fifteen minutes of life"Tolbert McCarroll

It may interest you: What is the Theory of Attachment?