A simple form of therapy consists of placing a trash bag around your body. It consists of covering your face entirely and upper torso but making sure it is a loose bag in the legging area to prevent breathing issues.

It is important that we find positive ways to handle issues that have an enormous weight on our esteem. Many young people use counterproductive and destructive ways when dealing with their negative emotions such as destroying property or physical violence to cope with their issues. At Risk Youth and Domestic Violence Victims can benefit the most from learning to control and channel their emotions in a positive fashion.

However, anyone who faces emotional challenges can benefit from this technique.

Obviously you could escape by simply lifting the bag over your head, but that will not help you handle your emotions.

This requires you to think back to when you were a kid and let your imagination lead the way..

Whatever emotion you are trying to capture and release such as anger, sadness, joy, is brought out to the surface.

Once in the bag the participant should come up with gestures and sounds that correspond to what you are feeling.

Rip the bag open while in it, scream or shout whatever you feel you need to get that emotion out… It will take a while to figure out how to rip it open. Trust me it seems like it is easy but it is not.

Say outloud one of the following:

I need to break free of…

I will escape from this…

No more bullying me…

I am a strong person…

I have had enough…

This will help free you of the emotional turmoil of the moment.

Depending on the durability of the individual bag it may take a while to rip some holes in it. And be able to grasp it and tear it wide open.

As far as tearing the bag, it is also pretty cool when you rip it open to take some pics with friends make it a group experience. Take several pics as the bag stretches over parts of your face, arms and rest of your body. It is not easy to tear the bag open, both hands are needed. So if you are planning on filming it have someone else do the actual camera holding and filming.

Trash bags are cheap you can get them at 99 cent store ten for a dollar if you look. Depending on how many you need more than likely you will need to practice.

Superhero exercise

Another way to show how strong you are is to imagine that you have a super power. Do you have super strength or invisibility or able to put capture someone else in the black hole of your bag? Place the bag over you then pull it over your head and throw it down. Imagine the pressure of life and the walls closing in on you. How would you bust out of that feeling as a superhero? Or it could be a villain. It almost looks like you become like the comic book character of Venom a character featured in Spiderman comics. Black strands envelop the character until he is covered in a mostly black outfit. Of course is the reverse, but the point is to have some fun with it.

Discover and try things out experiment play in the bag itself. What do you want people to immediately think of you as are you really strong or super smart or creative? After the bag is off of you and reveal your superpower.

Letting Go

Another exercise is to draw a bag on a piece of paper. Then draw visual images of things you need to let go of inside the bag. They could be jealousy, laziness, or pride. Think of an image that represents that negative feeling. Imagine the pressure of life and the walls closing in.

Draw the items in the bag you would like to get rid of and label them as such to help free yourself. Discuss what was in the bag and talk out loud about these things you are letting go of…

If you have any fears of performing in public this can help overcome that type of performance anxiety as well.

Trash Bag Therapy can make a difference in your daily routine as far as letting go of all those negative emotions that hold you back.. It’s simple , cheap and effective constructive way to channel and overcome overwhelming emotions.

Two other rules: don’t do this alone and make sure someone in the group is not in a trash bag so they can supervise with their eyes.
About the author

Edgar Rider has written Educational articles for Teach Magazine, Autism Daily Newscast, Modern Times Magazine, Teacher Plus and Life is An Episode.

He came up with Trash Bag Therapy after performing on stage as Bob Eager with a poem called Entity Known as Empty Space. He ripped through a trash bag on stage to cope with his emotional issues and realized it can help others dealing with the same challenges as well.