As we move through life, we gradually become aware that we cannot carry everything by ourselves. We may reach points where we realize we are doing things we don’t really want to do, perhaps bending to the needs of others too much, and feeling like there is little time left for what we really want. At those points, depending on how long we wait to address what’s no longer working in our lives, we’re either ready to strategically let go, about to break, or we have completely broken and might find ourselves in a crying mess on the floor.
Whatever stage you’re at right now, if you’ve recently found that everything just feels like too much, but you’re not quite sure of what comes next, I have some good news. There is a simple way to move forward from here, and there is an art to letting go of what is no longer serving us. Once you reframe it and let go of any fear you have around it, the process can actually be really fun and satisfying.
So why do so many of us mess this part up?
The art of letting go is actually really simple, but we human beings get stuck because of our conditioning.
Many of us have been conditioned to believe that we have to hold onto things, because we need to be ‘responsible.’ We might have been raised to believe that no matter how shitty something feels, you ‘stick it out’ or ‘grow a thick skin;’ and once you’re done with it week to week, or day to day, you get a ‘reward.’ (Insert alcohol / drugs / food / whatever your reward poison might have been lately.)
We might also have some dodgy beliefs around being the caretaker, and we have to carry and be responsible for someone else’s (sometimes everybody’s) problems, issues, or tasks that they don’t pull their weight with.
Or maybe we’ve been raised to think practically, and haven’t taken the time to cultivate that deeper connection with ourselves and our intuition. Maybe we’re just not ready to trust, and so we feel we need to actually tighten our grip on the things that, perhaps, don’t serve us emotionally and spiritually; but help us on a practical level when it comes to survival.
Here’s the trouble we run into, when we don’t practice the art of letting go on a regular basis though ….
We can find ourselves feeling pretty shitty, tired, and drained.
We can find ourselves looking for a quick fix to release any pressure we’re feeling.
We can wind up totally disconnected from ourselves and our needs because we’ve spent so much time being concerned about everyone else’s.
We can get sick, and I mean really sick. (My heart bleeds for you if you, like I did, contract the flu EVERY single winter, have ever been hospitalised for Epstein Barr, or suffer with constant throat or stomach issues).
And when we take a step back, it seems crazy that we would keep trying to push forward, to ‘man-up,’ to keep going, even though we repeatedly know the consequences of our actions, right?
But if you’ve been pushing lately, and you’re feeling the longing inside you to let go, but you just can’t, I get it, I really do.
You’re scared, terrified even.
Because letting go, is fucking scary.
Letting go of what feels familiar, even though we know it doesn’t make us feel GOOD, is a tough thing to do, if all we’ve ever known is to ‘put up and shut up.’
Deciding to release any burdens we’ve been carrying although freeing, can suddenly feel like we’re free-falling; and we have no idea where to go or who to speak to next, because we’ve been so conditioned to carrying those burdens.
But here’s the magic part a lot of people miss in this beautiful art form.
When we let go, there is a moment, sometimes an extended period of time, when we can feel very alone.
When we choose to let go of what no longer works and align ourselves with what we want, we’re making a choice, a directive decision, that positions us in a completely different direction to the one we were in before. And this can sometimes feel not only alienating for us, but for those around us too. It can inspire people we love, but it can also shock them into questioning your motives or ideas, because they are suddenly aware they need to answer the questions that are surfacing in themselves.
But when you let go, even though it feels scary, you’re being brave.
You’re having the courage to walk into the room in between your past and your future, and sit, alone, with your own thoughts and dreams and fears.
Now THAT is scary. But it’s also the warrior’s path.
Because someone that has the courage to embrace uncertainty, and fear what might initially feel like loneliness, is truly brave, strong, inspiring, as a shining example to others of what it really takes to go after what you want.
So can you let go? Can you muster the strength and courage to shut the door, on what you KNOW you now no longer need, and be still with yourself for a moment, as you adjust to this new sensation of freedom?
Feels weird at first I know, but I encourage you to follow it.
Because guess what beautiful?
Life doesn’t have to be a struggle.
We were not put here to bend and break for other people.
Your dreams were not designed to sit inside you and wither away and die with your body.
It is, in actual fact, your BIRTH RIGHT, to be able to follow your heart, only do what feels GOOD, to feel FREE, abundant, powerful, strong, healthy and HAPPY.
And so please, for the sake of your beautiful future self, make a promise to your soul right now that no matter what, you will listen to yourself, you will trust yourself, and you will draw on your courage in each passing moment, to LET GO of what you no longer need in your life.