I’ve been thinking, actually struggling, a lot lately about what it means to “let go”.
This is a phrase of advice that that we hear often, usually when someone is being obsessive about a topic, or in reference to relationship issues, work problems, financial difficulties, weight struggles, etc.
If there is a real issue at stake, it doesn’t seem appropriate to throw a blanket over it and hope the blanket doesn’t blow away, however, there is a lot of wisdom in the notion of releasing the thoughts and need to control that which does not serve us. So how do we do this?
We all have different ways of doing things, and I’m all about action so here are my steps to letting go:
1. Awareness and clarity of what it is you need to let go. For example: a client of mine kept saying she needed to let go of her verbally combative relationship with her sister. Once we dug a little deeper, she discovered she needed to let go of the belief that she thinks her sister considers her irresponsible, not the relationship itself. Once she recognized the false belief she was holding onto, she could begin to interact with her sister differently.
2. Conceptualize what life would look, feel, and be like once you let go of that “thing”. Using the example from above, my client imagined being calm and non-reactionary; she would feel confident, relaxed, and strong. Her head would be held high, and her back straight.
3. Turn your concept into reality. Begin to engage in activities and think the thoughts that support you feeling and looking the way you conceptualized in step two. My client began to do breath work to relax, posted mantras in her home and office that empowered her, and reminded herself to walk with her head held high. Her new way of “being” in the world reminded her of who she truly is when she is able to let go.
4. Practice. Often what we are working to let go of likes to come back unannounced. It may feel frustrating but it is ok. New behaviors and thought processes take time to be incorporated into our lives. This is the time to use meditation and visualization to facilitate the process. Be gentle with yourself and allow yourself to feel, maybe fall off track, and gently get back to “letting go”.
Letting go Meditation Imagery: Imagine your issue. Feel that issue. Now imagine that issue to be a color. Imagine that color to be a bouquet of balloons. Hold the balloons. Now one by one let the balloons go. Watch the balloons rise into the open sky until you have no balloons left in your hand. Now notice what you are feeling and where you are feeling it in your body.
Arielle is a life and wellness coach helping people heal from their stress through Mind-body Medicine. To learn more about her services and to get more insight into mind-body wellness, visit her website, www.relishlifela.com