While I am not at all proficient in the art of letting things go, I am ridiculously far away from the way I used to be. When something bothered me say, a year or two ago, it would eat at me for hours and days and sometimes weeks. Anything else during that time took a back seat to whatever got me in a tizzy, and I sometimes got physically sick because of it.
I call this post “The Idiot’s Guide to Letting Things Go” because I will be the first to admit that I can sometimes be a huge idiot. Really, I can. This is not a disparaging remark intended to subvert my intelligence, but when I think about how I used to let things drive me to the brink of near insanity, focusing on what others may or may not be doing or saying or how some situation didn’t go the way I planned, I feel like an idiot. Because in doing that, in allowing things outside of my realm of control to usurp my joy, I was being unfaithful to myself. I was allowing my real person, a happy, giving, driven adult woman, to act like a preteen. And I cannot do that anymore.
When I get bothered by something, it doesn’t just roll off my shoulders. I still go through the spiral of negative thoughts and I can definitely dwell on things that I really should not dwell on. But I am getting much better at not allowing those thoughts to consume me the way they used to, which is huge.
I don’t have a formula, or a magic phrase to help with letting things go, but I can tell you the only thing that is working for me. Ready? It’s super simple and seems like there’s no way it can work, but I’m telling you, if it’s working for me, it can totally work for you.
You want to be happy.
Right? Don’t you? I know I do.
And when we allow negativity to take over our minds, we are basically telling ourselves that we don’t deserve happiness. And how ridiculous is that?
Now I know it’s easier said than done, believe me, I do. But if you try and try and try to accept that you want happiness, it will eventually click, and you will realize how much weight negativity has but also how much power you have to push it away.
Here is an example of something that I’ve gone through recently:
Thing A that I wanted desperately to happen did not happen. I was really upset and gave myself some time to live in the space of disappointment. At one point, I realized how I was suddenly ruining my entire day, and by proximity, my family’s. I was grouchy, and obsessing, and for something that I had no power to change. But I did have power, and after allowing myself to be miserable for a bit, I was able to feel how awful that felt. I wanted to be happy. And I was able to at least start the process of getting there. So I released Thing A into the world and moved on. I found a Thing B to focus on.
I hope this proves helpful for some of you. I really truly understand how awful it is to breathe in negativity but I can see the other side, and I feel like it’s such an important choice to make.