The Practice of Letting Go

The Practice of Letting Go

Dreams, goals and ambitions are a great thing. But why is it, that too many times these dreams and goals tear us back down, instead of helping us move forward? When setting a goal, when visioning your dream job, dream city  to live in, dream – anything, we expect to move closer towards it at some point. Oh and there it is, probably one of the most evil things: expectations.

Instead of just visioning something, we automatically expect things to turn out a certain way, people to act in a certain way. We cannot surrender to whatever is coming our way, but try to control it – in order to, and let’s be honest here: get what we want and the way we want it. A quick hello to our major ego!

Simply by writing it down, I gain more clarity. It really does make sense: our detachment, our urge and desire to control whatever goes on around us, our misleading belief that surrendering means being weak, is the real problem. The problem has never been what the actual situation is, but how we choose to deal with it. The rational me knows that I am fooling myself, we all are fooling ourselves sometimes. I understand that many of the negative feelings I am experiencing arise from being too attached, too focused on a certain outcome, having too high expectations and from the feeling that I am somehow given the responsibility to control what is happening in my life. So, I know, I need to let go. For some reason though, I can’t get it right. I can’t let go of too many things, feelings, beliefs. I am stuck.

What’s so difficult about letting go

At this point, I cannot really answer this myself. If only I knew what exactly it is that keeps me stuck in this destruction of clinging on to everything around me. But I guess, that’s a start: it is a personal thing. You might cling on to your misleading beliefs, feelings and emotions, because you fear what might happen next, or maybe because you think being strong and confident equals being in charge and being in control. Maybe things have always been a certain way and you are used to it, so why change it? Or maybe it is a little bit of everything… I found this great article by The Huffington Post on exactly that. It has certainly helped me to reflect upon what might be going on.

Begin somewhere. Anywhere.

I have chosen to start writing about it. Until now, I have never really been into journaling. I cannot even tell you why because I love the idea of a journal. I feel, however, that letting go is a major difficulty for me and as I said, it keeps me stuck. Stuck in a place I no longer want to be. I want to free myself. A journal helps me to reflect on the day and especially on the moments of attachment. It is almost like telling your friend about something and while doing so, you realize what has gone wrong.

Also, I make it part of my daily practice to remind myself that I do have power and control, I can take on responsibility but only for me. Whatever way I feel is my decision, whatever weight I put upon a situation, an argument, a fight even, is up to me. If I want to be responsible for something, why not start with my own feelings, thoughts and actions. You will notice, this is difficult enough, so why would we even bother to think that well, we should be  the ones taking on control and responsibility of other people’s actions?