The last week has been really introspective for me.
I’m realizing more and more that I’ve fallen back into these old habits – the ones I thought I’d left behind long ago.
- Negative self talk
- Fear of making mistakes
- Fear of success
- Waiting for someone else to give me permission
- Criticism and judgment
I’ve pretended for a bit that I ditched them permanently. As if I’d packed them up in a suitcase, driven it out to the middle of a desert, and left it all in my dust as I sped into the promise of a new day, new life, new me.
But the truth is, every time I drove to that desert and ditched that junk, I ended up driving back there to check on it … and taking it back home with me.
So this year, I’m imagining it differently. This year, it’s about letting go.
I’m not packing these things up and ditching them, never to be seen again. That’s unrealistic.
(If I’m being honest, they are, at this point, a part of me.)
This time it will be a slow and kind, gentle and consistent process of detachment. One in which I unravel the tightness of my bond with these things, and allow them to just exist.
Because if I’m always trying to fight them, reject them, and ditch them, I’m actually fighting, rejecting and ditching my Self. And I do NOT want to do that anymore.
This time I’ll look at the things I used to pack up in a suitcase and hope to ditch and just see them for what they are. No need to reject and abandon them.
I’m going to let their presence just be. I want to understand that they’re part of me without needing to use them for the person I don’t want to be anymore.
I will let them float. Fly. Land where they need to.
And as I let them go, I won’t wonder or fear where they’ll end up … because if they’re a part of me, I know they’re always going to be around.
It’s kind of interesting to imagine it this way. My inner adversarial, rejecting and disapproving experience is completely disarmed when I do. And I can feel a relief that comes from not needing to fight, judge, or work against my Self.
I wonder if it sounds like I’m giving up, but it actually feels like the opposite. I’m finding a sense of empowerment as I imagine letting go. I think it’s because it’s a different type of choice, one which works with the reality of who I am rather than fights against it. It feels like I’m not in constant criticism mode, and actually being nicer to myself.
Ironic. Embracing the things that I felt I needed to reject about myself has actually made me feel better.
I think that’s because I’m practicing acceptance. And I know from my work and my life that we can’t change anything until we accept it for what it is.
So somehow I’m creating this new equation for the year ahead:
Letting go ≄ giving up.
Letting go = relief. Relief = acceptance. Acceptance = change.
I’m not going to fight with my Self anymore. I’m going to let these parts of me be known to, and accepted by, me. I’ll acknowledge what they did for me and how they helped me become who I am.
And I’ll thank them for their service, and offer them freedom to retire if they’re ready.
I think I’ll find relief in that letting go, and space for change.
Space for me to evolve.
I invite you to do the same. What parts of you, or habits you’re always fighting, can you begin to accept? What can you embrace in a spirit of gratitude for what they once did for you? What can you begin to understand that you don’t have to work against, but instead allow to just be?
What could you let go of with slow and kind, gentle and consistent efforts?
What would change if you did?