Letting go is both the easiest and hardest thing we face in almost every minute of the day.
It is the hardest when we have to make the conscious decision to let go of the thoughts that cause us to feel the emotions that throw us out of balance.
While this task of choosing to forgive, forget, or simply taking a deep breath to smile at life instead of losing control seems difficult, if we approach it with grace and just do it, we find ourselves with a true sense of strength and light that everyone else around us will also feel.
Most people deal with their emotions in hard times in either one of three ways: suppression (consciously done) or repression (unconscious), expression, or escape.
While you may feel these are effective, they are only internally inflating the negative energy inside of you to be dealt with on another day, being so open you seem to run on an endless supply of negative thoughts that arise faster then your mind can speak them and only damage those around you, or require enormous amounts of energy to keep us distracted from the feeling we’ve chosen not to acknowledge by remaining unconscious.
The fact that society makes these faulty methods of “coping” the socially acceptable options continues to perplex me, as I know I have often tried to use them when I felt desperate as well…but they do us no benefit emotionally or physically, whatsoever.
We can let go of those mindsets right here and now.
Rather than focusing and trying to rationalize our million thoughts that occur when we are upset, it is better to focus on what the feeling behind them is and draw all your awareness to that. No judgement, not trying to change and or rationalize the whys, just sit with it.
Close your eyes, breathe oxygen directly where you feel that emotion and tension present in your body and let it come and just quickly as it comes, try to feel it deflate with every exhale…(sometimes this is best done with help from a friend when emotions are exceptionally overwhelming).
The reason for most negative reactions, thoughts, or feelings is often a sense of loss of control, which for most of us is the most stressful thing that can arise. For instance, when someone we love dies, we get dumped, we lose our job, we get lost, we forget something important after leaving the house, we break our phone—these are all situations where the control is beyond us.
Viktor Frankl was a prisoner of a Nazi concentration camp who used his experience to come out a stronger person on the inside rather than beaten down, bruised, and defeated, to match his physical body. Frankl said, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any set of given circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
I have continually grown up hearing a quote as equally powerful from my mother. At first I was reluctantly refusing to really listen and absorb the power behind her shared wisdom out of my pride and ego telling me to block out everything other than the string of awful thoughts playing on a loop in my mind. But had I really heard her the light bulb would have gone off much sooner when she repeated:
“[…] life is 10 percent what happens to you and 90 percent how you react to it.” ~ Charles R. Swindoll
So make reactions positive and you will always be the winner, no matter what people or life can throw at you.
Emotions are always contagious, so let’s remember to spread love instead of poison.
Author: Morgan Huff
Editor: Renée Picard
Image: kl_paige at flickr