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There is no shortage of ways that we prevent ourselves from living incredible lives.
We hold on so tightly to our habitual ways, but what if instead, we shook things up and truly learned to let go? Letting go for 30 days can be life changing if we’re willing to step outside of our comfort zone.
What exactly should we let go of?
For 30 days, let go of the way it has always been. When we think about changing things in our daily schedule, it might feel that there is not much we can possibly change. We can start with small things like eating something different for lunch at the office. Try Mediterranean today, perhaps. Think about the areas of life that seem dull or challenging. Explore different ways to improve them, but be sure not to set limitations. Explore everything that comes up, even if it sounds silly. Consider a change of career. Try connecting with your children in a different way. Be curious. Ask questions. Act as if life is a blank slate for 30 days and watch where it takes you.
For 30 days, let go of the need for validation. Validation can fill a void that we experience when we are wronged in some way. It can fill us up when we have insecurities (we all have them). By clinging to the need for these types of validation, we are holding onto the experience of being wronged instead of moving past it. We all say we don’t want drama in our lives, but are we really creating that experience for ourselves? By letting go of this need for validation, we can skip the negative experiences and move to the next experience. Looking for validation before we take a leap with something new creates a false sense of confidence. By letting go of validation, we can push through our insecurities. When we do this, we simultaneously create an authentic confidence that is stronger than any false confidence derived from someone else’s validation.
For 30 days, let go of social norms. The tendency toward conforming to social norms has come to be its own social norm! Social norms can range from being as casual as what your friends are doing and where all of the couples vacation, to more formal norms like religion or laws. By letting go of social norms, we bring back the art of independent thought. Think about what you would be doing if you were truly doing what you wanted. For the next 30 days, do things differently. Designate a day during the week for yourself. If you have children, arrange for someone else to be with them on that day, and do something new. Attempt new activities like art, poetry, music, hiking, salsa dancing, or yoga. Read books on new subjects. Explore a move to another geographic area. Daydream about new possibilities and play the “what if” game. Letting go of social norms sparks creativity and promotes our individuality. By allowing ourselves to let go of social norms for 30 days, imagine where we could land another 30 days from there.
For 30 days, let go of what people think. If we would ask 100 people what they think about something in our lives, we would get 100 different answers. The reason we would get so many different answers is simply because of the variety of life experiences of the people who were asked. Knowledge and life experience are the hallmark of individual perspective. When we let go of what others think, this opens us up to different choices and different experiences. We have this life to live the way we want it, so let’s do something cool with it. Letting go of what others think brings us closer to who we are at our core.
For 30 days, let go of expectations of others. Expectation can cause unnecessary stress for both the one who places the expectation, as well as the person whom expectation is placed upon. Expectations are often woven through our relationships without us even realizing it. Expectations can feel limiting, they can set us up for disappointment, and they can actually create superficial interactions with important people in our lives. By letting go of expectations, we experience genuine interaction, and disappointment dissolves (but only if you really let go). We can be pleasantly surprised by others when we lift our expectations. We may also see another side that may not feel so pleasant. We may come to know someone else’s intention does not quite align with ours, once we get down to the truth. In the end, even this outcome frees us up to make decisions that are a better fit for our lives. By letting go, we loosen the grip we have on controlling the outcome. It can be exciting to learn more about ourselves and to experience surprising new outcomes!