“Letting Go” is a great cliché and heard more often now than ever before. But really what is “Letting Go”?
I was driving a long distance in a very strong wind recently and it was difficult to keep the car in the right lane. I had to grip the steering wheel very tightly and even though I was alternating the hand with the tight grip, by the end of the journey it was difficult to move my fingers and release the grip that I had on the steering wheel. My hands and muscles were set in place, and it was hard to let go. And then I thought about “Letting Go”.
Physically, you know when you are holding onto objects, or when your grip is too firm. Have you noticed how hard it is to write easily and fluently when holding a pen too tightly? It’s easy to realize that the harder and longer you hold onto the object, the more difficult it is to release your grasp. In fact you know that you can’t hold on to it forever and you will have to put it down sooner or later.
But what about emotions, habits, behavior patterns, attachments or feelings? Can it be the same with other things that you can’t see and may not be aware of?
Just like your fingers on the steering wheel, after holding on to these things for a period of time, your heart and mind tightens and closes. It can be very hard to open them again while you are holding on. This sense of restriction also brings with it fear, doubt, negativity, skepticism and a need for self-protection that prevents you from being open to new opportunities and the joy they may bring.
Your heart and mind are like a parachute – they do not have to be open all of the time, however they do need to have the ability to be opened when needed.
Before you can begin to let go, it’s useful to know what it is you need to let go of. To know what you need to let go of, you need to know what you are holding on to.
So what sort of things can you hold on to? Here are just a few things that came to mind as I was writing. There are so many more that you may think of, so if you do, I invite you to email them to me (email@example.com).
Roadblocks – feeling that you are continually coming up against a brick wall when you are trying to achieve something. These can be put in front of you for a reason. If you feel continually thwarted by roadblocks, ask yourself if what you are trying to do is right for you. Perhaps the roadblocks are suggesting that this is not right and to find an alternative. Try going around the roadblock and finding another way or another goal, rather than allowing it to stop you. There’s no point in continually beating your head against a brick wall.
Dreams – perhaps it was an actual dream that you had, or a conscious dream of what you would like to achieve. It’s important to dream big as it is the first step towards making something happen. However, dreams can often be given to you as guidance or to offer another way of looking at something. If you are experiencing continual roadblocks and frustration trying to achieve your dream, ask yourself if it is still relevant and if not, you may want to find a new one.
Being Used – it’s easy to slip into a situation of giving too much if you want to help others. However, despite wanting to help (or needing approval), you can feel that other people are asking too much of you, and begin feeling resentful. You may even expect others to “do the right thing” and set your boundaries for you. You need to decide what is right for you and teach people how to treat you.
Relationships – the only person that you have control over is yourself. People come and go in your life, usually for a reason. Often, once the purpose has been fulfilled either they leave or you leave. Much grief can be caused by trying to hold onto someone or something that has served its purpose. Like food that is past its Use-By date.
Situations – An old and very familiar saying is “God grant me the Courage to change the things I can, the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change and the Wisdom to know the difference”. Step back and take a good look at any situation that is causing you discomfort and ask yourself which category it is in. To change something may mean changing your role in it as you cannot change other people. If things cannot be changed, do you want to accept it? If so, you may need to change your perception of it to something positive. If you have ever had a Kinesiology session, you will know that it is a really liberating way of identifying underlying belief patterns and helping to clear them so that you can begin to see things differently. And as this happens, often those around you begin to readjust in different ways.
Sense of responsibility – it is usually very clear who and what you need to be responsible for. However if something doesn’t feel right, you may want to ask yourself if your sense of responsibility for someone else is appropriate for the person and their stage of development. By being over-protective you can be depriving others of learning their own life lessons.
Need for approval – there is no question about it, the need for approval must go. It gives others the power to approve or acknowledge you as they see fit, determining how you feel about yourself. Once you realize that this need stems from your old “caveman physiology” (if he didn’t fit in with the tribe he was cast out and did not survive) you know that it is no longer necessary. It’s impossible for everyone to approve of you. If you expect at least 50% of the people that you come into contact with to disagree with you and know that it is OK, it will be easier to deal with disapproval or rejection.
Guilt – the past can’t be changed. Let the person involved know how you feel, be humble and apologise if appropriate, be aware of what you can do differently in the future, and remember that you probably did the best that you could at the time. There are often lessons that come with the experience that caused the guilt, so learn from them. Feeling guilty, or allowing someone else to “make you” feel guilty, is giving them a lot of power over you. This can’t go on forever, so set yourself free.
Worry – like guilt, if it is in the past it can’t be changed, if it is in the future it hasn’t happened yet. By the time you get there you may be a different person and the circumstances may be completely different. Bring your mind home to the present moment, take a few deep breaths, notice everything that you can see, hear, feel, touch and smell and then notice the sense of relaxation that you will experience.
Grief – there is no time limit where grief is concerned and no-one can be told that it’s “time to get over it”. Accept that it is a process that is unique for each person and there are no shortcuts. Love and support from others helps to integrate the grief and rebuild your strength, so ask for help when you need it and just do your best to keep moving forward.
Resentment and bitterness – Nelson Mandela said “As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison.” Holding on to old grudges and blame is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to get sick. To your bodymindspirit, a negative emotion is like a toxic substance and if held for long enough, it will begin to affect you physically. If you find it hard to forgive, don’t. Forgiveness can be over-rated, and very difficult at times depending upon the circumstances, so just find the lesson whatever it may be, learn from it and move on.
Blame – to gain maximum power, take responsibility for whatever happens in your Universe. Are you at Cause or Effect? If you are on the Effect side of the scales, then it’s always someone else’s fault which carries with it the assumption that you are powerless and can’t do anything about it. If you are on the Cause side of the scales, then you can do something about it. If you can’t change the circumstances, it may help to change your perception of it. This can be difficult to do so Keren can help with some very useful NLP techniques.
Fear – what if? Sometimes the things that you fear never eventuate. Sometimes the situation has changed by the time you get there. What is the worst that can happen and will you survive? Have you ever looked back on what seemed to be a dreadful event, and then realized that you are actually better off in some way? Perhaps the next job or relationship might be better.
Circumstances – in nature, not many things last forever. Are you holding on to a set of circumstances that are no longer right for you? This may be true for you in employment, relationships, status or possessions. Maybe it is time for you to move on, but you do not see the signs. If it goes on for too long, something may happen that forces a change despite your protests. And then as you reflect, years later, you realize that the change needed to happen and you are better off for it.
And so it is with emotions and thoughts The harder and longer you hold on to them, just like gripping the steering wheel during a long journey, the harder it is to release them.
The first step is to recognise what you do not need to hold on to anymore and then ask yourself some questions. What purpose does it serve to continue to hold on to this? What will happen if you don’t have it any more? What can it be replaced with?
Perhaps there is a different way of looking at the situation? A dear friend shared this little list about Letting Go with me ….
- To let go means accepting “I can’t do it for someone else” even though you still care
- To let go is the realization I can’t control another, without cutting myself off
- To let go means knowing that the outcome is not in my hands and it is not within my control
- To let go is to allow learning from natural consequences
- To let go is to make the most of myself before trying to change or blame another
- To let go is to care “about” rather than to care “for”
- To let go is to allow another to be a human being, without judgement
- To let go is allow others to affect their own destinies, without trying to arranging all the outcomes
- To let go is to permit another to face reality, without being protective
- To let go is to accept rather than deny
- To let go is to search my own shortcomings and correct them, before criticizing others
- To let go is to take each day as it comes, and cherish myself in it without adjyouting everything to my desires
- To let go is to become what I dream I can be instead of criticizing or regulating others
- To let go is to grow and live for the future rather than regret the past
- To let go is to love more and fear less
- To let go is to accept responsibility for my actions without looking for someone to blame
Perhaps there is something there that is meaningful for you.
You may have recognized one or two things that you have been holding on to. It can be difficult to know what you are holding on to – and even more difficult knowing how to let it go. Old reactions, behavior patterns, genetic traits, feelings and beliefs can be held deeply in the unconscious mind, DNA, muscles and cellular structure of your body.
The true magic of Kinesiology becomes apparent as you establish a trusting relationship with your practitioner. Over a series of sessions, deeply held layers are gently identified and cleared, giving you a sense of freedom and clarity, and a joyous path forward. Finding a practitioner you are comfortable with and who is right for you is very important as your work together will be life-changing, motivating and fulfilling.
Call Keren on 0409 706727 or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to try Kinesiology.