The Power of Letting Go.........

A story for reflection….. Two Buddhist Monks were on a journey and they approached a rough and raging river. On the river bank they saw a young woman who was clearly in need of help to cross to the other side of the river. The junior monk walked straight past her without giving it a thought and crossed the river. The senior monk offered to help the woman and carried her across the river. Once across they parted ways and the two monks continued on their journey. As the journey continued, the senior monk could see that the junior monk had something of concern on his mind, and asked what was wrong. The junior monk replied, "As monks we are debarred from touching a woman, how could you then carry that woman on your shoulders?"  The senior monk replied, "I left the woman a long time ago when I put her down at the river bank, however, you seem to be carrying her still."
This story shows the importance of detachment.
The things we hold onto, bear grudges or perhaps feel angry and hurt about cloud our mind and prevent us from being the best we can be. Letting go usually involves some form of forgiveness or acceptance – whether it’s for yourself, someone else, a situation or even an unknown third party. The irony is that whatever you’re holding onto, it’s probably hurting or bothering you much more than it does anyone else. Letting go doesn’t mean we condone a situation or behavior, it’s about lightening our load. When we let go of whatever is bothering us we set ourselves free and get to reclaim that energy for ourselves. You don’t need to know how to let go, you just need to be willing. You can’t change the past, but you can learn from it and change how you feel going forwards. Remember - whatever you find it hardest to let go of is probably what you need to let go of the most.

There is tremendous power in letting go because it clears your mind and takes away distractions so you can concentrate on living in the present. Letting go of all the things that drain your mind and body allows you to gain more focus and confidence in yourself to achieve your goals. Improving your present moment improves your future as well and will bring more happiness, joy and real freedom into your life..

Below is an exercise that will help you gain some clarity of the things you need to let go off.  Just listing what you need to let go of here will raise your level of awareness and you’ll naturally begin to loosen your grip on the things that do not serve you.  So ask yourself and write down what you’re holding onto, what slows you down, what riles you up and anything that gets in the way of you being the best you can be!

  •   What do I need to let go of?    How I benefit by holding on?
Now look at this list and imagine letting go of everything on this list. How does it make you feel?

What have you learned about yourself from doing this exercise?

If you need to let go of something you’ve done, simply ask, “What do I need that will allow me to let this go?” Perhaps you need to make some kind of apology or find a meaningful way to make it up to yourself or someone else. While we can’t change the past, we can make peace in the present and learn from it. Also ask yourself, “What do I gain by holding on to this?” Perhaps by holding on to resentments, anger, hurt, you don’t need to accept your part in the situation, or perhaps it stops you from feeling how hurt you really were, maybe you get to stay in ‘the right’ or avoid dealing with someone.

By becoming aware of the things that do not serve your life now will allow you to start the process of letting go and redirecting your energy toward what empowers you and brings you joy.

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