Reflection is necessary. I’ve always seemed to have deep reflections right before/after life milestones and around holidays. As I approach another birthday, my reflection is starting a little earlier this year.
Have you ever held on to something that you KNEW wasn’t good for you, but you are still holding on?
I certainly have and although I’m usually pretty good at this stage in my life, from time to time, toxic thoughts creep up.
In the past, my “poison of choice” was rehearsing the script over and over again. Something would trigger a memory (a song, a smell, or a place) and I would fall down a rabbit hole of thoughts before I knew it. All of the questions would rush in….all the doubt would wash over me like a wave and if I allowed myself, it would alter my mood and/or my day.
If I allowed myself to linger, I would then beat myself up about it. The question would surface…why can’t I just let it all go? Then, I would remember, that it was all to serve as reminder and an opportunity to be grateful that I’m no longer there.
However, that is not all of our stories, here are some tips if you find yourself wondering how to “let it go”, here are some tips:
Empty your mind. Did you know that you are in charge of your own thoughts? Try meditating and being still and allowing those thoughts to fall out of your mind and then control what you allow back in.
If you have not done this before, I admit, it won’t be easy, especially when your thoughts are tied to stress or stressful situations. Meditation is a practice, just like prayer is. Try emptying your mind when you aren’t stressed and develop this skill over time.
Visualize. There are many great visualization techniques to help you let go of your troubles.
Here are a few:
Imagine the thing that is bothering you, and then visualize placing it in a balloon and watching it float away
In your head, write down the issue and then imagine yourself crumpling it up and throwing it away
Picture the thing that is bothering you, then change the color in your mind to black and white. Then shrink it down so it is very small. Then imagine it very far away.
This may sound and/or feel strange but it can help when those troubling and sometimes toxic thoughts seep back in.
Write. Writing is a powerful way of getting thoughts out of your head. The simplest way to do this is to take out some paper and let whatever is in your head flow out. Don’t edit, don’t beat yourself up for what you are feeling, and don’t try to be correct. Just write.
Another method is to write an in-depth letter to the person or situation that is troubling you (yes, you can write a letter to abstract concepts or inanimate objects).
Ritualize. You can physicalize the letting go process by performing a ritual. Don’t be put off by the word “ritual,” there is nothing spiritual or cultish about it. A ritual is just a consistent procedure you regularly follow. By turning your letting go process into a ritual, you can train your mind to automatically let things go once the ritual starts.
For example, you can write down the thing that is bothering you on a piece of paper and then burn it in a bowl or fireplace. In the past, I’ve written something down and then going someplace and buried it.
The act of doing something physical represent letting something go is very powerful. Using rituals may sound strange, but just try it, even if it makes you feel uncomfortable. It may just help on your path to letting it go.
Feel free to leave your comments and share this with others that may be struggling with “letting it all go”.
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