Letting Go can be a very challenging, difficult and emotional process, AND, it can be very freeing and create much joy and delight!
One of the most frequently asked questions I am asked is, “How do I let go of things?” It is often followed by the comment, “It’s so hard!” This inquiry prompted me to co-create my first workshop in 1999 called, “Letting Go & Lightening Up—In Your Mind, Your Home, Your Office & Your Life” (which was the foundation for my book, Conscious Order: Clear Your Mind, Leave Clutter Behind).
What I’ve discovered over the years is that when we have lots of clutter in our spaces and our life, there is often lots of clutter in the spaces of our mind.
It is much easier to let go of anything
when we have a clear mind.
When we clear out the clutter in our mind (“I should be able to do this,” “I’m too busy,” “It’s too hard,” etc.), we can think more clearly, have a better idea of what is really important to us, and decide more easily what to let go of and what to keep. The first half of Conscious Order is devoted to identifying and clearing out the mental clutter.
If you want to let go of anything, here are a few tips:
Make a list of the things that are most important to you, such as Family, Friends, Health, Career, and/or Order, Simplicity, Harmony, Peace, Joy, Freedom. Choose from these “key words” (or choose others) and, as you are deciding to keep or let go of something, ask, for example, “Does this support my desire for greater freedom and simplicity?” or “Is this in alignment with what is most important to me?” To make it even more powerful, ask, “Does releasing this allow me more time to focus on what is most important?”
Acknowledge anything you have already released, whatever that might be. It could be something you donated to a local charity, gave to a neighbor, put in recycling or tossed in the trash. It could be a habit you changed or a negative thought you stopped or even a relationship that no longer worked for you. Large or small, by acknowledging these things, you have changed your focus from what you haven’t done to what you have done.
Because what we focus on increases, why not focus on the letting go? Acknowledge anything you have released, even if it was a long time ago. And, every time you let go of something else, remember to acknowledge that. (I encourage my students and clients to exclaim, “Yay me!” It’s a profound way to get in the habit of acknowledgement.)
Another thing I’ve discovered is,
By taking time to acknowledge anything positive,
you begin to think more positively
and then realize, “I can do this!”
Make appointments with yourself. Block out a period of time on a regular basis to focus on letting go–one space at a time, one thought at a time, even one relationship at a time. If someone calls and asks you to do something, simply say, “No, I have an appointment,” and keep it!
Select “Destinations “ for things you want to let go of. This could be favorite non-profits or shelters, family or friends, consignment shops, etc. It is much easier to pass something on if you know it’s going to be valued and appreciated by someone else. You might ask, “Could someone else use this more than I?”
Pay attention to what you are thinking and saying to yourself. If you keep telling yourself, “It’s too hard,” it’s probably going to continue to be difficult. Change that wording to “It’s getting easier to let go.” Change “I can’t do this,” to, “I can do this!” Let go of thoughts and words that drain you and make you feel bad. Change to thoughts and words that lift you up and make you feel good. Then you’re more likely to be successful and you will feel lighter!
In any given moment, you can choose a different thought,
a different word, a different perspective, a different attitude.
Practice affirmations—affirming in the present tense something you want to happen in the future, as if it is already happening. When you combine this practice with gratitude, it becomes even more powerful. Play around with this and enjoy the end results!
I am grateful that letting go is getting easier.
I am grateful that I choose to make time
to do the things that are most important to me.
And so it is!