The Art of Letting Go

Do you get tired of people saying to you, “Well, just let go of it/him/her”? Or argue with yourself that it’s time to let go, but you don’t know how to?

I want to share with you one of my favorite stories told by my spiritual teacher Matthew when he was three years into his Buddhist studies with his teacher Bhante G.

They were driving along in the car one day, while Matthew was telling Bhante another one of his troubled times stories about his Mom. Bhante had heard many of these stories by this point from Matthew.

When Matthew stopped to take a breath, Bhante turned to him, with direct eyes, and said, “Are you DONE?” And Matthew said, “Oh, ya, I’m done.” Bhante said with intensity, “NO, are you DONE with your stories about your Mom?”

Meaning… Are you done living in the past. Are you done with your attachment to your story and your “poor me” identity?”  

Matthew looked at him wide eyed, and truly got what he was saying. He let it sink in for awhile. Was he ready to let go of the story he had been telling for so long? Was he ready to begin seeing himself in a new light? The answer was yes.

When he told this story, it woke me up too, to the stories I had been telling myself (and others) for years about my dad, or my work, or my relationship or financial woes. 

I saw that the stories kept me stuck. Stuck in the same mindset. Stuck in the same way of thinking about life. And stuck with an attachment to being a certain way. I couldn’t move forward until I let go of the story line. 

You might know what I’m talking about – the story about how your Mom said this to you, or your Dad did that. Or perhaps that you never have enough money, or that your ex left you. It all seems so unfair, but until you honor the pain of what happened or what is, forgive, and leave behind being a “victim,” you will live your life from a place of disempowerment. 

I know it. I lived it. The before and the after. 

I highly recommend the after so that you can be free to be YOU. 

No more playing victim in your mind and in your life. Here’s how:

  1. Notice what story or stories you tell over and over again, or themes (like with a certain person involved) where you portray yourself as the victim – like someone or life has done you wrong.
  2. Take ownership of your story line. Ask yourself if all of it’s really true. Remember that your story is only one perspective.
  3. Now ask yourself if you’re ready to let go by not telling your story any more. Are you ready to drop it? If not, there’s more healing to be done – not by venting, but through counseling.
  4. If you are ready to drop it, tell your story one more time and say out loud, “I’m not interested in this story being my identity anymore. It’s still a part of my past, but I’m opening my heart to see it/them in a new way. And see me in a new way.”

By committing yourself to this act, you are taking a stand for YOU and creating what you desire in life instead of dragging along memories of the past or beliefs that no longer serve you. 

This is living an empowered life. It’s totally available to you – right now.  Are you DONE telling the same old story over and over? What do you choose today?

Categories: Heart Centered Living

About the Author: Angela Patnode

My passion, my calling, is for you to be totally you. Through private coaching, in-depth retreats, and online group coaching programs, I help you tap into your intuition and clarify your desires and vision, I guide you to take active steps toward making your desires a reality.

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