The Challenges of Letting Go

I love the fall season. It is nature’s way of letting go of that which no longer serves. The trees shed their leaves. The grass gives up its color. And nature itself seems to look inward to its roots. There is no struggle. It is full of ease.

We can learn a great deal from nature at this time of year. To trust that it is okay to let go. To know that what we need will come to us in time. To breathe deeply and slowly and look inward.

Yet sadly, we often end up like a dog with a bone, fighting tooth and nail to hang onto something. It might be your relationship or it might be your job. It could be your money or it could be your fame. These are the things that are usually very apparent. Everybody can see what you’re up to. Sometimes, you can even see it yourself.

However, we frequently (and often subconsciously) cling to something that can harm us much worse than the obvious. We just won’t let go of our notions, our beliefs, or our habits.

I’m not talking about ideals or faith, but about the stories that we make up and tell ourselves. Stories about ourselves, about our world, about the people in it. And much like a child that believes in both Santa Claus and the Boogie-Man, we take these made-up stories for cold hard fact.

This topic alone could fill my next book, but for today, I want to focus on just one aspect. I call it our “world view” story. Stories would be more accurate, as we each have many. What’s yours?

Here’s a prime example of one that came up only yesterday as I was discussing the Law of Attraction with Chris Tomasso, a colleague of mine.

Chris expressed his deeply seated belief that there is something inherently wrong in selling his products. Can you imagine how detrimental this could be in allowing him to ever thrive in his business?!?

Chris happens to be a published author and he writes about the Law of Attraction as well as other intriguing topics. He also knows full well that his books provide tremendous value to their readers. And finally, he wants to make his living as a writer, doing things that he loves to do.

This is not a unique scenario by any means. There are plenty of creators (actors, singers, musicians, writers, etc.) that would love to make a living at their craft, BUT also feel that “selling” is somehow taboo, or contradictory to their work. The term “starving artist” isn’t common nomenclature in those worlds without reason.

Fortunately for Chris, he has an awareness of his internal dichotomy. He knows that in order for him to truly achieve his desires, he will need to dismantle his underlying beliefs about “selling” his work. He knows that he has to explore and discover not only “what” his actual thoughts are (i.e. “I hate to bother people”, or “the audience will just have to find me”), but WHY he thinks and believes that way.

Once he recognizes the thoughts and their origin, he should be able to go to work at eradicating them. This will open him up to a whole new approach to his personal marketing, which will be fantastic, because he has a lot to offer.

What beliefs or underlying thoughts are you holding onto that really don’t serve you?

Our stories come in many shapes, sizes and colors. Are you prone to bad relationships? Do you struggle with weight issues or other addictive behavior?

Here are some of the most prominent areas where clinging gets us in trouble:

  • Relationships
  • Obesity
  • Alcoholism
  • Financial issues
  • Stress disorders
  • Sexual dysfunction

Of course, there are many others as well. Sometimes they are simple little issues that show up as looking like the bigger issue. Even in Chris’s example, you can see how his seemingly trivial belief of “selling is bad” (and I paraphrase here) could lead to financial woes.

I had a friend that lived most of her life with the belief that “sex equals love”. This created a whole string of bad relationships for her, and even left her in a challenging situation when she finally found the right one. No matter how many ways he showered her with love, she was only able to really take it in when it was sexual in context.

It was a tremendous breakthrough for her when she was able to dismantle her story and replace it with one that served who she really was. It improved her level of communication not just with her partner, but within all of her circles. It even freed her from a tremendous deal of stress.

What stories are you clinging to that no longer serve who you are today? What are you willing to let go of this fall? I’d love to hear your comments.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css=”.vc_custom_1414274768720{margin-top: -1px !important;margin-bottom: -1px !important;padding-top: -1px !important;padding-bottom: -1px !important;}”][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_facebook type=”standard”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_googleplus annotation=”inline”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css=”.vc_custom_1414275620683{margin-top: -1px !important;margin-bottom: -1px !important;}”][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_tweetmeme type=”horizontal”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_pinterest][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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2 thoughts on “The Challenges of Letting Go

  1. This is great stuff Michael! I like how you liken the concept of letting go of beliefs to the natural process of trees letting go of their leaves. Put this way, it feels “normal” for lack of a better word.

    It’s easy to think, if you have a limiting belief, that there is something wrong with you (in fact that itself is limiting!). This, like an addict who won’t recognize they have a problem, impedes progress.

    It’s cliche to say, but awareness is the first step in the journey towards getting the things that you want. Added to that, it’s actually a natural process of growth, and think understanding that takes the sting out of it a bit. Thanks so much for this inspiring post (and speaking highly of me.)

    • My pleasure, Chris. I couldn’t help but write about it after our conversation, since it just seemed to be so timely and relevant to The Art of Forgetting.

      Of course, “forgetting” makes it sound so simple, though evidence often proves otherwise. I’d love to see more feedback here on this post as you tackle that belief.

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