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The Art of Letting Go

It’s human nature to attach ourselves to things. People, places, ideas – we grasp at them in the hope of finding happiness. Trying to manipulate each one to fit into our lives just the way we had imagined.

But the reality is, this attachment is the cause of our suffering. This clinging to ourselves and an idealised life, sets the path for disappointment and dissonance. We find ourselves in situations we can’t control, meeting people with different perspectives and fighting our own egos in the face of adversity.

‘You can only lose what you cling to.’
— Buddha

Letting go is an art form. For the more spiritual or those that lean towards the ‘being’ side, it may come more easily, but for the doers it is incredibly difficult to give up control and the desire to try and ‘fix’ things. So learning takes time and commitment.

Here are 6 useful words to aid in your learning –

1. ACCEPTANCE
If you find yourself in a toxic situation or conversation, first remove yourself from it and take a moment to connect with your breath and inner self. Acknowledge the anger and difficulty that has been raised, and then try to accept it for what it is. Absorb the turmoil and let it pass.

2. ATTACHMENT
Be aware of the whirlwind of answers, feelings and physical responses you are experiencing and try to let them go without attaching to them. Be aware of your own nature to attach to things and thoughts, ideals and expectations and separate yourself from them. Remember Buddha’s words ‘you can only lose what you cling to‘.

3. CONTROL 
The art of letting go requires giving up the desire to control people, situations and outcomes. To focus your energy elsewhere, on the things that you can control. Like what to have for dinner!

4. EGO
Letting go requires giving up the need to always be right. To let go of the constant grasping at ourselves and to acknowledge our own ego. To be selfless and rise above our own justification.

5. PERSPECTIVE
Reminding ourselves that everyone has a different perspective, is a great learning curve in the art of letting go. Take these two different perspectives of money for example – ‘Money makes the world go round’ and ‘Money can’t buy you happiness’  – neither are right or wrong, but they are very different ways to view money.  Shifting your own perspective and respecting other perspectives (not shunning them because they aren’t your own) is vital in the art of letting go.

6. FAITH
Finally, having faith is a very calming force in the art of letting go. Letting things play out and not trying to control the outcome, believing that everything is as it should be, brings a great sense of peace and calm.

 

 

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