Letting go is a powerful action, and a first step in making a change, if change is what you want. I have observed that people often spend a good amount of time wishing things were different than what they are: Good way to ruin an otherwise perfectly good day. Expectations are a desire for something or someone to be different than what actually is. Expectations can be laden with fear, and an incubator for resentment. Letting go has an inverse relationship with expectation. Letting go starts the process of something better.
Sometimes, some days I don’t feel the way I want to feel. I realize that may happen. I’m only human, and limited by this circumstance. Okay. BUT..and here’s the big but…I can change how I feel. I can change what I think. I can change what I do. It’s good to know that, and it is powerful. I am a firm believer in the idea that we attract what we feel, what we say, think and do…whatever it is we put out there. So, since I believe what I believe, then I have an obligation to myself to do what I have to do to keep myself in the most positive and constructive and peaceful place possible.
Believing is an act of faith. Faith requires practice. It doesn’t matter who you are. The great saints, prophets, spiritualists all have or had a spiritual practice, encouraged it, and spoke of its necessity in word and deed. It is simple: People of great faith practice faith. However, practicing faith may not always be so simple. Faith demands courage in the face of fear and uncertainty. Uncertainty and fear are hardcore companions
Everyone has felt fear. Healthy fear keeps us safe and out of harm’s way. Fear gone awry results in anxiety and panic and creates dis-ease. Although some people are described as fearless…I believe that how they deal with their fear is the defining factor. I think “fearless” people can sometimes be thrill seekers. They can seek out danger and love the challenge, because of the rush of facing it head on. I suppose and have heard that this makes them feel “alive”. I get it.
Granted jumping off cliffs, skydiving and climbing Mt. Everest isn’t for everybody. But, life has a lot more challenges than that. Everyday life demands a lot from everyday heroes. There are bills to pay; traffic to fight; mouths to feed; jobs to do….etc. And there are lots of events that can rock you to the core. Either way, it is up to us to handle it and deal with it and ultimately to accept whatever comes our way. How we do this; how we approach any given situation makes all the difference. What we ultimately choose to do creates a chain of events, and attracts different things to us.
The thing about fear is that the more you face it, the weaker its power. We learn how it works. We learn what to do. We practice faith. We improve as do our lives. We face fear one moment at a time. We face anything one moment at a time.
Fear is not a bad emotion: It has its purpose. Fear can tell us a lot about ourselves, and develops our character. The things (people, places, circumstances) that cause us to worry or doubt tell you something about ourselves. Practice facing your fears. Understand them. Feel the fear, and walk through it. Walk past it. Figure out how you get to the other side, and learn from it. Life is a great teacher. Each experience has a potential treasure trove of information and self-knowledge. Greater self-awareness makes you stronger and smarter and wiser. What scares us prepares us. Heroes conquer fear…everyday heroes included.
Back to the original theme of letting go. With experience comes wisdom…we hope. The best definition I know of wisdom is “knowing when to let go and when not to let go.” Letting go of fear has power in it. Letting go of fear leads us to peace. Listen to your fear. Determine if it is healthy or unhealthy. Ask yourself, “Why do I need this fear?” . “What am I actually afraid of?”. “If I stay with this fear, what is the payoff?”. “If I face it what will I gain?”. “If I don’t, what will I lose?”. “What could I do instead of feeling afraid?”. “What could I do to manage it or improve the situation? “.
I suggest practicing faith. I suggest starting your day with the expectation that life is beautiful. I suggest that you notice what is going right today versus not-so-right. I suggest that you start your day with the simple belief that you are here to enjoy this day, and be grateful that you are here. I suggest learning acceptance. Believe me…that takes practice.
Nearly two years ago I met a new friend. We are no longer new friends. We are now old friends. Nearly two years ago when I met this friend she decided to send me a daily text message in the morning to check on me. More accurately, she is a loving and generous person, and this is exactly the kind of thing she would do. I had been going through a rough patch. Without fail, her message would say to enjoy my day and always ended with, “Love you.” Nearly two years later I still get a text message every morning telling me in one way or another to enjoy this day, and each message still ends with “Love you.”. I admit that some days I don’t feel it 100%, but every day for nearly two years I send a response reflecting this message back to my friend, and then proceed to work on bringing her words and mine to life just for today. I am so grateful for this friend and for these messages, because I am keenly aware of what a difference this daily gesture has made in my life. I am also keenly aware of how much I would miss it.
So, I work to let go of whatever obstacles get in the way of me enjoying the day. You can too. Letting go is a daily act. We let go of little things, big things and medium-sized things. It’s all part of life. It can be done and done well with some effort, knowledge, love and little help from your friends.
Enjoy this beautiful day!
Love you, Vivian