“By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try. The world is beyond winning.” ~Lao Tzu
A few years ago, I went through a major personal crisis. Actually, it was a bunch of crises, and they all hit me at the same time.
I took a series of pay cuts at my job. I owned two properties, neither of which I could sell or afford. And my fiancé of four years dumped me.
Over the phone.
Life does that to us sometimes. It doesn’t just throw us a curve ball; it throws a whole bucket of fastballs at the same time.
It was the single most stressful, emotional time of my life. But it taught me some valuable lessons.
On a recent trip to Chicago, I overheard a friend who is a bankruptcy attorney talking to another person about how people sometimes just need to learn how to let go of things that make them sad, the things that are causing them stress, like a home they can’t afford.
I learned that the hard way a few years ago when I finally had to call the bank and tell them I couldn’t afford to make the payments on my home anymore. It was a tough call to make; one that I knew would wreck my credit for several years.
I’d called them before to try and work out a deal to lower my interest rate and get my payments down just a little. But they claimed they couldn’t. I fretted over it for weeks, stressing myself out the whole time.
Finally, I made the call and told them they’d received my last payment.
Despite the fact that I knew my credit was going to be pretty bad for a while, I felt amazingly relieved. I had just taken one of my biggest causes of stress and tossed it out the window with one phone call.
Sure, I would need to find another place to live, but that wouldn’t be a problem. I could handle that.
I started noticing other things in my life I needed to learn how to let go of. Cutting out negative friends was a huge one. But as I began to gently remove those people from my life, stress just seemed to melt away.
I realized that my fiancé had been a point of stress. She lived in Maryland, I in Tennessee. The struggle to find a job up there and keep up the long distance relationship had been a huge point of stress.
While the loss of the relationship hurt, I no longer had to work so hard at making it go.
All of this stuff came full circle recently when a buddy of mine called and asked for advice about several stressful things going on in his life. He was going to lose a property, possibly some people from his life, and wasn’t making as much money as he thought he needed.
I related my story to him. Then, I told him sometimes we have to learn how to let go of things, hit the reset button, and start over.
Does it suck for a little while? You bet.
But it gets better.
And as time moves you along, you begin to appreciate the things that happened and how awesome your life is.
Remember, we all choose the things that cause us stress in life. We either make the choice to keep them there or we can make the choice to let them go.
The choice is up to you.
What will you choose?
How about you? Are you holding on to something you need to learn how to let go? Join the conversation in the comment section below:)