People always tell you to let go of something or someone that causes you pain and promise that you will then feel better. It might even be true but most often they do not tell you how to actually start the process of LETTING GO!
This is a beautiful song that for me is deeply connected to letting go! You might enjoy listening while reading…
So here is a list of things that can help to initiate that process. Letting go is never easy, especially if it is letting go of a person you love.
1. If it is about letting go of a person you may ask yourself what is the difference when this person is a part of your life or if this person is not in your life any longer – a bit like a pro and con list. There are always (or most of the time) good reasons why you cannot be with that certain person any longer.
2. Creating a physical distance between you and the person or situation that is causing you pain can speed up the process of letting go. Learning how to let go of someone you love becomes so much more difficult when you are constantly reminded of them or see them.
3. Stay away from social media! Though social media is a great way to stay in touch with family and friends, it’s the worst thing when you are going through a breakup. Don’t torture yourself by looking at photos or posts of the person you need to let go of. It is also not helpful seeing other seemingly happy couples, which can open the wounds all over again.
4. Allow yourself to grieve and let the negative emotions flow freely. If you try to shut out the sadness, the grief, the disappointment, the anger and pain you can get stuck in them instead of giving yourself the chance of eventually working through them.
5. At the same time it is beneficial to create a positive mindset or a mantra to counter the painful thoughts that are sure to arise. This can help you reframe the thoughts you have and in time can support you in getting un-stuck and moving forward again.
6. This one sounds easier than it actually is. Focus on yourself! When you think about the person who caused you pain, bring yourself back to the present moment and focus on something that you’re grateful for or something that brings you joy and peace.
7. Accept that the other person may not give you an explanation or even apologise to you. Waiting for that explanation or apology from the person who hurt you will significantly slow down the process of letting go and healing. If you’re experiencing hurt and pain, it’s important you take care of your own healing, which may mean accepting that the person who hurt you will not give you that explanation or apologize to give you the closure you may hope for. And if you can, forgive!
8. Be very gentle and kind with yourself. Often our first response, when we are not able to let go of a painful situation or of a beloved person, we tend to criticise or even blame ourselves. Don’t go down that road and show yourself some compassion and kindness. Treat yourself with the same kindness as you would a friend in the same or similar situation.
9. Talk to someone you can really trust. If you keep everything bottled up inside, you will get you stuck and this can eventually turn into anxiety and even depression. Talk to a supportive family member or a trustworthy friend. If you prefer, you can work with a coach or therapist and talk about how you feel and let them accompany in your time of need. It’s important to give yourself permission to talk about it as often as necessary.
10. Surrounding yourself with people who fill you up can carry you through a lot of pain. Allow yourself to lean on loved ones and their support. This ensures that you are not isolated and reminds you of the good that is in your life.
11. And last but not least, be patient and give yourself time. Even if you follow all the steps of letting go of someone, it takes time to heal. Grieving is normal and you need to allow yourself the necessary amount of time to feel your emotions and work through them. Show yourself kindness and don’t feel guilty if you cannot easily get over someone and need more time than others or even yourself may initially grant you.
To summ it all up:
To let go of the past is painful and you need to make the conscious decision to take back control of the situation and of your life. Of course this can take time and some practice. Be gentle with yourself and celebrate every small victory you achieve along the way to healing.
The key to letting go of a relationship or a situation is facing what has happened, accepting that you can’t change it and then moving on. Once you’re able to move on and appreciate the growth that came from the relationship or situation, you may even enjoy the good memories you made during that time and eventually begin writing your new story.
But there is one thing you should always take into consideration. There is no right or wrong way of letting go. Everyone is different and has their own way of coping with pain and loss. This very incomplete list of suggestions on how to possibly deal with these is there to give you ideas, examples and perhaps inspiration on ways to deal with the task of letting go of something or someone or at least to get started. If you do ever get stuck, never ever hesitate to ask for help – we all need help once in a while!
I would like to close with a quote I have used before (it just fits in so wonderfully that I could not resist):
“I can’t say when you’ll get love or how you’ll find it or even promise that you will. I can only say you are worthy of it and that it’s never too much to ask for it and that it’s not crazy to fear you’ll never have it again, even though your fears are probably wrong. Love is our essential nutrient. Without it, life has little meaning. It’s the best thing we have to give and the most valuable thing we receive. It’s worthy of all the hullabaloo.”