I am going to mostly going to be referencing ‘someone’ instead of ‘something’ through this blog. Basically, I suck at people because I am riddled with social anxiety and I overthink everything, which turns into scenes of disarray with many of my relationships. This is not to blame myself, but to be mindful of my part. Those who are meant to stay with me, get me.
When is it time to let go?
Whether it’s your job, your friend, your lover, an item- anything. This can be a difficult decision. It isn’t always so easy to tell the difference between a situation needing some TLC and being a total loss.
A few things to consider-
Are you actively trying with nothing in return?
Has this situation caused you undue negative feelings?
Have you considered the situation from a rational standpoint vs an emotional standpoint?
If it’s a relationship, have you expressed your feelings and concerns with the other person/people involved?
Are you being over sensitive? I loathe the term over sensitive because my mother tells me I am too sensitive about things a lot. A lot of the time I really am being too sensitive and she’s just doing her best not to set off my emotional explosions, I just don’t want to be told that I am making it worse on myself vs her saying, yeah that person is a dick.
I get super self-conscious and I always, always feel like an obligation or an afterthought to people. This makes it extremely easy for me to collect negative emotions that I regularly have to let go of.
When it’s an item or a job it can be slightly easier to address because often an item can be tossed, a job can be replaced. Does it sound odd that I am referring to items? It really isn’t. Think about that awful gift you got a few years back that you get fired up about every time you look at it, but just don’t have the heart to toss because you’re worried about the gift giver’s feelings. It may sound silly but if you’re anything like me, letting go of even the smallest irritant helps A LOT!
This whole letting go biz gets messy when you start to look at your relationships. As we go through life we accumulate many relationships. We start with our parents, sometimes siblings, grandparents and the like. These are the worst relationships to let go of, but sometimes the easiest to come to terms with the level of toxicity they bring to your life. It’s painstakingly obvious that a close family member shouldn’t be taking advantage of you, be unsupportive or abusive towards you. We don’t get to choose our parents and family so when they piss us off it can be easy to say you’re done or over it in the moment, but it’s rare that you will cut ties. It’s easy to spot an alcoholic parent who drags you across the floor spewing hate from their mouths about how awful you are. It is even easier to say you don’t need that shit in your life. But, we can’t divorce our parents. Worse, there isn’t a magic wand that erases that kind of thing from your life’s timeline, it’s your job to do the work to let go and release it. Not everyone is blessed in the sibling department but they can be highly abusive and toxic as well. There isn’t a paper to sign that banishes them from our lives, either.
As we get older, we make friends and acquaintances. I’m a firm believer that we all have many soul mates of different kinds. We need different people at different times in our lives. So, what happens when someone who was so dear to you at one time in your life loses their way or stops being that person for you? Maybe you have outgrown them and you feel like being around them brings you down to a place you have left behind. Do we let go?
Our love life can get the messiest. Most of us aren’t lucky enough to marry our high school sweethearts which means we come with baggage that’s carried over from past relationships. It doesn’t have to be that way, if we could just let go. But what happens when your marriage is tapped out. You feel completely defeated and not IN love anymore. DO you fight or walk away? This is something you must find within yourself. Can you find the strength to let go of all the negative emotions that have turned your perfect relationship into a shit show of fights and hate to begin to let love in again? Sometimes the best thing to do is let go completely.
My marriage has been through the ringer. My husband and I almost got a divorce around this time last year. We have been through a lot in our short marriage and we were both at our wits end. We loved each other but didn’t feel like we were in love anymore. We were passing ships in the night, roommates, co-parents- everything but lovers and friends. Luckily, we worked everything out and we are stronger than we have ever been. This isn’t due to one specific thing but I can genuinely say that we both let go of a lot of things that had been festering for years. Things came up from even our first relationship back when I was in high school. It was cathartic to go through this with him. I love that he can put my ass right in my place by pointing out my usual methods of trying to run away. I need that. I need him. However, what I didn’t need was the constant fight every time we were together. Now that I’m not picking at every move he makes and filled with resentment for the things we haven’t accomplished yet, I actually like the guy again. Bless him for sticking by my crazy side.
The wonderful thing about letting go is that it can give you a euphoric feeling that you are getting a new lease on life. Don’t be afraid. Personally, I like to first let go of the emotional side. If I still feel like I can’t shake the feelings the person or situation brings me, then it is time to consider completely cutting ties permanently.
Sometimes we have things that make us feel so good but are so bad for us. It could be something simple like drinking soda too much, drugs, cutting, infidelity, shopping too much…you get the idea. These are the hardest things to let go of for me. I have such a low self-esteem that I can easily slip into the self-talk that goes something like this- “one more soda isn’t going to hurt, look at me. The damage is done”, “I deserve to buy this item because I have had a crap week and I don’t care if it means we aren’t going to have as much money”, “ no one will know if I relapse and cut this one time, I can keep a secret”. I am pretty skilled at justifying my destructive behaviors. I went through a really hard time after Claire was born. Between harboring guilt about her CLAP, my BPD and PPD I was a mess and turned to alcohol. It was too easy to say, I earned this drink. I can drink two boxes of wine in a week because look at the mess I have made. I didn’t realize I was only making it worse. It was a difficult combination of emotions to let go of but I did it.
The hard thing about letting go is that it can feel like we are giving up. Should we try harder? Are we not giving someone or something our very best, and that’s why it stops feeling right? IS IT ME?! That is usually what I tell myself, it’s me. I’m the reason my work doesn’t get as much recognition as the next person, I’m the reason my marriage almost ended. I. Am. To. Blame. I release that one every single time I do Full Moon Releases. I rationally know that the world isn’t out to get me and that life isn’t a competition, but I live in my emotional mind so these things rarely penetrate my thoughts. However, I don’t hesitate to point these things out to other people. I’m very much a “do as I say, not as I do” person.
We are expected to fight, to hold on, to keep trying. There is this unspoken expectancy in our society to hold on dearly to our childhood friends. We are supposed to respect our parental units. You should consider yourself lucky to have a job at all. Why are you unhappy with your house when so many are homeless? We MUST fight to the very bloody end to make everything work, otherwise you can consider yourself a failure.
Pardon my French, but fuck that.
I for one am done fighting. This is not to say that I won’t fight for those who fight for me, and anyone who knows me, knows that I will blast through any obstacle that comes my way with my family & businesses. But I am beyond done pretending in relationships. I don’t care what your label in my life is, if you can’t be supportive and active in my life- mmmmbye! I am done fighting for lost causes.
I don’t give up easily and I am not afraid of hard work. These are admirable qualities and something I can say I love about myself. Saying I love anything about myself isn’t something that’s always been so easy for me. Something I don’t love so much about myself? I rarely let things go. I have such a hard time letting go of things. Twenty something years ago, some girl played a prank on me in school. This ‘prank’ involved her and a couple other kids pretending one of the cute boys liked me and wanted to “go out” (what a ridiculous thing to think about in elementary school). He was supposed to meet me after school to walk me home and hold hands. I waited for him. I still remember the heat in my cheeks while I sat sadly on the swings, alone. I silently cried the whole way home that day, gathered myself at the corner of my block and walked in the door as if nothing had ever happened. I still tear up over it, I’m wiping my eyes now. Obviously, that’s one I should let go of. Easy choice there, right? It certainly says a lot more about them than it does me. For years I blamed myself. You may ask yourself how I could ever think that was my fault. Because I let myself believe that if I had just been nicer to this girl, she wouldn’t have targeted me and exposed my emotions. It is absolutely the small and big things in life that mold us into who we are. This instance in school made a huge impact on my life and how I looked at relationships with men, because from that day forward I felt inadequate. I hope that awful little girl doesn’t live in the grown woman who lives today. I hope she figured out how to let go and has forgiven herself for what she did to me and so many other little girls, if she even realizes what she did. I digress, this post isn’t about bullying. Though, I do feel that this story plays an important part in how I matured into someone with the resistance to letting go of toxic relationships because that feeling of inadequacy lead to me often make choices because I didn’t ever feel like I deserved more.
I dated a guy for months and months even though he was a train wreck. He worked for my uncle and I was bartending as a side gig while getting my spa business up and running. This guy would walk straight to the bar after work to keep an eye on me, drink up half of my pay and tips, get fall down drunk and be a total nuisance the whole time. I would drag his drunken ass home, and wonder what in the hell I was doing. Every morning my uncle would be in the parking lot waiting for this guy to roll out of bed, expecting me to get this grown man ready like I do my child. It was ridiculous. Why did I stay? Because I have never felt good enough for men. Probably part of the reason I was in a lesbian relationship for so long, even though that one was the most toxic of them all! This nightmare has followed me into my 30’s and has spread from how I think males look at me into insecurities in many areas of my life like my businesses. From this little prank (and other things too, I can’t blame everything on that one thing but it really has bled into so much more than a sad girl on the playground) I began to compare myself to this girl and girls like her. I still do it to this day but I’d like to think I am a little more refined in my self-deprecating actions, not caring so much about my looks but my successes. I compare myself to other business owners, artists, writers and moms all the time. How many likes did she get? NO WAY! And the cycle continues. This is a topic for another blog, for sure.
Not everything is so cut and dry though. What if this someone you need to let go of is someone you love? What if you still want them in your life so much but no matter how much you reach out, it’s simply not reciprocated? I think we all hit a point or points in our lives that we have friends slip away. Sometimes its mutual, we all grow up (ugh) and accumulate responsibilities (ugh) that keep us from being as social as we once were. These are not the people you can go months and months without talking to but the second you’re together it’s like you were never apart. I’m talking about the ones who just blow you off. They’re not checking in. They’re not dropping a line to say heyyyyy! I’m busy but I love you! Let. That. Shit Go. Those are the ones who are bleeding you dry.
What about those family members that are beyond judgmental of every move you make? Maybe you have a cousin who thinks their shit doesn’t stink and they just love to rub your nose in it. The sister who is constantly comparing journeys. The aunt who loves to point out your faults. The step-parent who always had it worse. The mom who thinks you should just ‘toughen up’. These are all people you may totally want to cut ties with, but you tend to hold onto this idea of what you had hoped they would be.
Here’s the thing, for the most part, you are all you’ve got! We all have that partner, that family member, that friend who plays the role as the rocks in our lives. When it comes down to it though, when all the stars fade from the sky, it’s just you. It’s just me.
We must take care of ourselves and sometimes that means leaving others behind. It’s ok, you’ll be ok, I’ll be ok.
So why is it that we continuously put ourselves in these toxic situations? Why do we feel the need to work ourselves to death on something that’s already gone?
Letting go seems to easily equate to failure, doesn’t it?
But what if we give letting go a new perspective?
I let go of ______ because the situation was no longer cohesive to my personal growth.
Seems polite and practical when you put it that way, doesn’t it?
We get so wrapped up in the aftermath.
What if I hurt their feelings?
What if my new job sucks worse than this job?
What if I can’t make it on my own?
Honestly, you are breeding more misery for yourself by staying or holding on. Who says you should put everyone else before yourself? I think that is a little near sighted. WE are who we must live with for our forever. WE are who we are fighting for every day. I don’t know about you but I am surely not busting my ass every day for Joe Blow down the street. So why is it that we feel its ok to put their feelings first? I am not sure why society has bred us to think that everyone else is more important than we, ourselves are. I mean, I am someone’s someone else, so why can’t I be my own someone else?
Often, we are afraid that we will lose part of ourselves by saying goodbye to someone in our lives. Who am I without Brenda from junior year? Who am I if I am not useful to these staple people of my life?
How will I refill that piece of self, once I let go of this sense of self?
I promise you, you will be far better without them. You will be whole again. You won’t continue to feel that dull dagger to the heart when your message has obviously been seen but not responded to. Shout out to the interwebs for making to so much easier for my anxiety to fall gently over me like an autumn leaf from a tree to the ground. Again, I am off topic.
Releasing and letting go isn’t equal to losing or failing. Releasing and letting go is simply making room for your soul to shine without being dulled by the negative emotions you have hoarded through life. We should also keep in mind that there are ways to let go without saying goodbye. We all have people in our lives that we love but don’t really like. Some we even like but just don’t understand or they don’t understand us. These times its beneficial to let go of your side of the situation. Let go of the anxiety, hurt, irritation or whatever emotion you experience because of these people. Stop allowing their presence or shortcomings have such a powerful hold over you. When I know that I have to deal with these kinds of people in my life I make sure to carry protective crystals, ground & sage myself, and give myself a good pep talk with some affirmations. I also do Full Moon Releases about certain ones almost every time I do releases.
Before anything can be done about letting these emotions go it’s essential to accept them and completely feel them. I like to dissect the situation and figure out why the emotions happen. The deeper I go the better off I am in the long run. It’s better for me to get every answer I can get so that I can avoid revisiting the situation. Sometimes it takes me pissing and moaning about it for a couple weeks, sometimes I figure it out easily and it’s a quick process. Most of the time I dwell and hold onto it for way longer than I need to. I’m working on that.