Have you ever been so angry at a situation that you felt at a complete loss to take action? I have. For years, I was stuck behind walls that I had created for myself. I eventually realized that what was holding me down were the experiences that I had yet to let go of. So if you find yourself in a similar situation, here is what I’ve learned about how to let go.
I was twenty-nine when a boyfriend told me it was strange that I didn’t share my food when we went out. At the time, I thought, “Why would I want to share my food? I ordered it so I could enjoy it.” My philosophy? What was mine was mine, and yours was yours. Thinking about it, though, I realized that I kept more than just my peas and carrots to myself.
To others, it was strange that as a young kid, I would often sit for hours with only the thoughts in my head. Over time, I saw how easy it was to become consumed by my thoughts and feelings, letting them take over. A lot of the back and forth wasn’t so nice, and I could get mad at myself for almost anything. So what I want to address is how NOT to get stuck in uneasy emotions.
When I looked at other women’s accomplishments, I felt worse about myself. Criticizing was my defense mechanism. I think that this is a phenomenon that many of us can relate to. It’s what we’ve been taught to do. But think for a minute about what our lives would look and feel like if instead, we were supportive – if we celebrated instead of lamented.
It happens like that – one minute I can be self-assured, and then the next, someone says something that makes me question my capabilities, or else something happens where I feel like I should’ve done better than I had. And because it’s so easy for us to go from high to low, what’s most important is to figure out ways to boost ourselves back up. Here are some techniques.
I’ve heard a lot of people verbally beating themselves up. “I just feel stupid for doing that” or “I feel like I’ve made some poor decisions.” We want to honor all of the feelings that we feel, but it’s healthy if we let ourselves off the hook for feeling whatever it is we’re feeling. Letting yourself be as you are is hard, but it’s also possible. Here are some techniques to help you through.
There are challenges to putting self-care into practice, the biggest one probably being time. But you do have control over how you use it. Because when we care for ourselves, the greater purpose attached to that is the well-being of ourselves and others. And since even small acts of self-care can be revolutionary, don’t be afraid to take some time for you.
Have you ever wanted to say something to your partner, friend, or family member, but just couldn’t get the words out? You may be scared to say what you feel because feeling anything at all is scary. But what’s far more frightening is if you don’t say anything. It’s your responsibility to break the cycle. So here are some ideas if you’re itching to begin.
In second grade, I learned that I was academically slower to learn than most. This was the first time that I remember feeling stupid, but it wasn’t the last. Maybe you’ve experienced something similar. Maybe at some point in your life, you just felt somehow less than everybody else, somehow inadequate. You’re not alone. The good news is that we can change our relationship to this feeling.
Nobody wants to be a quitter. It’s a concept ingrained into the fabric of our social being. But what if my work environment is making me irritable, anxious, and unhealthy? Is it “wrong” to quit then? In some contexts, quitting is actually the best option. Leaving can be the end of something, sure. But it can also be the beginning of something else.