Thursday Thought #137: Letting Go

“Life is a balance between holding on and letting go.” – Rumi

We often are encouraged to let go of aspects of our lives that are no longer serving us. These can be relationships, professional situations or habits, or even aspects of our own identity.

But when the advice-givers advise us to let go and move on, they often don’t give enough credence to the pain and mourning that comes from letting go and disconnecting.

If you’re letting go of something, the fact is that that something was a part of your life for a reason. And regardless of whether or not that reason was valid, it still comprised an aspect of your identity.

And just like saying goodbye to an old friend or loved one, these old habits and narratives need to be acknowledged and sometimes even mourned before we can move on and welcome new identities.

This difficulty in letting go can certainly prevent people from reaching transformation. The mind is often conditioned to stay with what’s familiar because familiarity breeds comfort.

Without our old patterns and habits, there’s no safety net. There’s nothing to fall back on if we face fear or shame.

So we have to mind the gap. We have to mind the absence and sometimes mourn the part of ourselves that will never be there again, so that we may fully and wholly welcome the new part that will take its place.

In order to happily and compassionately integrate a new aspect, new relationship, new habit that will serve us for the future, we must honor what was.

Honor what was, and we can welcome what will be.