This article is an extract of chapter #5 in Karl Moore’s best-selling book, ‘The 18 Rules of Happiness.
“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 the winning.” – Lao Tzu
Emotions are the things that make us human.
When we cry, we’re experiencing emotion. When we’re fearful, we’re experiencing emotion. Whenever we’re angry, upset, passionate, greedy, scared – we’re experiencing emotion.
But sometimes emotions need reining in!
They cause us not to make that fantastic speech at the company conference, because we’re scared of the platform. They stop us making up with long-gone friends, because we’re still maddened with anger. They cause us to stay in relationships that damage us, because we’re still emotionally addicted to the misshapen void the relationship fills.
Emotions aren’t always good for you. You are NOT your emotions.
Emotions are just things that happen, and which you can (and should) control.
Sure, that sounds easy. But here’s the thing: it actually really is easy.
The best way to let go of our troublesome emotions, the emotions that are holding us back from happiness, is to discover the art of releasing.
So, what is releasing?
Releasing is the ability to realize that you are desperately “gripping” onto emotions in your life. You treat them as if they’re “you.” It’s about realizing you can let go of them, unclench your fist around them, just by making a simple decision.
How can you start releasing?
The simplest method is just to go through your life, recognizing where emotions are holding you up. Are you angry about your home-life situation? Your working hours? That incident you just had, with the rude guy at the grocery store?
Bring that issue or situation to the forefront of your mind. Connect with the emotion.
Then, ask yourself: “Can I let this go?”
Can you let it go? Just for this moment? Could you release this emotion?
Breathe out, and answer honestly with either “Yes” or “No.” Either answer is absolutely fine.
If you can let it go, then do it. Really feel yourself letting go. Feel yourself releasing, unclenching, relaxing, detaching. It should feel something like when a doctor calls to tell you those worrying tests have come back all clear: an immediate release of worry and tension.
And if you can’t let go right now, don’t stress it. Give yourself permission to hold onto it some more. It’s your decision.
How does that feel? If the emotion still has charge, simply repeat the process until you feel better – or until you feel like stopping.
Remember, letting go doesn’t mean you “forgive” the person at the grocery store, or you “allow” that kind of behavior. It just means that you release the negative emotion inside of you.
By releasing negative emotions, you’ll not only enjoy much more freedom in your life – you’ll also become more emotionally stable and less stressed too.
So, learn to let go – and you will be happy.
It will look like this: Learn to Let Go