Holding On and Letting Go

Holding On and Letting Go

Last update: 05 November, 2015

Winning, losing, laughing, crying, embracing, closing one’s eyes in solitude… Life is an endless cycle, which flows, runs, and slips through our fingers despite how much we want to hold on to it. Like youth, in reality, life has an expiration date.

Life is a difficult balance between holding on and letting go. We aren’t taught this in school and it’s something we are often not prepared to handle. However, we go through life learning, quietly and without even realizing it. One of the many things we learn is that there are different types of loss in life.

Undoubtedly, you will remember those friends who moved away who you never saw again, and also the deaths of family members, or even pets, and the feeling of painful separation that accompanied those events.

Life weaves together its own balance of gain and loss, and from each there is something to learn.

Recognizing what is already here

The pain of loss is, in reality, only exists based on the love we have for what’s present in our lives. Nobody cries for something they do not love; nobody feels emptiness when something is lost that didn’t fill us in some way. Therefore, in this essential balance, it is necessary to first be able to recognize all that we consider valuable and precious.

Learn to value that which surrounds you, look into the eyes of those you love. Feel the simplicity of day to day life, and experience each moment as if it were your last.

Hot air balloon as a dandelion blowing away with a man blowing away too

None of us know how long our time in life will last, nor do we know that of others’ lives, so we must learn to live in and enjoy the present, the “here and now.”

Sometimes that is difficult, and there are times when our vision of ourselves is obscured by our worries and responsibilities. We fix our sight on the past or on our expectations for the future, displacing the present as if it did not exist, and neglecting to embrace the present moment. 

Occasionally, we can become sick with nostalgia. According to numerous psychiatrists, the human brain spends a lot of time remembering things. What is worse is that there are some people who become obsessive towards these thoughts and memories, and become blindly bound by yesterday’s failure, and mistakes of the past. 

What was lost yesterday no longer exists. Let it go, accept it. Yesterday’s pain is a door through which we pass to rediscover the person who we are today, someone more humble and wise, and who deserves to be happy again.

Close-up of water droplets on wires

Letting go to grow

“Letting go” is not only accepting a loss or a failure. It is also maturing, exchanging some ideas for new ones, growing internally, and even confronting our own values.

Sometimes we associate the idea of “letting go” with having to accept and move on from an emotional failure or personal loss, when in reality we practice this concept throughout our entire lives. To mature means to discover new ideas and face the words we have said in the past.

Picture of girl with roots growing our of her hair to make a garden

The child we once were had to dare to be the adolescent that pushed for more rights and freedoms. The adult we became later understood that there are not only freedoms, but also responsibilities. The person you were two years ago is not the same person you see in the mirror today. Experiential, emotional, and simple daily lessons cause you to move on from certain things and accept new ones.

As you see, we all “let go” of little things every day. Nevertheless, the biggest and most important things are the most painful. How could we let go of, in our hearts and minds, a person who filled our whole universe?   Feelings of emptiness hurt and make us sick, and create hollows in which we can lose ourselves if we are not able to detach ourselves from that which formed them.

Do not cling to something that causes you pain, and that does not work for you. Don’t insist on something that does not yield… let it go, and life will continue flowing and bringing you more options, more opportunities.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.