The Importance of Letting Go

Here lately I feel like the cosmos has been trying to beat me over the head with a lesson.

"You have to let go of what you have to make room for what you want."

I read that so long ago that I can't remember now where it was or who wrote it. It struck me then, and I wrote it on a sticky note and put it on my fridge.  Apparently, though, it's time to revisit the concept. 

It's shown up in teeny, simple places lately. A couple of weeks ago I deviated from my tried and true Starbucks drink and tried a little something new. I like what I like, so taking that chance on not getting what I knew I would enjoy was a bit of a thing for me. But something great happened. I found something I liked more. Had I not loosened my death grip on the sugar-free mocha, I would have never found the (cheaper) glory of a little bit of cinnamon shaken into my latte. 

Also, how many times have you boiled eggs in your life? If you're a good southern girl who has been to many a family reunion or church event, I'd dare say it's nigh unto hundreds of times. Okay, honest now, how many times have you cursed those eggs because they didn't peel right? Got forbid they be fresh eggs when you boiled them! I'm going to bet almost as many times as you've boiled eggs. We keep boiling them, though, because that's what we've always done because that's what Mama always did. We're doing it all wrong. Steam those jokers! Steam them for twelve to fifteen minutes, and I'll be damned if the shell doesn't just pull right off. 

How many things would be easier if we just let go of what we've always done to look for better ways? What great things are we missing out on because we can't turn loose of what we think is good enough? 

As nice as these little things are, the impact of this philosophy upon the larger parts of life is more dramatic. 

When I first got out of residency, I got what I thought was a wonderful job. I made great money. I worked the shift I wanted as many times as I wanted. I had an amazing team of coworkers around me, and I saw a metric boat load of interesting things. I was miserable. But I had all the right things, so I clamped my fist around them and held on tight. Only by prying my fingers away from that job did I free myself to find an even better one where I wasn't miserable.

I could go on, but I won't bore you with more examples. Just remember, two things cannot physically occupy the same space. In order for something better to come along, we have to loosen our grip on what is already there.



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