“Letting go” has become a theme in my life the past few years. Whether it is getting rid of old emotions, toxic relationships, harmful habits, stress, or negativity, I have been faced with the realization to surrender. Every week, I offer this as an intention to my yoga students. There are so many things in our lives that we do not need or do not serve us, so why hold on to them? Clinching onto the unneeded leads to more stress, tension, illness, confusion, frustration, and heartache.
There are a few ways to help me practice this concept, and I will share them with you all in hopes that you can release the old too!
First, sharing is extremely helpful! You can share by writing in blogs or letters, therapy, and/or talking with those around you. It is important to feel safe and be able to open up to those who will listen without judgement. Share with someone who will listen without reacting, talking about their own experiences, or trying to belittle your thoughts and emotions. How you feel is valid and deserves compassion.
Other beneficial art is writing. Journaling has helped me so much through the years. As I have been cleaning out a lot of spaces around the house, I have found many journals and diaries. I used to write down my experiences and feelings on a daily basis, and I miss that. Looking back on my writings, I realize how much I held inside, and how I truly have really transformed into a young woman. When we write down our private thoughts and emotions, we can learn to let go of what does not teach us to grow. I have gotten back into journaling, especially with the roller coaster that is pregnancy.
Find an exercise that you enjoy. For years I overworked myself running, spinning, swimming, and wasting a lot of time in the gym. Then I completely quit all activity in fear of falling back into hurtful habits. Within the past 6 years, I have solely practiced yoga and gone for walks or hikes. By finding what I truly like, “exercise” does not feel like a chore. I long for the moments on my yoga mat or walking and love how I feel during the exercise and even more relieved after!
Spend time in nature. This can be as little as looking out the window, watching the rain, going for a walk, or going to a park. In Nashville, I was always very pleased with how many green areas there were to explore. When I had a moment in between teaching yoga classes or before picking up the kids to babysit, I would stop by a park. Sometimes I would just sit and feel the wind, watch the clouds, meditate, or practice a little yoga. Being under the beautiful sky and absorbing the gifts that God has given us, we realize how fleeting our issues are and appreciate the peace that nature provides.
Love on your pets, adopt a new pet, or go somewhere where you can spend time with animals. Animals are majestic and teach us how to live simply. They teach us patience, how to be unselfish, unconditional love, and so, so much more. Animal therapy is real!
These are just a few of my favorite ways to learn about letting go. Of course prayer and meditation always help us realize our strength, self-love, and forgiveness, too. Practice some form of surrender on a daily basis and your peace of mind will blossom. You will see your life change and find yourself along the way.