Let That Shit Go! Ahhhh, I said it; I finally said it. I have been waiting for a very long time to say that out loud. I’ve been so afraid of people ridiculing me for saying the word “shit” in print or out loud. I mean what would my mother say, what would my church members say, who would I offend by using profanity; blah, blah, blah? All these “what if’s” swarmed my brain like a thousand honeybees stinging my cerebral cortex. I sat for an entire day contemplating, “can I really say that?” The answer is “yes, I can.” The truth of the matter is, until I decided to really let that shit go and shoot strait from the hip I would cease to be authentic.
The first step to learning to let go is authenticity; being honest with yourself. One thing I want you to remember is, other people, no matter who they are will sit in your face and lie to you. They will tell you what you want to hear all day long, but the one person you should always count on to be honest with you, is you. One of the biggest mistakes we make is convincing ourselves that we’re ok with the way things are. We tell ourselves that walking around carrying baggage from eons ago is a normal part of life that we just have to deal with. Yet, we are unable to achieve our goals, succeed in relationships, advance in our careers, experience harmony in our family, and struggle to live our best possible life. You must be brave enough to look at yourself in the mirror and to yourself I’m ready to “empty my emotional trashcan.”
Emotional Trash Can: Your emotional trashcan is that internal space inside where you tuck all your emotional trash away and forget it. Your emotional trash includes your fears, failures, insecurities, past abuse, emotional pain, depression, anxiety, failed relationships; the list goes on and on. These are all the things you tell yourself you’ve gotten over. With each heartbreak, setback, failure, etc. you continue to fill your emotional trashcan until it overflows into other areas of your life.
So, here is the million-dollar question; how does one let go? It’s not easy to let go; it’s a process that takes more time than most people are willing to commit. Typically, people aren’t even aware they need to let some shit go. Believe me I know, I’ve given up on letting go more times than I’m willing to admit. I spent many days and nights trying to figure out why I was stuck in the same career, why my books weren’t selling, why I couldn’t find happiness in relationships. Then it happened, one day I was mad at God because my life wasn’t going the way I wanted it to. I was literally walking around my house cursing, crying and yelling at God. After becoming exhausted, I sat down on the floor in the still quiet wee hours of the morning in silence.
With my back literally pressed against the wall, I waited. Finally, I heard “get out of the way.” I could feel my body tense with anxiety, curling my lips, I questioned, “what the hell?”, “Get out of the way?” Yes, get out of the way; get out of my own way. I was the one standing in the way of living my best possible life. Which brings me to step two: Self-Awareness. Self-Awareness allows us to take an inventory of how we process information, what influences our behavior, how we feel about ourselves, and how we treat others.
Key factors that play a role in the way we process information and manage our lives:
Inherited Behavior “It’s in My genes”:
- Grandparents: The cycle: the way your grandparents raised and influenced your parents plays a role in the way your parents raised and influenced you.
- Parents: The way your grandparents functioned in relationships served as a model for the way your parents functioned relationships. Finally, your parent relationship plays a significant role in how you interact with your mate.
- Your childhood experiences shaped your character, habits, and beliefs
- Feelings of inadequacy, obsessed with the need to excel above others
- Abuse, neglect, abandonment, feeling unloved, Bullying
Toxic environmental exposure Whatever you are frequently exposed to is influencing you
- Work environment (negative co-workers, high stress environment)
- Friends, spouse, girlfriend, boyfriend, fiancé, ex-spouse
- Past relationships
The YOU Factor
- The YOU factor is the most important influence of all. Although the aforementioned factors play a key role in how you operate in your everyday life, the most significant factor that determines your success is how YOU process information and react.
I could sit on the other end of my computer and type, “Let that Shit Go!” all day, but your perception remains your own reality. To be successful, letting go requires preparation; you must become aware of your environment (internal and external), develop a habit of change and embrace an attitude of forgiveness. freedom of being able to let go is absolutely wonderful. I want to share a few tools that helped me prepare myself to let go.
1.Take inventory of your environment
- Find a quiet space, pray and petition God for
awareness. Ask God to open your eyes to your environment, your thought process
and who you need to grant limited access.
- Honestly, identify the things and/or people that
serve little to no purpose in your life. Make a list of at least 5 people or
things you need to let go. List the positive and negative effects these people
or things have in your life. If the negative outweigh the positive it’s a
no-brainer; they/it need(s) to go.
- Pay close attention and listen to that inner
voice that tells you something just ain’t right.
2. Develop a Habit of Change:
- When your train of thought changes, your
self-image will improve. Surround yourself with positive influences. When
engaged in conversation, listen to what people are saying; does the negative
chatter outweigh the positive?
- Pay attention to yourself; how quickly do you
judge others? Do your negative thoughts overshadow positive affirmations?
3. De-clutter your living space
- A person’s physical living environment is a good
indication of what their emotional and spiritual life looks like deep on the
inside. You cannot think clearly in the midst of clutter.
- Clean your house (your physical house).
- Clean out your car
- Clean you clothing closets, food pantry, garage,
4. Get a reality check
- Visualize a trashcan filled with rancid, filthy,
nasty trash. Overflowing and filled to capacity, the trash looks nasty and
smells horrible as it spills onto the floor; this is what your life will
continue to look, feel and smell like if you don’t let that shit go!