On Letting Go, Part III

How do we know when to let go, and when to hold on?

Sometimes when presented with a challenging person or situation in our lives, it can be difficult to determine what constitutes right action.

If what we’re facing is unlike anything we’ve experienced before, can we evaluate it on the merits of our previous experiences? If we do so, we run the risk of devaluing it, or of evaluating it based on a set of outdated criteria.

When something, or someone, so different from our previous experiences comes into our lives, it’s an opportunity for learning about our ingrained beliefs, habits, and patterns. And an opportunity to reflect upon whether or not these are serving us. Sometimes they are, and other times they are not.

That’s the funny thing about identity. We construct it over time, and we can deconstruct it as well. But if we throw out everything we know to be true every time someone comes along with a new idea, we run the risk of losing ourselves entirely.

On the other hand, if we are so concerned with building castles within ourselves that we cannot allow anything new to come in, we are closing ourselves off to growing, to experiencing our lives – and ourselves – more fully.

 And the difference is not always easy to discern.

Sometimes (actually more often than not) there are no easy answers. Through remaining in a space of watchful awareness, and cultivating a heart of compassion for everyone involved in a situation, we can ease the discomfort that is often so much a part of being in the midst of not knowing. When the turmoil within us subsides, we may discover a space of calm, quiet, and peace which holds the answers we seek.

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