Something my dad always says to me when I feel stuck worrying about something out of my control is to eliminate it as an option. In the darkest sense of this conversation it was about my longing to die. If living was my only option, wouldn’t I have to make the best of it? This idea, although intense in this example, is a concept I carry with me through everyday coping. Know a boy is no good for me? Eliminate dating him as an option. Want to buy something I can’t budget sensibly? It’s not attainable to me, the decision is out of my control. Stressing about whether or not I still want to go to my friend’s birthday party tonight? I already made the decision to show up, it is now my responsibility. Revisiting a choice I’ve already made minimizes my ability to make decisions.
I’ve started a new strategy. When I feel strongly that I need to move on from something, sometimes that desire isn’t enough to keep me away. Whether it be a boy covered in red flags or morning coffees I can’t budget for, I have to find a way to move on. What’s even more harmful than allowing these factors to remain is teasing myself with the idea of them. Perhaps it’s taking a deeper look at who I am and what kind of man I really want in my life. Maybe it’s finding a cheaper substitute for caffeine. However I decide to move forward, my strategy is to truly hear my advice.
This is what I do: With an unwavering and natural confidence, I take a deep breath and I gently say out loud to myself, “let it go.” I shrug my shoulders, encourage my mind with a smile and that’s that. Why shouldn’t my decisions be that simple? If I’m making a decision, isn’t it to sort out and move on from the situation? I know I can trust my gut. I weigh the pros and cons and I determine the solution I expect the most positive outcome from. I MUST learn to listen to myself. If I’m not listening to myself, my thoughts are just clutter filling my mind. Unorganized anxiety. Misplaced, unidentified problems. I must hear my hesitation. When something doesn’t seem to fit in my life, I can trust that judgement. I lose faith in my strength each and every time I waiver on a decision I thought I already made. I made it right the first time. I was thoughtful, open minded, dedicated. I don’t need to succumb to this urge for what’s harmful to me. With hard work and understanding, a better option can be determined.
There’s a new form of empowerment hearing this phrase come out of my mouth. “Let it go” can get stuck on repeat in my mind, turning motivation into background noise. Bringing my response out into the open holds me accountable. No going back, no ignoring my command. What brings unnecessary tension can be removed and I just have to stand by my word. You know what feels powerful to me? My goals. My possibility. Trust in myself. My voice is a reminder that I am present. I am the boss of my life and I have the final say in what I let interfere with it.
There are two reasons I do things. Either it brings me joy or I have a responsibility to uphold. If I don’t need or want something in my life, I have the power to move on without it. By filtering out those detrimental longings, I make room for the things that can benefit me. Men who will encourage growth, a morning routine that is sustainable. I choose to spend less time worrying about the things I’ve already decided on. There’s a reason for all of my feelings. I’m free to find things that truly bring me joy.
Lindsay Greenberg, providing perspective on how to live a magical life.