5 Ways to Let Go

April 11, 2015 Updated: April 28, 2015

Breathe in and picture the word “LET.” 

Breathe out and see “GO.”

These are the words my yoga teacher spoke as she began class. All I could think was I soooo need to be here!

“Let it go” I say it often. What about you? Are you good at letting things go? It is wise advice but hard to follow.

When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.
— Lao Tzu

Everyday I remind myself to practice letting go. If I get annoyed by petty problems, I try to remind myself that focusing on little irritations takes away from attending to the more positive aspects of my life.

When I devote precious energy to silly irritations, I cannot use it elsewhere for much better purposes. When I sit back and track my thoughts, I understand how easily I am distracted by inconsequential thoughts.

I know that I have a lot of company in finding it difficult to let go. Here are some tips for all of us.

Ask yourself if it helps. Does it help you to ruminate over this event or are you trying to solve some experience in the past and are reliving the past?

Let go of being right. Realize that you may cling to things because they might make you feel that you have the moral high ground. It gives you a certain sense of satisfaction but does it serve a purpose? Does this other person care if you are right? Does anyone but you care if you are right?

Understand that letting go takes practice. Things come up and do your best to let it go. As you repeat this process you will become more and more open to letting things go. You can start practicing today! It is pretty common that whatever you have let go will show up in your thoughts again. And that’s OK. Just let it go each time it shows up. It will quietly vanish over time.

Accept reality. Things are what they are.

Sometimes you just need to embrace the reality of what life brings. (konstanti/iStock)
Sometimes you just need to embrace the reality of what life brings. (konstanti/iStock)

Let go of the negative. And the petty and unimportant stuff.

If you treat every situation as a life and death matter, you’ll die a lot of times.
— Dean Smith

You know what is truly important to you–don’t waste your time on the rest.

Jennifer Dubowsky, LAc, practices acupuncture in Chicago. She earned her Bachelor of Science in kinesiology from the University of Illinois and Master of Science in oriental medicine from Southwest Acupuncture College in Colorado. She completed an internship at the Sino-Japanese Friendship Hospital in Beijing. For more information, visit TCM007.com