The Beauty of Letting Go

Music playing: You Gotta Be by Des’ree

When I was a teenager, I remember trying out almost everything that everyone was trying out. Take for example facial cleansers. I bought this popular facial wash just because that was the “in” product then — all the local and foreign teen magazines advertised it, the celebrities endorsed it and my friends used it. I’m not saying the product isn’t good. I’m sure it is but I chose it for all the wrong reasons. It was not for my skin. But I insisted that it was because almost everyone I knew back then were using it. My face dried up and it even started to peel.

So I shifted to another brand. My basis for choosing that brand is the same formula — media, celebrities and friends. Unfortunately, not only did it dry my skin, it also caused break outs.

I remember feeling so frustrated back then (yes, over facial wash) just because I didn’t understand how it worked for most people but it didn’t for me. Is the product bad? Probably not because so many people are using it. So it’s my skin? My face? Probably. I mean, I never thought of my skin as being bad but if it has all this dryness and breakouts, it probably is. So then I spent a good time of my teenager life thinking my skin is ugly.

Looking back now, I can’t help but feel silly over feeling so bad over facial wash. But then, on the more serious side, it got me thinking, don’t we all go through that? Don’t we all have that one thing we insist on having just because the world makes us think it’s for us but really, it’s not?

Oh there is nothing wrong with going after something. I am such a go-getter myself. I am passionate, and I am stubborn which is a lethal combination. When I am determined to keep something, I fight almost to the death to make it stay. There is nothing wrong with going after what we want. The danger though is going after something even if we know, deep down, that it is not for us for whatever reason.

It’s there. That tiny but still, certain voice inside us that says “stop.”

As I grew older, life began to teach me that more than learning more, the key to living life fully is to unlearn. Last year was a tough one for me and one of the things that my trials taught me is that, you have to choose your battles. I had to unlearn the fighting, and see more of the choosing. Not all battles are worth fighting. Not all battles are worth the pain, the loss and the damage.

But how do you know which battles are truly worth fighting? And my answer might upset you but it’s really the truth — when you seek it, you will find it.

If you really want to know which battles are worth fighting for, if you are sincerely asking and waiting for an answer, it will come. It will.

And when that day comes, you would just have to do it: let go. It does not make you less of a person although I am sure it will feel exactly like that. But the truth is, it will make you a stronger person. People might think that you are stupid for letting this job go, or that opportunity pass, or that relationship die or that friendship fade but the truth is — you have saved yourself and other people in your life a lot of heartbreak because you can’t make things that are not really yours, yours. There are things that are really not for us, and there are things that were only meant for certain seasons in our lives, not for the rest of it.

So, let go. Let go, untie the knots that bind you, unhook the anchors that hinder you from truly moving. Sail, like you were meant to. And someday when you look back you will find that the things you let go of in the past are nothing compared to the things that lay ahead of you.

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