Many of us go through our entire lives reacting to the world and others in one
of three ways:
1. Denial. This is the opposite of grabbing your own ears. It's the act of
sticking our fingers in our ears, shutting our eyes, and going “La, la, la.” It's the decision to ignore something that may be very important.
I had a close friend who ignored some serious health issues because she just didn't want to know.
Her denial ended her life at 49 years old.
2. Delusion. This is believing something that is just not factually accurate. My friend, who passed away, deluded herself into believing that the lower back pain she was having was a kidney infection without really getting any proper tests.
3. Fixing. Fixing is the instant need to categorize everything as good, bad, right, or wrong. When we don't have all the facts it's our mind's way of taking shortcuts and forcing everything we observe to fit into our current worldview.
Fixing is also an attempt to control that which we have no control over. Life can be lived and cannot be controlled.
This week we're going to start working on a powerful process we call the L steps that can give us the tools to break these old habits that are robbing us of so much of our time, attention, energy, and enjoyment.
The L-step process is as follows:
The first L step is to Let It Be, so we can get back to living now. Let It Be is an incredibly powerful life
tool that can change the quality of our lives almost immediately.
Let It Be starts with the act of acceptance and ultimately achieves something we call compassionate detachment. Accepting something does not mean we have to like it or approve of it. For instance, bad things sometimes happen to good people. This is a fact. Living in denial or delusion regarding this fact only causes unnecessary suffering in the world. Trying to fix this fact by saying something like, “Maybe they really weren't good people,” doesn't help, either.
Many years ago, I was vacationing with my family at a lodge on top of a mountain. My then 10-year-old stepson Kevin was off playing when he jumped onto a ledge off the Beaten Track and landed right on a poisonous snake. Kevin screamed. The snake screamed and, yes, bit him several times in self-defense. This resulted in an airlift by helicopter and about a week's stay at our local children's hospital.
Kevin recovered completely, and it would have been easy for all of us to judge the snake as bad or wrong or ask the universe why this innocent child had to suffer, but instead, we chose to let it be. The snake was just doing what snakes do. Kevin was just doing what 10-year-old boys do. That's the end of it.
This week's challenge is to let it be. Face the facts, resist the fix when someone does something that upsets you. Let It Be when your hair dryer blows up in the middle of getting ready for a big meeting. Let It Be. It's just a hair dryer. Sometimes they blow up. It’s probably not the universe trying to tell you not to go to the meeting.
When something terrible happens in the world, and you see it in the news
let it be what it is—tragedy--and resist the fix of judging the people involved without knowing all the facts.
Take sticky notes out and write “Let it be” on them and stick them all over your house in your workspace, and all things great or small. The first step toward true personal freedom is to let it be.