A few days ago a friend posted the following status message:
Keep people in your life who truly love you, motivate you, encourage you, enhance you, and make you happy. If you know people who do none of these things, let them go.
I read it and wondered how true it was yet so difficult to follow. We mostly know who such people are who drain us out but we still hold on to them. Our poor heart does not know how to let people go and be on its own.
Why is it so difficult to let go of something, or more importantly, someone?
I think there are multiple reasons for holding on to people who hurt us continuously but we still cling to them.
1. We get too hopeful about others.
We constantly hope that would change their attitude towards us; they would love us more in future or their behavior in general would improve
2. We expect situations to change with time without doing anything to change them.
While it is lovely to be optimistic and hopeful about people and life in general, it is disastrous to hold on to something negative hoping it will become positive at some point.
Problems come when we are not sure of when to let others go. We keep jumping between ‘it’s okay’ and ‘this shouldn’t have happened’. We keep waiting for the last string to break and by then we are completely drained.
How to find out if you should hold on or let go:
The first sign that tells you it is high time you let it go is that things have not changed or improved over the last few months.
When do you throw away an expensive thing or something that had been your favorite? You throw it away when you see it as useless or irreparable.
Think the same way about your relationship. When do you end it? The moment you learn that it just cannot be repaired.
Now you might be thinking: What about the clichés that people change, the optimism? The teachings that nothing is impossible and one should never quit?
The answer to these doubts is in one simple word – life!
Your life is not a race. It is not a competition to be won. It is not an exam you take to prove your worth. Your present life is the only number of years you have got to live. To love and to be loved.
Never hold onto anything because you want to prove something or you will always repent later. Also, relationships are delicate. They should never be confronted with ego and pride. There is no harm in trying. And winning is always good. But win your life. Win yourself. Win happiness and love for yourself. Do not try to win a person. It is wrong and certainly not worth the time and emotions you spend on it.
Life coach Cheryl Richardson describes five types of toxic qualities in people:
- Blamer (keeps complaining)
- Drainer (always needs you and contacts you only when he needs you)
- Shamer (keeps criticising you)
- Discounter (discounts or challenges everything you say)
- Gossip (keeps talking about others at their back)
If he is any or all of the above, you just get him out of your life, please.
To help you get started with it, just think of these:
You cannot change someone else: you can not change others. And it is not even good to expect someone else to change for you. So stop expecting them to change. Move on if you are not comfortable.
The sooner the better: if it happens later, it will only hurt you more. So, save yourself from the mounting grief and make it happen now.
Are you not in love with yourself? Why do you want to settle down with less when you actually can have more and better? Love yourself and choose the best for your life.
Don’t put your life on hold: every moment that you spend with such a person holds you back from moving on to a greater future. Don’t waste your time imagining what is not going to happen.
Face the reality: being in illusions is not always a bad thing. It does help in many cases. But when your future and entire life time in involved, it is better to be true to yourself and the relationship.
What kind of future do you want? One of the reasons many people keep holding on to things is that they think about the huge amount of time they have invested in that relationship. Do not think about the time you have spent, instead think about the time you have remaining in your life.
Finally, read the following quote and move on.
Watching you walk out of my life does not make me bitter or cynical about love. But rather makes me realize that if I wanted so much to be with the wrong person how beautiful it will be when the right one comes along.