I first heard the idea of throwing away your old chairs and dinner table if you want to have new furniture at Bob Proctors’ virtual summit.
The concept is simple. Instead of finding new things to replace old ones you create space by throwing away the old stuff first. Placing the carriage in front of the horse seems counterproductive and inconvenient. I doubt that someone will enjoy having dinner while sitting on an empty kitchen floor.
Strangely, this approach works. Like a stereotypical guy, I find shopping tiring and normally delay buying new clothes. To find motivated I regularly donate clothes to the Salvation Army before updating my wardrobe.
My mind is forced into creative mode when I do not have a lot to wear. I get to research current fashion trends or simply end up visiting my trusted to go shops. Equally important seeing empty space in my wardrobe serves as a reminder for action.
This concept works as well with people perhaps because we extend our personality by attaching to your wall art and loved ones in the same way. Our household items become a part of us similar to how our partner’s life becomes intertwined in a symbiotic network.
It takes time to reach a point of letting go even more so with people. Just like some wear their favorite pair of jeans until they get holes in them we tend to run ourselves to a point of painful exhaustion before giving up.
A good friend of mine spent tremendous efforts trying to keep his relationship alive. An outside observer could tell that it was doomed but he was reluctant to see where this train was heading.
Memories of the great time they spent together at the beginning of the relationship kept holding him back. After spending weeks trying to connect with his partner he finally decided to let go.
It is not an easy decision because it requires bravery knowing the pain that will follow. More importantly, it needs certainty that you have done everything in your power and there is nothing else you can do.
In the case of my friend, he had more at stake as the break up would require him to move overseas. But the decision was made and the universe rolled its dice. My friend was mentally prepared to pack his bags and start a new life.
Two weeks later something unexpected happened. He ran into a girl of his dreams at a convention. She shared similar interests in traveling, learning, and living holistically. Within 4 months they moved in together and were on the market for new furniture.
Humans are evolved to be problem solvers. Cant catch an animal? Let’s build a farm. Walking is too slow? Invent the wheel! We approach relationships as an issue that needs to be fixed trying to solve sometimes an unsolvable puzzle.
There could be a myriad of not dependant on your reasons for why it is not going to work out. Another person needs to work on their issues, doesn’t feel that you are compatible but not willing to admit it, timing is poor, the list goes on.
It is hard to see other options when our minds are fixated on finding a solution in the belief that it is on us to solve it. We need to recognize when that moment comes to save us pain and despair.
In her work, Byron Katie talks about three types of business – mine, yours, and God’s business. Focusing on anything other than yours creates a feeling of hopelessness in a relationship. We can’t force someone to love us and the universe works in its mysterious ways that are hard to predict.
Letting go does not necessarily mean walking away from something or someone you love. It is acknowledging that you have done everything in your power to make it work. It is by creating space we allow for the other person and universe to do their part. Your partner may see this as an opportunity to step up and change things for the better. In some cases, the act of letting go may be a catalyst for a major shift for both of you.
Because we are obsessed with the action, we forget that the empty canvas is equally important as the strokes of the paint that laid on it. In this obsession, we forget that relationship is a duet with partners needing a space to sing their part.
This space between life phases is not an easy one as it is filled with fear. In a great analogy, it is akin to an acrobat letting go of a trapezia bar before hopping to the next one while being 40 feet above the ground.
I am certain that the first time the acrobat did this stunt he must have thought of his hands slipping off the bar. Similarly to that, we think, “What if nobody else will love me if I let go?”
The alternative is maintaining a painful status quo for months or even years. Meanwhile, your perfect match is waiting at the convention center walking around the stalls by themselves.
Don’t keep them waiting. Recognize the moment when you finish singing your part and let the universe do its job.
Jay Martynov helps busy professionals and business owners to manage stress and build a happy life filled with purpose. His coaching includes understanding of behavioral patterns using enneagram, effective daily routines and meditation. You can find more details on Jay’s website or connect on Instagram.