Let me tell you, right up front, this isn’t easy. In fact, it’s hard and it takes persistence and consistence to master it. So if you want to stop reading right now, go ahead. Keep leading the small life you have, the frustrating existence and give up those big dreams and the ability to thrive not just survive. You deserve better, of course, but until you step up and start doing the real work, it isn’t going to happen.
Ready? Okay, then I’m going to give you a secret that has totally transformed my life in business and personally.
Let go. That’s it, that’s the whole thing. Just let go.
When someone comes at you in a confrontational manner, when you are feeling attacked, don’t attack back. Don’t defend. Just let it wash over you. This is their stuff, let them own it. Don’t take it on. The minute you take it on, it becomes yours. It owns you and you are no longer in charge but instead you have jumped into that cycle of reacting.
I’m not suggesting you do nothing. I am telling you to ACT, and relinquish the chaos that comes with reacting. This is a very hard lesson to learn. It has taken me years to master this and I still lapse into reacting at times. But it is far better to master this some or most of the time than not at all. Reaction is based on emotion and we all know that emotions are often irrational. It is when every other part of us operates except our brain, the part we need the most.
Let me share a personal example of this. There was a contractor I was dealing with and he was jumping up and down in email about a balance owed of $135. (That isn’t a typo.) He had been paid in full of $15,000, but this was with held because there was incomplete and unsatisfactory workmaship. So for less than 1% of the total job he threateded legal action.
My first response was to react, get irate, be angry, defensive or fall to pieces with anxiety. But when I let go, I let him own this nonsense (and it was nonsense) I was able to step back, allow my brain to kick in and create a rational, well thought out reply, and not allow myself to fall into the rabbit hole of chaos and negative energy that he was generating.
So, here’s the bottom line. When you want to truly live that Ghandi mantra “be the change you wish to see in the world,” it is about letting go and at the same time you are keeping control. Designing your life is about keeping control of your emotions, you are guiding your steps with thought, and your actions become mindful instead of random or reckless.
I urge you to try this for just a week. It will take some getting used to and you will definitely slide off many times, climb back up. Take a deep breath and when confronted by an unpleasant situation, first let go and then engage your brain before you allow your emotions to run away with a reaction.
I would love to hear from you! What has affected you in your business or personal life that you just can’t let go? Leave me a comment with your own story and how you dealt with it – would you have handled it differently today?
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