Let something go.
“If you let go a little, you will have a little peace. If you let go a lot, you will have a lot of peace.”
– Ajahn Chah
We’ve all wished one time or another to be able to change the past: To go back to that person who’d been nasty to us and retort with refined wit and startling precision, or to have grabbed firmly that smoothie jar that’s just smashed against the kitchen floor in that characteristic slow-motion fashion, or to have prepared THAT question you skipped for the exam, or to have said ‘no’ to that I-sooooo-promise-you-it’s-the-last drink, or...
But until time machines are invented and we all go bonkers with time-paradoxes, we better start dealing now with the fact that things don’t always go the way we want, so we can get out of that unhelpful negative cycle. This may become an unnoticed habit, but it can be really damaging. So here’s a practice to start turning the tables in our favour:
Choose one thing you wished could have gone better recently, nothing major, just some slight annoyance.
Write it down in a little paper.
High five yourself!
Ok now, seriously… once you’ve recognised that event you wish had gone differently:
It can help imagining it’s happened to a friend or someone you love. What would you say to them? You can use that kindness for yourself too.
You can use a mantra like This too, as in: this is also part of life.
Make an active decision not to dwell on it anymore.
Being human is a tragicomedy: laugh about it!
WHY IS IT GOOD?
Based on her recent study Dr. Kate Leger explains: “Negative emotions that linger after even minor, daily stressors have important implications for our long-term physical health.” But if that alone wasn’t enough:
By letting go of those small things, you’ll reduce your stress levels and sleep better.
You stop ruminating about negative stuff, making space for more positive, useful thoughts.
You don’t allow small things ruin the rest of your day.
Lingering negative emotions can activate your stress-related systems which, in turn, can weaken your body and leave you more susceptible to disease.
Negative emotions can lead to unhealthy decisions, such as eating junk food, smoking or drinking alcohol.
No doubt, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to practice and grow, here are just a few:
SOMEONE SENDS YOU A MESSAGE IN ALL CAPS, AS IF THE FONT HAD VOLUME!!!!!
Your friend arrives late. Again.
The waiter took away your plate with that last bite you were saving for last.
Your workmate doesn’t stop humblebragging about her recent so-undeserved promotion
You read a nasty comment about you on a long email chain where you’ve been copied.
EXTRA BROWNIE POINTS
When you wake up in the morning, set the intention to let small things go.
Wishing you a week of freeing yourself from the small, annoying things!
Vero and Enrique
What's your Kensho?
JOIN THE KENSHO LIFE
Sign up to our newsletter to receive our latest guided meditations, news and articles.