Sorry to hit you with a picture from Frozen, just as we have begun to thaw out from a long winter! As I wrote my last post, College Rejection: A Society Gone Nuts About What Matters, I found myself singing the film's theme song, "Let It Go." There is something powerful about those three simple words. Maybe that's part of the reason Frozen is the highest-grossing animated film of all time. The healthy part of our soul resonates with the longing to let it go.
For those of you who haven't seen the movie (spoiler alert!), the heroine has a "bad habit" of turning everything into ice. It makes her a difficult person to be around, and imperils everyone close to her. She had to let it go. So do we.
Rejection, fears, a bad habit, the extra weight you put on this winter, mommy or daddy guilt, kid guilt – wouldn't it be great to just let it go? As I wrote in my post about the overheated college acceptance system, society adds to our constant worrying with ever-present reminders of standards that no human achieves without air brushing. Yesterday at the grocery store check out stand I counted 10 magazines about how to lose weight. (I did not return the key lime pie.)
Melody Beattie is one of my favorite authors. She says, "Nurtured, nourished people who love and care for themselves are the delight of the Universe."
It takes courage to refuse to buy into our celebrity obsessed, youth and money oriented culture. We could all probably use less credit card spending and more exercise. Many of us could even drop the pounds, but constant fretting about it does not help.
Starting NOW, decide to stop beating yourself up and think of ways to really nourish yourself. You deserve it. What are you turning into ice that could instead be melted by love? Here are seven ways to let it go that work for me:
1. Self-care: Take the day, the weekend, an entire week off and love yourself. Do what you want to do. (if you are one of the people reading this who think you absolutely can not afford this luxury, I"m talking to you!)
2. Meditation: Spiritual practice is one of the best ways to find release. You are letting it go to a higher power who can actually support you in miraculous ways
3. Family and friends: Spend time with people you love, but only if you aren't doing all of the work -- if that's the case, plan a weekend of reading a book on the sofa.
4. Professional help: For those of you who really can't let it go, mental health professionals have lots of tools, including safe and effective medications that can calm your mind, so you can sort out and discover how to let it go.
5. Love, love, love: Another song that's hard to stop humming is "All You Need Is Love" by the Beatles. Send love to any issue you have (a friend taught me to visualize sending imaginary flowers) and watch it dissolve into nothingness.