Focusing Tip #647 – The problem with letting things go

Focusing Tip #647 – The problem with letting things go
March 6, 2019 Ann Weiser Cornell
Might there be something that works better than saying "I need to let this go"? Read on...

Focusing Tip #647 – The problem with letting things go

Might there be something that works better than saying “I need to let this go”? Read on…

Jael writes:

Nowadays it’s the style to say that you need to “let it go” when an unpleasant feeling or thought comes to you–especially when you realize this is a well-known part that usually comes. But something in me doesn’t feel comfortable with the idea of letting things go. I am wondering if the process of letting go occurs naturally in Focusing. Also, I want to ask you if sometimes it might happen that a part of me “doesn’t want” to let go ever (and something else feels “oh, this will never end!”).

Dear Jael:

I agree with you! I too am not comfortable with the inner statement “I need to let it go.”

When I hear a person say that, I feel sad, because in my opinion they are not trusting their process. When the Focusing process is followed as I would recommend, things let us go! We don’t ever have to let them go.

And I would already question the phrase “an unpleasant feeling or thought.” A feeling or thought comes to you… and something in you finds it unpleasant….

I suspect it is the part that labeled it “unpleasant” that now wants to “let it go.”

But in all of this, the other one, the feeling or thought itself, has not been connected with or heard for what it feels from its point of view.

When you become the inner Listener, when you don’t take sides or try to change things, when you bring empathy to every part of you… it is astonishing how much transformation can take place. And it is transformation that never feels violent or oppressive to any part of you.

That is why Focusing works so well! Because it is so inclusive, respectful, and inwardly non-violent.

The responses you are talking about — “a part of me doesn’t want to let go ever” and “a part of me that says oh this will never end” — are manifestations of an inner war.

But if nobody is insisting on letting go, this inner war will go quiet and a beautiful creative inner peace will arrive.

Yes, letting go does happen naturally… without anyone ever having to “let it go”!


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