Let go of the pretty.

I’m in the middle of a BIG life transition. It’s stressful. It’s hard. It’s U-G-L-Y. I don’t like the unknown.

If you’re anything like me, it’s easy to focus (OK, fixate) on the outcome of any situation. The “what should happen next.”  We are so worried about what will be at the end of a class sequence or a life transition that we forget to notice the gifts along the way. I’d rather move to the end as quickly as possible, thank you very much. Because, in my mind, the end has to be better than the present.

I’m working to follow the advice of my beautiful yogini friend, Nita Rubio, who says, “Let go of the pretty. Let things unfold.”

In the long but awesome yogic text, the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna (the Supreme Being) tells us, “Let your concern be with action alone, and never with the fruits of action. Do not let the results of action be your motive, and do not be attached to inaction”. Krishna’s talking about Aparigraha, the practice of non-grasping. Very simply: “Let it go, people. Just live.”

My first response: Yay, Krishna! I love the idea of living in the moment. I am going to make Aparigraha my best friend!

My reality: Aparigraha and I are duking it out. Constantly.  (Which, by the way, is against the practice of Ahimsa – non-violence.) Lucky for me, my friend Aparigraha is very forgiving. I’ve been starting each day with an intention of letting go of the pretty and the need to know the outcome. And then life happens and I get all twisted up again. My friend, Aparigraha, taps me on the shoulder and whispers, “Hey, I’m still here.” I stop. I breathe. I revisit my intention.

I’m practicing three ways to let go of the pretty. I’m sharing them here with the hope that they’ll help you at a time when you need them:

Ask for help. Being pretty means keeping it together and not letting anyone see you crack. Letting go of the pretty means letting people love you. When you friends ask, “What do you need?” be honest with them.

Set boundaries. There will be people in your life who can’t give you the kind of support you need. Being pretty means you spend time with them even thought it doesn’t feel right. Letting go of the pretty means you can thank them for caring and decline their offers to get together to talk, go out to dinner, etc. You get to define what kind of energy you bring into your space.

Be gentle with yourself. Being pretty means you push through your daily life without taking time to feel. Letting go of the pretty means you allow yourself time and space to break down. Cry when you need to. Breathe a lot.

Today’s intention: I’ll work toward learning to let go of the pretty. I’ll remind myself to trust. I’ll do the best I can, knowing that’s more than enough. Everything else is going to work itself out.

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