Lately, I came across this concept of the Shmita year, while checking Esther Perel’s official social media page on Instagram. The Belgian psychotherapist, Perel, asserted how this concept can call for us all through this year that is; post-pandemic, since the world needs to recover and heal as a wider system. The Shmita concept is also known in the Jewish tradition as the Sabbatical year. There’s also reference to this in the Bible back in ancient years, and mentioned in Hebrew calendars as well. But what is Shmita about or the meaning of its concept? When mentioned by our ancestors, it meant that the year ahead was to be about recollection, self-care and the process of letting go. In other words, to focus more on the personal enrichment of oneself.
In this blog, I will focus on the process of letting go. What is the meaning behind the process of letting go and how can you achieve the goal of letting go?
When you hear the phrase ‘to let go’, most might relate to bad memories or painful thoughts. Or even to let go one might relate it to stop thinking about something that happened in the past that made you suffer or even feel angry for too long over it. Hence, letting go means to accept that this happened and that you cannot change it since you do not have control over such thing. The process of letting go, and hence, moving on is a process that depends on your consciousness. You can use the following tips to let go but if you find it hard on your own, you can ask for professional help.
- Create a positive mantra that you tell yourself like instead of saying ‘I cannot believe this happened to me!’ you can say ‘I’m lucky to be able to find a new path’
- If possible create physical distance from the situation or person that is causing you more pain or feelings to be upset
- Focus on yourself. Focus on the present and not on the person or the situation that caused you pain or anger. Try to be grateful for the present moment.
- Engage in self-care and practice mindfulness. The more you take care of yourself both physically and mentally, the more you will be able to move on and away from what is negative. Practicing mindfulness can help you to be more in the present moment and in the now and not in the past.
- Remember that letting go depends on your consciousness, therefore do not wait for others to apologies if someone hurt you or if it is something that happened that made you feel angry or hurt. Do not try to answer questions of why and how, if you want to move on because to certain questions you will never get an answer
- Negative emotions need to flow and cannot be ignored or fought back. Let yourself free to talk about these emotions and on painful feelings.
- If possible work on your own forgiveness because it allows you to let go of anger, guilt and sadness.
Remember, you have control on yourself and your thoughts and not on others or on life itself. So, the process of letting go depends on you! Think positive as the happiness of your life depends on your thoughts.
If you think that you can benefit from professional support on this issue you can reach out here.
Rachel Osmond is a Family Therapist with Willingness who works with individuals, couples and families. She also has experience with children and adolescents.
Lindberg, S. (2018). ²How to let go of things from the past². Reviewed by Browne, D. Retrieved from Healthline, 18, 9, 2021, https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-let-go