4 Ways Letting Go Can Lead to Success

As we progress in our careers and our lives we want to accomplish goals and be more successful. We start to become aware of what has been holding us back. The first step is to identify the things in your life that are not creating a positive influence.

Let go of…

1. Negativity

The first step is to let go of negativity.

  • People. We all know someone in our life that always has something negative to say. They are either talking down specifically to you, your project, or they are generally a pessimistic person. The simplest action item, is to distance yourself from this person. However, it is not always realistic if you work with them, or they are family. I like to find at least 1 positive point in what someone is talking about and point it out to them. Then you both benefit and walk away with a positive mindset.
  • Thoughts. It is so easy to be insecure or down on yourself. These thoughts flow so easily through us we do not always realize it. The hardest part is to identify when this is happening and push through it. My boyfriend told me the other day that I am too negative in the morning. I didn’t even realize that my grumpiness in the morning was affecting how he started his day. There is no excuse for this. Now I am working on being more positive as soon as I wake up. I put on a smile and think about one good thing that I get to do that day. (usually I look forward to drinking my tea or coffee)

Letting go of the things in your life that create a negative environment only leaves rooms for positivity. Mind over matter.

Let go of…

2. The Past

  • Mistakes. Everyone has made a mistake in the past. Mistakes can create hesitation and uncertainty for the next time you try something new. You cannot let your past mistakes or embarrassments hold you back. You have to let go of that gut wrenching feeling and move on. Try again.
  • Habits. It takes a minimum of 21 days to change a habit. This starts with 1 day. Habits are something we do because we have always done them. Its something that is routine, or easy. We need to challenge ourselves to break our bad habits and replace them with good habits. Wake up early, or go for a run and notice how you feel after this change.

Let go of…

3. Control

  • Environment. The weather, the noise, and your surroundings are outside of your control. We have to adapt and let go of the notion that you have immediate control over what is happening around you. We can only control ourselves and our actions. If you change your own attitude, your environment will also begin to change, like a ripple effect.
  • People. When we manage a project, we want to control how people are doing the work. Sometimes we want to control what people say and do. A perfect example is wanting to control actions of different people in our family. We cannot control other people. We have to trust our coworkers, friends, and family.

Why? What we really need to ask ourselves is why? Why is it so hard to let go of control.

Let go of…

4. Fear

  • The unknown. I always get a touch of anxiety before a big trip. It is hard to anticipate what the new destination will be like. Anything new can be scary. Its like walking into a pitch black cave, or swimming in dark water. You do not know what is on the other side. Letting go of fear takes a big leap of faith. We have to trust in ourselves and in the world that everything will be ok.
  • Comfort Zone. We need to break up our daily routine sometimes. Doing the same thing everyday only waste time until our inevitable end. Push boundaries. Try something new. What do you have to lose. It is the only way to grow.

Let go of fear, anxiety, and resistance to new opportunities. Allow yourself to flourish.

How letting go has led to my success

I grew up in Baltimore, Maryland and went to college at the University of Maryland for architecture. After school, I started my first professional job with an architect. I appreciated the opportunity and began to learn about this new industry I had committed 4 years of my life to. I lived with a friend in Hampden but I was searching for a place that I wanted to stay long term. I started to realize that I could not find a place that felt right to settle down in. The winters were long, cold, and isolated. Everything was familiar and nothing was changing.

My best friend, Nathan, was recording video for conferences around the United States. He came back from San Diego, CA, and raved about the incredible time he had. The city was so beautiful and he enjoyed exploring the neighborhoods, beaches, and culture. We started to plan a time for us to go back and visit together. We were both in a place in our life that we were looking for a change, so I suggested why don’t we just move to San Diego. What did we have to lose? We could always come back to what we knew. He agreed. This was a crazy idea and we had no plan, but why not give it a shot.

We saved up for a few months and started the process of lettings go. We had to let go of our jobs, our apartments, our friends. These places around us that were so familiar, were all about to be left behind. We had to let go of our families which I did not realize at the time how hard it would be to leave them. We were leaving the people that had taken care of us our whole life. We said our good byes, packed a few bags into my car and headed on our new adventure 3000 miles west.

6 years later, I am a licensed architect working at the second largest firm in San Diego. Nathan and I made new friends, met significant others, and remain close with family through weekly phone calls. I have a pretty good life and I would not be where I am today if I had not taken those steps to let go of my fear, let go of my surroundings and take a chance by trusting the world. I learned first hand that with big risks, come big rewards.

These are 4 ways that letting go can help lead to your success in business and personal experience. I used these tools to help improve my life. Let go of your mind and be free. 🙂

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Michele Rivenbark

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