Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Letting Go

Every once in awhile we need to let go of the beliefs that are keeping us from moving forward in this life. We gather together all this stuff over the years and we think it's keeping us alive. The truth is that some of our collective beliefs are keeping us from really living. Whether it's family, money, work or workouts, the things we're clinging to are clinging to us. I'm not promoting an abrupt 180 degree shift in philosophy because that's not necessary for most people. The problem is that most people don't have the wherewith all to see what needs changing. I'm asking the folks who keep running into the same walls to see if there might be a different road. Even a mild shift in direction is only possible if you're paying close attention to the things that aren't working. We all get these golden moments here and there to create positive change, but rarely do we see them.

This thing called life is such a crazy mixed bag of ever shifting moods, weaknesses, strengths, pain, elation, sadness and on and on. A strongly held belief system could easily get crushed beneath all that. Letting go means to loosen up, become flexible and understanding, stop being attached to the outcome and staying curious and open to new things. My first Law of Health & Fitness is Variety. If variety is the spice of fitness, then it should also be the key to combating stress and complacency. I'm a big fan of things that work well over time, and I'm not here to tell you to abandon the things in your life that are working for you. In most cases when we find ourselves in a rut, a tiny shift is all we need to create a new outlook.

One of the biggest road blocks for most people when it comes to their health and well being is understanding what it takes to maintain their health and well being. The answer is letting go, and knowing when to let go of ideas, philosophies, concepts, programs and dogma that are dogging you. If your shoulder hurts while doing push-ups then stop thinking that it's a good idea to do push-ups. Pain in your body and in your heart is telling you that it's time for something else. Try not to hold on too tightly to the things that no longer feed your soul. This won't require advice from other people. You have the answers. And you'll find them when you start letting go.

"We must seek the true causes of happiness and satisfaction." ~ The 14th Dalai Lama


psyknife said...

Wow, this entry hits home to how I've been feeling lately... and also what I've been trying to do. I'm glad I have the wonderful BB peeps (and Mark, of course) to help keep me from doing one big downward nose dive!
Lately I seem to find myself trying to do what I can to match what other people do, and I realize that's just not the ticket... in my fitness or in my life. I just need to let go and follow my path that is set out for me in both of these areas. I have a feeling they are headed somewhere good, so I just need to stop dwelling on it all!
I'm really looking forward to camp in Chicago!

psalm9567 said...

"Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?...Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. ~~Jesus Christ, Matthew 6:25-27, 34

It's all in your perspective, isn't it, Tony? Those small shifts are so important in order to keep ourselves on the right path. With a goal in mind, and a mindset that is forgiving and not legalistic, we can come at life with JOY and CONTENTMENT. Worry about a few pounds or even a perfect diet has no place in the psyche. Life is to be enjoyed, not squandered on worrying.

For me, I find that joy and contentment in Christianity. Christ is my anchor, my navigator, my compass, my rudder, my pilot, etc. His Word shows me where I'm off-track, so I confess and return to the path that is best for me (though sometimes it's the hardest path around). Like you said, a little shift. It helps me to NOT be crushed by life, knowing that He is with me. Right now I certainly feel very beat up. Beat up but not broken, crushed but not destroyed. And, there is healing and peace, even in the midst of great suffering and trial. I will come out stronger on the other end of all this grief, knowing that I am not alone and that I am deeply loved by my Lord. Just a little shift, looking to Him instead of my situations. What a great place to cast my eyes!

Thanks again for this post, friend.


DivaM said...

"You are only as young as your mind is flexible!"

I think that if you are constantly resisting changes that need to be made it really wears on you mentally. The more open to adaptation and change you are the younger you feel. Beeing stuck in a rut and resisting change is actually more stressful than adjusting and changing the things that aren't working.

I can see that now. Hindsight is always 20/20 right? I was mentally older 4 years ago than I am now. By at least 10 years. The more changes I made and the more aware I was to what worked for me and what didn't, the younger I felt. There is a freedom that comes with knowing that things don't have to stay a certain way. Letting go can be beautiful thing!


christy6 said...

As Always - thanks for the words of wisdom Tony!! Love those things that make me think hmmmmmmmmmm
Hugs :)

Nick said...


Back on the ranch in NY you told me, "Nick, I want you to know how it feels to stand on your hands." Well, aside from being one of the most thrilling rushes of my life, I think it was a true lesson in the art of "letting go." By being placed in such a compromising position, I was literally forced to open my mind and body to a whole other world of stimulation and thought. When we possess the courage, faith and fortitude to push ourselves to go that extra mile in all aspects of daily life, we naturally open ourselves to
new paths that will ultimately lead us to inner satisfaction and happiness.

AlfaSunshine said...

Yikes I deleted my first post!

Thanks for the fabulous weekend Tony. You are a gracious host. I now have your #1 law and your #9 on my workout/family room wall. How inspired am I? VERY!!

I gotta stop thinking of myself as fat. The self help stuff I am into right now especially emphasizes the power of my thoughts my beliefs. My mind and the universe aim to please whether it is good for me or not. Limiting thoughts and beliefs are the bane of human existance. And as for you Mr Horton I hope I am there as a friend to see you kick the apple to the tree that you want it to be under because ultimately it is your choice and I would love to be privy to all that.

I am starting a new round of p90 tomorrow. I am lean and super fit!

HULA77 said...

Tony, only in the last year have I started to use a very similar philosophy. Not only has it mellowed and humbled me more, but it's made me really realize that I love myself enough to do it. It was a long, hard road to get to this point, but I'm doing it, and does it feel great! Do I have my down days? Yep. Do I get into a funk? Yep. But now I know what to do to help myself work through those times.

Capski said...

I think what keeps some from being open to new things is fear. Fear they will have to give up their comfort zone and fear of failure. I heard alot of naysaying when I started P90 - and alot of astonishment when I hit my goal. 2 years ago when I decided to move from PA to Florida to help my sick, elderly parents (I moved in with them) - those same naysayers chimed in: Do you know what you're getting yourself into? You'll hate Florida; You're giving up your life; What do you want to do that for??... so on and so on. In both instances I asked myself - what if I succeed - what if this all has a positive outcome. With P90 I hit my goal and got healthy -- which led to my next challenge: another complete lifestyle change to help my parents. Was that a success? If you look at the fact they died within 6 weeks of each other (after 55+ years of marraige) - no I wouldn't say that was success, no one wants to lose a loved one..... but the positive side to stepping out is that I got to spend the last 2 years of their life with them and learn so much more about them; I heard my father tell me out loud how much he loved me; and I learned how wonderful my sisters truly are. If I hadn't let go and just listen to what I knew was right, and take that step, I would have missed out on something wonderful. So don't be afraid to let go, no matter what situation or opportunity manifests itself to you..... when you let go, it's when you fly the highest!

AlfaSunshine said...

Nothing like camp for a little motivation! Did my shopping today from the beachbody custom meal plan. Nothing but healthy stuff in the basket! Went to do sculpt from p90 and I forgot I leant it to my I did chest and back from the X and I decided to just put the x in my wowy calendar and do it! What the heck. I'll never get bored and super nice people will rue the day they bagged on my fitness!! (hehehe grins go out to mr fifer)

Mary Cecy said...

Hi my friend...
Writing from NC while dealing with a family emergency. I have let go of a lot of things this past week. One thing that has kept me in control has been tracking my eatings. Spending over 12 hrs in a hospital is not only boring it can be really bad. I realized that after a few days I had not even exercise. I started doing calf raises in the waiting room. Then another person told me, you can use the STAIRS!! Hello! 10th floor and they go as far down as the 3rd floor. That is 7 flights of free stair master lol. Up and down. So I have brought a little variety to add to the fabulous cafeteria they have in CNC. Amazing when you know what you have to do and you find ways of doing it. THANKS!

GreatDane said...

Hi Tony,

I heard you several time over the weekend say "... and how is that working for you? ..."

It can be so easy to get caught in a rut, why do we hold on to things that are not helping us?

I need to be better at asking myself that question...

Always learning...

Thanks for a great time at the LA camp... I definately let go of several beliefs about myself there...


KatePS said...

But we get so stuck looking at the darned window that's closed behind us that we don't focus on the door that is opened before us. Letting go is so hard. Sometimes we just have to have faith.

Thanks for the words of wisdom. I know I need to let go of some of those things that are keeping me from moving forward. Sometimes I feel like God has to knock me upside the head to do it. Sometimes it's His gentler nudge that gets my attention. Here's to learning to let go of those things that aren't feeding my soul.

Here's to moving forward and finding happiness, satisfaction, and peace!

RIck Monroe said...

I am on the Jagermeister Country tour and I started P90X 2 weeks before the tour started. I have lost over 20lbs and 5 guys from the tour are now doing P90X! I feel like a sales rep :) Thanks for making a product that actually works.