Have you mastered the art of letting something go for the sake of your own peace?
We all carry a “life baggage” or a burden that affects us in many ways, whether they come in physical, emotional or mental forms. From childhood trauma to failing grades and even break-ups, our circumstances in life can change the way we act or think in many ways.
Unfortunately, if we’re not aware of ourselves and our own actions, unresolved damage from events that trigger your experiences have a greater chance of getting carried over to your adult years. You don’t want that, do you?
Psychologically speaking, humans tend to follow the path of least resistance. Chances are, we either deflect or avoid issues that ruin our peace for the sake of living life as it is. But unfortunately, leaving them unresolved can eat you alive and affect you as you grow older.
As long as it stays unresolved, this baggage can merge with your own identity until it starts becoming a defining point of yourself. But how would you know if you have a burden that’s holding you back?
You blame yourself too much.
Have you failed an exam because you overslept or got sick when you were supposed to study the day before? It happens even to the best of us, and sometimes we tend to focus more on our own faults, weaknesses, and inadequacies. Unfortunately, this can evolve into a habit that can leave you preoccupied when you could spend the rest of the time ruminating over something else, like, say, your schedule for the following week.
You compare yourself with others too much.
Do you compare both your life and yourself with other people’s lives? Say, do you find yourself envying your classmate’s good grades or your best friend’s popularity in class? Or do you find yourself being scared that you’re not good enough capable enough compared to your peers?
You excessively bury yourself in your work.
There’s nothing wrong with working too hard or keeping yourself busy. But the question lies in overdoing tasks for the sake of staying away from your own thoughts. For instance, you tend to bury yourself in school or at work because you subconsciously want to stay away from what’s happening back home. You feel as though you’re competing against yourself, only to find that there’s no way to escape from those thoughts.
You pass on your emotions to someone else.
Have you ever had an instance where you felt irritated by your friends, family or peers by something that had nothing to do with them? When our thoughts are preoccupied with something else, there are times when we unintentionally transfer those feelings to another person.
You find yourself in a bad mood more often.
Everyone has a bad day. But it’s different when you have a pretty negative perspective on life. Do you find yourself uncomfortable when it comes to facing new situations? Or do you find yourself feeling fearful of what lies ahead in your future?
If you can relate to any (or if not, all) of these examples, then you do have a “life baggage” or more that needs to be removed.
But if you’re a self-directed learner, you can take charge of your life by harnessing these life baggages, which can give you a plethora of beneficial traits that can change you as a student and as a person. From learning how to think on your feet to having a happier outlook in life, self-directed learners have a better grasp of the way they accomplish things. They learn from experience, and once you deep within yourself, you can use your own experiences to not only become a better student, but to also grow as a better person.
So if you find yourself carrying these life baggages, what can you do to sort them out? Here are some tips that you should take:
Write everything down.
Take out a pen and notebook. Look for a good, quiet place to relax, and write everything that weighs you down on your notebook for thirty minutes. And when we say everything, we mean everything: your thoughts, burdens, behaviors, and beliefs. Don’t filter your thoughts or judge yourself; just be honest with yourself and take note of whatever pops out of your head.
Trace the source of your thoughts.
Look back to the past and pinpoint how and where you got these baggages. Is it hard for you to make new friends because you were bullied in the past? Are you scared of speaking up because your classmates used to tease you? Do you find it scary to fail because your family expects nothing less from you as an overachiever? Take note of these pent-up memories but don’t reflect on them too much. Jot them down and move on.
Look at the bright side.
Find a positive angle to the situation or experience that hurt you. For instance, your experience of being bullied when you were younger taught you how to choose your words wisely. Once you see the brighter side of your past, you take back an amount of power and are no longer a victim of it, since you can now choose what to gain from what you’ve experienced.
Fight the negativity with positive affirmations and use it to create change.
Words have the power to make an impact, not only to others, but also to yourself! So use all that energy by converting all that negativity into positive affirmations. A lot can happen if you choose to say, “I will be more attentive with my studies” or “From now on, I will be kinder to people.”
Be in the moment… and let go.
Changing your habits can take time to do, especially if you’ve been hurt and afraid for a long time, so be patient with yourself! If you find yourself carrying the same baggage, don’t deny those thoughts; accept them instead. Write them down in a journal, if you need to. Once you’ve acknowledged them, let them go and remember your positive affirmations instead. We can never change our past, so all that’s left is to focus on what’s in front of us.