Learning to Live Unattached is the Key to Having Everything You Need

I ADORE my husband, but he is not mine.

I really like my car, and though money was exchanged to have the privilege of driving it, it will only last but for so long.

I only purchase things that I need in a moment to live (food, water, etc) or that I want in that moment for whatever reason, but later could decide to give it away or change my mind about it entirely. Here’s my point:

Possession Consciousness Is Dangerous; It’s Unhealthy in EVERY WAY!

Admittedly, I’ve never watched Star Wars…not a fan of that kind of entertainment (clutch your pearls, lol), but the advice to train yourself to let go of everything you fear losing is, I believe, one of the best practices to master what it means to live life and not suffer through it. Most people live life gripping onto people, circumstances and things that are on their own paths of change, but because they fail to embrace living the unattached life, they suffer and project that energy on all susceptible to it.

Regardless of how it seems, I’ve learned and live by:

Life is NOT Unfair!

My life has served seeming insurmountable challenges; the really hard blows all appear that way in the beginning. It’s why personal growth has to be intentionally developed BEFORE you need it, as something you expect you’ll need (because you will) or you won’t grow as intended through those difficulties. Eventually, as they pile on, you’ll become overwhelmed and overcome; like many, desperately trying to hold onto people and things you’d be better off letting go.

My life has certainly dealt it’s share of blows. I’m guessing your’s has too. They never feel good, but they’re all gifts, intended to prepare us for more and to propel us into better. I’ll share some of mine which will hopefully help you to see some of your own.

Possession consciousness starts out quite innocently…

My Clothes

My Shoes

My Jewelry

My House

My Car

But then there’s this level of possessiveness…

My Father

My Mother

My Son

My Daughter

My Man

My Woman

UH-OH! People Possession! (More on that a little later…)

For the most part, all material possessions lose their value. A big part of our society’s barometer for success is how much one has, so people place value on stuff.  It’s why many people get up every day: To work harder so they can get more stuff.  Nothing is wrong with having stuff, but if the stuff has you, it’s a setup. The reasons behind heart ties (emotional attachment) to stuff are multiple, and they create so much drama for people in their quest to satisfy internal desires with external stuff. It’s dangerous!

People stay in unhealthy relationships because they don’t want to lose material possessions or pay money to get out of them, even when divorce is the healthiest option for all involved.

People buy more house than they can afford to furnish, more car than they can afford to maintain and rack up credit card bills trying to impress people they don’t even like. And when they lose any of these things they lose their minds!

Say it with me:

Life is NOT Unfair!

I’ve been divorced twice; in one case he barely contributed to the things accumulated so I had an indignation about keeping my stuff, and in the other case though he contributed I had equal rights to all the stuff, but I left everything which left me financially worse off. But let me tell ya, nothing I lost compared to the peace I gained. And although the processes were painful, both divorces were exactly what I needed (regardless of what they wanted) for me to grow into my next best version of myself. Since then, I’ve grown so far past both of those (necessary) experiences that upon reflection, they are mere moments in time.

Then, after living from coast to coast and settling back in my hometown and back around my family (who was in many ways the family I left 13 years earlier, however I was not the same — another story for another time) just when it seemed life was back on track accumulating stuff, I lost it all again to Hurricane Katrina. It took everything I owned except the three days of clothes I brought with me when I evacuated: 3 shirts, 3 pairs of shorts, 3 pairs of panties, 2 bras, the earrings I was wearing, and a pair of flip-flops (and a CyberSonic toothbrush).

The event itself was devastating in many ways, but unlike many, because I had a healthy relationship with (not an unhealthy attachment to) things, my resilience kicked in. For a half a second I thought about all the new stuff I’d just bought to go in my new place and the fly ass wardrobe I’d built, but then I shook it off!

IT’S JUST STUFF!

Say it with me:

Life is NOT Unfair!

Listen, it took a while to figure out life again to even be in the position to build another wardrobe and acquire more things so yes it knocked the wind out of me, but because I’d effectively processed the previous “losses” and learned I could decide my relationship with things, thus in that moment honored my decision to live an unattached life; reminded myself that I’m in no way attached to stuff and there is nothing that I cannot part with. The journey was establishing within me things way more valuable than stuff.

These philosophies of life kicked in:

  • Life Happens; Life Does Not Happen To Me.

  • Embrace What Is; If It Is, Then It’s Supposed To Be.

  • My Experiences Are Purposeful and Intended To Prepare Me

This is the foundation of building a healthy relationship with stuff. In so many ways, I’m grateful for each of these experiences of loss. It’s impossible to view things that you no longer have as a loss when you grow enough to see the purpose in them no longer being in your possession.

People Possession

Healthy emotional ties to people are never wrong, but here’s an uncomfortable reality: most relationships are not healthy; we’re all tied to people, and it’s each of our responsibility to govern our relationships. “Healthy” is available, but the only way to achieve it is to fully understand and apply the idea that we relate to people, we do not possess people.

Human development teaches us that relationships change, yet it’s human nature to want relationships to stay the same, and that’s why personal development should never stop. You should expect every relationship to change because every person, regardless of your relationship to them, is on their own individual journey. The reasons that we are here are to learn and to grow. You can’t grow if you are somebody’s possession because you’re only allowed to do, be and have what they want from you for themselves, and that’s not love.

Too many people misinterpret possessiveness for love. If s/he is controlling your every move: who you communicate with, what you wear (clothes, makeup), what you do, how you act – they are attentive, but do not mistake that for love.

Love allows. Allows you to be without requiring their permission. Allows you to grow and develop into more of yourself. Allows you to learn more so you can do and  be more. Love considers, cooperates and collaborates. It does not disrespect or demand, nor does it dictate.

What matters in life is how you respond to the things that show up. This is my automatic switch to all things, and it bears repeat:

  • Life Happens; Life Does Not Happen To Me.

  • Embrace What Is As If I Ordered It; If It Is, Then It’s Supposed To Be.

  • My Experiences Are Purposeful and Intended To Prepare Me.

This is the foundation for healthy relationship with people. In so many ways, I’m grateful for the relationships that have changed (family and friends) or have ended (professional, romantic, family and friends). It’s impossible to view relationships ending as failure when you grow enough to see the purpose in their journeys.

Healthy Relationships Matter

Stuff is just stuff – we get it, we give it away, we lose it, we get some more.  The sooner you see stuff as temporary and practical, the less you’ll allow it to stop you from making decisions you ought — healthy decisions that lead you to becoming more of yourself and the best of yourself.

People, not stuff are of true, lasting value whether they remain part of your life or not! That always means allowing their individual growth, but that can only happen when you value your own so much that you wouldn’t allow “love” to stifle your own.

Say it with me:

Life is NOT Unfair!

To truly love is to be clear that we’re all playing roles in each other’s lives and few of those roles will last a lifetime. So play your role as long as it’s healthy, with a willingness to move on or let go – appreciating the opportunities to have known and learned from each person, and grateful to have contributed to their lives. Roles are usually for a reason or a season, rarely a lifetime.

Things and people are for our enjoyment and you should expect that they will change. Change is inevitable, but healthy is always a choice. And if (more likely when) those ties change, learning to live with a fluid mindset sets you and everybody in your life, free! Free to evolve as each life changes. Learn to live, unattached.

Embrace that no thing and no body is yours! That’s living in the Grown Zone!

Lovingly,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy relationship principles are the same regardless of the type of relationship, including parent-child, sibling, as well as romantic. If you haven’t picked up our book grab it now.

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