Nathan Peterson

Letting Go of Yesterday's Thoughts

In our culture, we do a lot of categorizing. We love to label things. It helps us cope when things feel uncertain. It's a relief to feel we know something, anything. A label can help us feel like we know. But we don't know.

This may be the one thing we truly can know: no one knows anything.

Labels and categories don't change this. They can provide temporary relief from the discomfort of not knowing, but the relief is an illusion; we still don't know.

Ultimately, labels, categories, and other methods meant to help us feel like we know, only limit our capacity for understanding.

As soon as we think we know, we're closed.

"Ways to cope with things which feel uncertain"... it might as well be on the label of every product marketed to us day and night. What's the first step to market to someone? Convince them they have a problem. Second step? Offer them a solution.

You don't have a problem. Things aren't certain; that is not a problem. Life is uncertain. If this were a problem, then the only solution would be to end life. And that is exactly what society's solutions offer to do.

I don't think it's malicious. Maybe it is. Doesn't matter. What matters is that we see things for what they are. Life's uncertainty is not the problem for which you need a solution.

The need to know draws us out of the deep and into a shallow experience of life. From these shallow waters, we relate to our ideas about life, people, and ourselves, not the real thing.

It's a horrible trade. The worst part is that we're not even aware we're making it. And whether it's malicious or not, society is massively profiting from our willingness to make this trade. The offer is to feel more connected. But we are only becoming more fragmented.

If we want to feel connected in life--with our spouse, our friends, our kids, with nature, with ourselves--we have to let go of our labels, categories, and decisions about. These are yesterday's thoughts.

Yesterday's thoughts are not your spouse.
Yesterday's thoughts are not your kids.
Yesterday's thoughts are not your friend.
Yesterday's thoughts are not you.

Yesterday's thoughts have no dimension. No facets. You can't touch them. They have no weight. They are not real. Furthermore, they're incredibly inaccurate.

You can't know what is. You can only receive it.

Is this resonating with anything in you? If it is, take a minute wherever you are, or go outside for a walk, to purposefully release yesterday's thoughts. They are not serving you. Once you let them go, you will have new space in your heart to receive what is.

Now, you're here.

Feel how your eyes soften when you stop trying to make them see what you expect them to see.

With these soft, now-open eyes, receive what is. Receive the world around you as it is. Receive your child as they are. Receive your spouse as they are. Look in the mirror, receive yourself as you are.

You may not even recognize what you see in this new light. How wonderful.

What a wonderful gift to give to your loved ones: finally being received.

What a wonderful gift to give to yourself.

#freedom #letting go #self-awareness #self-care #thoughts