To let go of all that hurts you, escape the self-limiting illusions that others' opinions can determine your worth; that regret over a past wrong can help you resolve it; that you can't succeed in life if you've faced failure; that you have limited potential. These only embitter and scare you. You're unique; don't nurse insecurity by living under the illusion of others' superiority.
One of the things that makes letting go seem so difficult is the way in which our spiritually asleep mind looks at life: it sees cause and effect as being separate operations. This means our usual action toward anything that troubles us is to struggle with letting go of that unwanted effect. The problem is our usual reaction blinds us to the fact that the actual cause of our unhappiness is not to be found outside of our present level of consciousness.
For example, in any abusive relationship, the individual tends to blame his or her partner for the pain that they continue to suffer. But this perception is born of an illusion. It is based in a misperception born of an unconscious false belief that goes something like this: it is better for me to live with a presently known problem than it is to face a future filled with unknown possibilities. Now, let’s get straight to the heart of the problem.
Before we can deal with — and do away with — the negative effect of any self-limiting illusion, we must first see through and release ourselves from the false perception that’s responsible for it. With this in mind, study closely the following five great illusions keeping you from letting go and living freely. Use each one to help you see that what seems true isn’t always so!
The illusion of feeling useless or otherwise insignificant in life — with its heartache and sorrow — is born of the false perception that the true measure of your worth is determined by what others agree it to be.
The illusion of discouragement — with its bitterness and blame — is born of the false perception that it’s possible to succeed in life without learning through your “failures.”
The illusion of regret — with its seemingly inescapable grief and guilt — is born of the false perception that by reliving some past painful moment, you will be empowered to resolve it.
The illusion of limitation — with its fear and sense of frustration — is born of the false perception that the only resource available to you in the moment of challenge is what you already know as being possible for you to do.
The illusion that others are better, stronger, or wiser than you are — with its painful self-doubt and insecurity — is born of the false perception that you are here on earth to be like someone else.
(Excerpted from The Secret of Letting Go, rev. edition, Llewellyn Worldwide)