Too often, I’m that person who says yes, even when I shouldn’t. Even when I feel like I can’t possibly add one more thing to my plate, I find myself saying…
- Yes, I can update the PTA website at the last minute.
- Sure, I can make homemade pasta for dinner on a Tuesday.
- Of course, I can juggle multiple work projects and not miss a deadline.
- Absolutely, I can help co-lead a new book club with friends and family.
The Centering Skill that I have been practicing recently is Letting Go. One aspect of this skill is to let go of things we can’t control, like how others react or handle specific situations (i.e. the person who cut in line in front of you at the grocery store). That being said, it can be equally as empowering to let go of things we can control. For example, I can often control not adding another thing to my to-do list when I am already overwhelmed. Instead of homemade pasta on Tuesday, how about we make something fun this weekend? Or I am happy to join a book club, but I have too much on my plate to co-lead it.
When I feel my anxiety growing and can tell my resilience is low, I know that I’ve taken on too much and need to practice Letting Go. In the article, “Letting Go: Mindfulness and Negative Automatic Thinking,” it was noted that, “ Anxiety often makes it more difficult to let go, as we get caught up in worry and rumination,” (Frewen et al.). So, when I feel overwhelmed, and my anxiety increases, I try to remember to practice Letting Go. It may be hard to do sometimes, but it is usually what I need the most.
So, if you find yourself a little more anxious, maybe ask yourself if there is something in your life that you could let go of, even if just for now. It might just help you find your center a little more easily.