Alissa’s blog was featured on the Wharton Magazine Blog.
Letting go is a difficult concept in business and in life. Part of you feels like you’re losing or failing at something. The other side, though, is you’re opening yourself up to new possibilities. The concept of letting go matters because you can’t hold on to and stay open to new possibilities at the same time. You have to choose.
Missed opportunities abound in careers, relationships, personal growth, finances and healthy living. For example:
Perhaps you dislike your company and your boss but continue to hold on and forgo working in an enjoyable role with a mentor who would have developed your leadership skills.
Perhaps you’re holding on to a job at a great company, with a fancy title, but which prevents you from pursuing your passion.
Perhaps you’re retaining a nice employee who is doing a poor job and holding back your organization, while at same time preventing the employee from finding a more appropriate role.
Perhaps you’re holding on to responsibilities that you would be better off delegating.
And perhaps you’re holding on to a personal relationship or a business deal which serves neither of you, as opposed to having a relationship that enhances your life.
We’ve all done our share of each of these; I know I have. Every step forward you don’t take is a step you give up on your journey to fulfilling your potential. You may think this conflict weighs only on your life, but it can have an impact on your partner, your family, a team, an organization, a community and ultimately, our society.
The issue is finding the right balance. I’m not suggesting you quit your job today if you’re not completely happy. Nor am I suggesting you break up with your significant other. But pause and do an honest assessment by asking the following:
1. What are you holding on to?
2. Does it have a positive or negative impact on your business and your life?
3. Can you impose a deadline to re-evaluate and make a decision?
4. If you had no constraints, could you turn that something you are holding on to into something positive? If so, what would it be?
5. What three steps can you take this week to make progress?
These questions may seem simple, but they can be challenging to answer and take time to put into practice. Our work is to align what we know and what we practice. Success is not an overnight game.
Both choices—what to hold on to and where to let go—are scary so you might as well make the choice with some positive upside. It can take time but know that it’s possible!
I’d love to hear what you need to let go of to move to the next level in your career and life. Let me know below in a comment, or feel free to directly email me.