The more I live this life the more I am sure that in order to get anything I have to be willing to let some things go. Sometimes what I need to let go feels very precious – until I release it and realize that what shows up afterward is even better.
I often tell a parable to illuminate this point:
Let’s say you’re walking down the road one day, completely minding your own business, carrying a gold coin held tightly in each fist because they’re the only gold coins you’ve ever had and you want to keep them safe. And, as you’re walking down the road, minding your own business, you happen to meet the leprechaun at the end of the rainbow, sitting by his pot of gold.
He says, in his best Lucky Charms voice: “Good day to you! Dip your hands into this here cauldron of shining gold coins and you can keep whatever you can hold.”
Now is the moment of decision for you.
Do you hold tightly to the two gold coins you have – hey, they’re a sure thing! – and try to scoop with closed fists? How much gold do you think you can gather when your hands are closed?
Or, do you open your fists – maybe losing your two precious gold coins – so you can use your open hands to gather as much as you could manage?
I know myself and I know that I would, without hesitation, make my hands as big as they could be and attempt to scoop up twenty or thirty gold pieces – even if I ended up losing the two I came in with. This is probably why I’ve been able to keep my business running since 1997 – I have a high tolerance for risk and for not knowing how things will turn out.
[The truth is I generally assume things are going to turn out all right and you know what? They almost always do.]
However, if you have a high need for certainty, control, comfort – well, you might just tip your hat to the leprechaun and keep walking down the road. Because, for you, the assurance of your two gold coins matters more than the risk of losing them.
And this is where people get stuck. The proverbial bird in the hand. The demon you know. The at-least-I-know-what-to-expect.
For all of us, though, there are times when the comfortable becomes uncomfortable. When the demon you know becomes a demon who’s destroying you. When the bird in your hand flies away. When the rules change abruptly or no longer apply.
And those are the moments when you have to – must – let go.
It’s so hard. It can change your definition of yourself. It can hurt.
But to become unstuck – to be happy and fulfilled – you must let go of those two gold coins you’ve been clutching in your tight little fists for so long, and begin to claim the treasure that’s being offered you.
Open your heart and mind. Rethink your assumptions. Allow your open hands to scoop as much as you can hold.
I promise you – it’s right here for the taking.