The Shift from Attachment

One of the many reasons I loved Wayne Dyer’s writing so much is because he seemed to connect to some of the same lessons I’ve experienced over my life. Having been in the recovery field and having worked my own program for so many years, I’ve learned to love some of those 12-Step Slogans. The slogans are used so routinely at times that they can seem trite. But in the context of immersing yourself into the program, they can become empowering. My favorite has always been Let Go and Let God.  Just saying it, or thinking it gives me a sense of freedom from carrying the burden all alone.

Below are some excerpts from Dr. Dyer’s book THE SHIFT, Taking Your Life From Ambition to Meaning that explain his perception of this concept:

Perhaps the greatest lessons of my life have revolved around the slogan of the recovery movement: “Let go and let God” – a notion that involves relinquishing ego’s attachment to, or fear of, something. The single most pronounced attachment for most of us during the morning of our lives is the attachment to being right! . . . Letting go of an attachment to being right is a fairly simple exercise.

Most stress results from hanging on to beliefs that keep us striving for more, because ego stubbornly refuses to believe we don’t need something. When we make the shift . . . we replace attachment with contentment. Chasing and striving – and then becoming attached to what we chased after – is a source of anxiety that invigorates Ambition, but it won’t satisfy the need for Meaning at our soul level. . . .

Dyer explains that one exercise he used to let go of an attachment to being RIGHT was to say “You’re right about that” in the middle of a discussion.  If you just can’t go that far and really believe the other person is wrong, then maybe you can ease into it by saying, “That’s an interesting way to look at it.  I’ll give that some thought.”

Another practice to break an attachment is to clear out the garage, cupboards, and closets. Let go of material possessions, and practice not being attached to them. If they haven’t been used in the past 12 months, they belong elsewhere.

Something else I do is to ask myself, “am I going to be upset about this in a year. . .6 months. . . tomorrow?” When I can back up & look at more long-term effects of my interactions with other people or even with material possessions or strongly held beliefs, I usually find that my perception begins to change.  It’s often a slow process, but I am able to see situations and people from a different perspective.

This need to be right is so prevalent in our country right now, with the political environment becoming more and more antagonistic. It’s easy to get caught up in all the emotion and let it interfere with our personal relationships, if others believe differently. Any attachments we have as human beings are human obsessions.  I encourage you to back up a little and open yourself to the possibility that, at another level, they are meant to help you understand yourself – NOT TO DEFINE YOURSELF.

We are all spiritual beings who have come here to learn.  Maybe that attachment you have is part of the lesson.  ?  Only when you can truly release it, will you learn from it.