To Let Go is to Confront – Leadership is a Choice #57

hands dropping sand

Jessica Soroky continues her series Leadership is a Choice.

 

Letting go has been a concept I have long struggled with. When entering The Leadership Gift Program it continued to challenge me, and frustrated me more than anything. I never understood anyone who told me to “just let it go.” My answer was almost always – “How?”

I wish I was about to write a witty quick tip guide to how I learned to let things go but that’s not what this is going to be. I am a self-aware control freak who is extraordinarily comfortable with confront and challenging myself to be open to an alternative way of processing. 

And I am embracing that letting go is to confront – in its own right.

Quick reminder: Confront is not always a negative thing. To say I am comfortable with confront is not to say I enjoy confrontation on a regular basis. Confront simply means “to face.”

Knowing what it means to face I have finally been able to label the feeling I have experienced since I was a child when something upset me. Until I faced it and felt that it was closed I was unable (more so unwilling) to let it go. 

I still struggle with this desire to always confront as a tool to get closure. I choose everyday to be a part of a blended family. This means the life that used to only be me, controlled by me, and impacting only me is now filled with other people, little people, and the people that are my partner’s past. I have control over none of them.

Take it out of the personal realm, and instances where we are not in control at work are even more frequent.

So when something that is not within my control happens to upset me I have a choice to make.

I can choose to allow it to take even more power away from me and contort my emotions to those of negativity, sadness or whatever other nonproductive emotions that may be easy to gravitate towards.

Or I can choose to let it go.

What I have begun to realize is that letting it go can be its own freeing version of confront. It is the ultimate control – controlling my emotions and my mind not allowing another person or their words, or actions to have any effect on me.   

With the choice to let it go comes an opportunity to practice acceptance and choice simultaneously. To let it go I ask myself how I created and chose this situation? If I want to continue to choose it (continuing to be a part of a mixed family) then in order to let whatever is frustrating me go – I accept that this is a consequence or side effect of that choice.

I choose him.

I choose what comes with him.

And with a deep breath I let it go. 

Translate that to a work situation – whatever the frustration is, do I still want to choose the job?

If yes, then I have another opportunity to practice acceptance. 

I choose the job. 

I choose what comes with it.

With this clear mind above the line it becomes a lot easier for me to look at the situation for what it is and quickly create a plan to address it.

 

If I’m being honest with myself the feeling of being out of control is what drives my intense desire to face a situation or a person because in my mind, when I face them I will re-gain control even if it’s just a tiny bit.  

Digging deeper I can see too that wanting to face another person is rooted in a yearning to change them. Which I am well aware I am never going to be capable of – no one can change another.

All of this leads to me to the “Well, s**t” moment –

Letting go is to confront. Letting go is the highest level of control I know at this point. Letting go gives me back my power.  

 

 

Jessica Soroky, CSM

IMG_3285Jessica is a Certified Scrum Master with over three years of practice in agile delivery and seven years of team leadership. She is also the youngest participant in The Leadership Gift™ Program and its growing worldwide community of leaders and coaches. After five years of nonprofit development through Nellie’s Catwalk for Kids, Jessica continues her leadership journey in state government, not-for-profit, and private sector leadership studies.

 

Posted in Responsibility on 08/30/2016 01:04 am
double line
responsibility.com logo dark circle