Roughly 5,000 feet above sea level on The Camino de Santiago, the Cruz de Ferro towers above a gigantic mound of stones. This famous monument stands as a symbol of the collective journey. The tradition is to drop a stone, brought from the pilgrim’s country of origin, symbolizing something each person intends to leave behind. This purge allows space for a rebirth to happen during the remaining 150 mile walk to Santiago. Ironically, I passed the iron cross in the predawn darkness. I remember an outline of stones and an intense feeling of energy, but had no knowledge of the location or significance of this historical attraction. A mistake that will not be repeated on my walk in 2015!
Facing another year’s sunset on Wednesday, like most people, I was in the process of compiling a list of resolutions. Mid stream, I mentally revisited the Cruz, wadded my sheet, and tossed it onto the mound of papers in my trashcan. Instead of a long list of things to do for 2015, I intend to pass the turnstile and leave things behind that will not be revisited or repeated. There is tremendous spiritual power in letting go of yesterday and making space to savor the present moment.
Yesterday happened and there is nothing that can change that moment in time. The past possesses value as a vault for pleasant memories and a classroom for lessons that can be applied to the current moment. Never get caught in the infinite loop of playing the same movie over and over and over and hoping for a different outcome. It is like swimming with an anvil attached to a necklace. Toss that unnecessary boulder on the pile and move on.
11 Tips for Letting Go:
- Meditate and start a yoga practice.
- Focus energy on things you actually control.
- 30 minutes of cardio exercise every day.
- Develop a deep breathing technique.
- Mentally slap yourself into the presnet when you drift into the past.
- Eliminate cable news.
- Delete the blame game.
- Buy 5 copies of A Million Steps and give them to friends.
- Repeat #10.
Happy New Year!