Letting Go…

I need to let go.

Maybe you do, too.

Maybe we can do this together, in order to be our own accountability partners.

I’ll go first.

In my life, I have held on for too long. In all sorts of areas. I’ve held on to beliefs that didn’t serve me (“I’m not good enough”, “I’m never going to be ok with me”, “I am an alcoholic and am powerless over it and I have a disease…”).

I’ve held on to relationships that didn’t support my growth (“They will change…”, “It will get better when….”, “It’s me, not them…”).

I’ve held on to vices that didn’t nourish me and in fact held me back from living fully (alcohol, cigarettes, caffeine, junk food, shopping…)

And the list goes on.

But what I’ve found in recovery is that, sometimes, we need to let go of the very thing we feel the need to fight to keep in our lives. And what I’ve come to realize is that forcing things that are no longer serving me only causes pain. I simply prolong the effects of it through the choices I make. Often, I make the pain much worse through the act of holding on.

If you’ve ever tried to quit a bad habit, you will understand this feeling. Quitting smoking, for example, is harrrrd. But by quitting and then going back to smoking a few days later, we simply prolong the pain.

And it’s these acts that keep us from living with freedom in our lives.

Holding on when we know we need to let go is like Einstein’s definition of insanity, “Doing the same thing over and over expecting different results.”

Letting go has been a powerful tool in my recovery (“recovery”, by the way, is just code for working on myself to gain a greater sense of self-love, self-acceptance, inner strength and self-respect). It took me a long time and a lot of inner work to change my beliefs, rid my life of toxic relationships, create boundaries with others, change the way I nourished myself and, most importantly, change the way I viewed and spoke to myself.

It’s an ongoing process and I certainly don’t have it all figured out, but like a muscle, I get better at it with practice.

If you struggle with holding on to things and people and thoughts and anything else that doesn’t serve you, I encourage you to grab a fresh sheet of paper or new page in your journal and ask yourself two questions. Ready? Let’s go.

Question # 1. “What am I holding on to?”


Question #2. “Why do I want to keep it?”

When I know more about why I want to keep it, I can argue against both sides. I take the side of holding on and I list all the reasons I should keep it in my life. I really wear that decision, like a jacket. Then, I take the side of letting go and I go through the same process. And I see how that decision feels. And I decide.

I decide which one feels better.

Getting clear (and real) about what we are keeping in our lives that is holding us back and then getting close to why we want to keep it helps us get off autopilot and puts us back in the driver’s seat. We are able to have eyes wide open…and change can only come with awareness as a first step.

They say that “if it is meant for me, it will be”. And I believe this to be true. I believe that when we can let go and allow, then God or the Universe or the moon or the sunrise shows us what’s next for us; and what’s next for us wouldn’t have been available had we continued to hold on to what was no longer serving us. What I know for sure is that I do not hold all the answers. There is a wisdom greater than myself at work, and by surrendering to that power, I release myself from so much unnecessary pain.

Being able to recognize when to let go has been a tool I’ve used that has held some of the greatest lessons of my life. This work has been fundamental to my recovery and personal growth and I hope this exercise serves you, too.

Because I want you to love your life one bite at a time.



P.S. For anyone struggling with alcohol addiction, I encourage you to watch this interview with Annie Grace, author of This Naked Mind (it's actually required reading in my work with clients). She teaches us the power of our own mind and how we can use it to let go of the drug that is no longer serving us and create the life we actually want to be living. Her work is outstanding.


P.P.S. Want some healthy goodness to show up in your inbox daily? Then I hope you'll sign up to my 14 Days of Wellness! Simply enter your name and email address to begin receiving positive daily intentions around your mental and physical health. It's free, with no diets, products, challenges or catches...just a chance to remember how amazing your brain--and body is--for 14 days.

P.P.P.S. Speaking of brains and bodies, on April 21 & 22, 2018, Roger and I, along with our team, are hosting The Healthy Brain and Body Show in Ottawa for a second year. We are so excited to bring this show back even bigger and better! We would love to see you there as an attendee, where we have so much we want to share with you. We can't wait to explore, connect, learn and shop at the show WITH you! Please say hello if you come. Roger and I will both be there the entire weekend. It would be a thrill to meet you. 🙂

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  • Joanne Florin

    Reply Reply March 27, 2018

    Sarah, what a beautifully written piece. I’ve been alcohol free for over two years and my life has changed so much for the better. I don’t identify as an alcoholic, but I do identify with wonderful, smart women like you. I love reading everything you write. You’re such an inspiration. Thank you for sharing.

    Joanne Florin

    • Sarah Roberts

      Reply Reply March 28, 2018

      I am so glad it resonated. Congratulations on 2 years! That’s HUGE… I hear you on life being better. As Laura McKowen always says, “We are the luckiest.” I am so happy to be connected and thank you so very much for your beautiful words. You inspire me! Stay close. xo

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