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i have a tendency to hold on to everything, people, beliefs stories, dreams, feelings, yes, everything. i guess you could say i am an emotional hoarder… | Secret Keepers by Emily Joy Rosen

i have a tendency
to hold on
to everything

yes, everything

i guess you could say
i am an emotional hoarder

and i have been
looking at this lately
to see why
what is driving me
to never let go

and here is what i got…

it is as if i think
that my letting go means
one of a few things

  1. that i am saying
    something that was not okay
    with me is okay
    as if by letting go
    i am admitting defeat
    or worse, resignation
    as if by holding on
    at least i am making
    my preferences known
  2. i don’t know what the future holds
    so i get scared that i might let go
    of something i could need someday
    and then the fear is
    it would never again
    be available to me
    as if by letting go
    i am saying goodbye permanently
    as if by holding on
    at least i am assuring
    i can come back if need be
  3. it sometimes feels weak, like a giving up
    and i see myself as more of a fighter
    not a quitter
    so i don’t want any evidence
    to the contrary
    as if by letting go
    i am acknowledging that i could not
    make it better
    as if by holding on
    at least i am still
    kinda trying
  4. holding on
    can help me justify
    how i am being now
    in a way that is moderately comforting
    as it allows me to take less responsibility
    almost conveniently
    as if by letting go
    i would have to own more fully
    how i am choosing to be now
    regardless of the past
    and my stories
    about why i am the way i am
    as if by holding on
    i am able to explain away so much
    of why i am the way i am
  5. sometimes it feels like i just don’t want
    to put in the work
    so even when i believe
    that it’s best for me to let go
    walk away, say goodbye
    i can find myself looping endlessly
    holding onto what used to be
    or what i imagined could be
    and i know it requires work,
    sometimes a lot of work
    to regain “control” of my mind
    it takes commitment
    to insist on thinking differently
    instead of just allowing my mind
    to run the show
    focusing on what it pleases
    torturing me
    with its compulsivity
    so by holding on
    at least i am not having to face
    this part of me
    that lacks the self mastery
    to choose differently
  6. sometimes i fear
    what i will feel
    because while holding on
    can be a unique flavor of challenging
    it can at least be familiar
    it can at least be its own kind of comforting
    often when i find it hard to let go
    it is because i don’t want to feel
    what i will feel
    as soon as i release
    because in my experience
    even when it is for the best
    even when it is much needed
    even when it is clearly what is happening
    that doesn’t mean it feels good
    that doesn’t mean it’s easy
    that doesn’t mean i feel better immediately
    and so at least by holding on
    i know the suffering i am choosing

humbling to see
how i justify
holding on
often desperately
but awareness helps
and in some cases

when i get clear on what i am doing
when i understand what story i am letting run me
i have a way better chance of releasing
i have a way better opportunity
to let in more of what is good for me
and let go of more of what is no longer serving me

perhaps you see yourself in these
i find one of the most common questions i get is
yes, but how do i let go
how do i move on….

to which i say,
i am not sure for you
but i can say that what has helped me
is getting clear on why i am holding on
in the first place

and then i do what is necessary
to remember what is true for me
to get my needs met differently
so i am no longer relying on
what i know is hurting me
so i can let go less terrifyingly

and i remind myself
that letting go
makes room
for something
something else
i choose

it isn’t always easy
but in my experience
always worth it

always worth it
to reclaim
your mind
your energy
your heart

may you too
let go
of what you
need to

❤️emily joy rosen

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