Holding On

What on earth are we holding on to and WHY?

What does our holding on list look like?
Are we aware of WHY we hold on to anything?
Are we aware of what holding on does to our body?

Dear World

We all know that holding on means we are not naturally able to let go of someone or something, so that we can move on in life.

We all have our reasons, our justifications, our story and our excuses for WHY we choose to hold on and not discard something that is not supporting us to evolve.

We all know that it makes sense to let go of things we hold on to, as it no longer serves us in anyway.

We all know that we can take the Responsibility in bringing an end to that which is not working for us.

Can we relate to any of the following or admit this is going on for us every day?

ALL have been taken from real life examples.

We hold on to our breath before stepping out to face the world every day.

We hold on to sentimental things to give us a memory of days gone by.
We hold on to fake flowers that just keep on collecting more dust.
We hold on to toys from the past that have no use whatsoever.
We hold on to fluffy teddy bears from our childhood that smell stagnant.

We hold on to an inflated balloon from our birthday 2 years ago as we like it.
We hold on to pretty things that seem too expensive to give away.
We hold on to jewellery we will never wear but can’t bear to get rid of it.

We hold on to those expensive shoes from the Christmas sale that we have never worn.
We hold on to our old boots as they remind us of our youth days.
We hold on to that fancy dress that is two sizes too small, ready for our diet.
We hold on to clothes that no longer fit us but hope they will one day.
We hold on to handbags like there was going to be a handbag famine.

We hold on to old batteries that need recycling but we need to check they are dead.
We hold on to a remote control for a TV that is long gone out of our home.
We hold on to ipads and smartphones that actually don’t work.

We hold on to electronic wires and other useless items knowing they have no use.
We hold on to a range of videos but have no video player.
We hold on to CDs but we have moved on to digital since.
We hold on to lots of books as it looks good and makes us think we are intelligent to others when they visit our home.

We hold on to old crockery just in case one day we might use it.
We hold on to that old pot that stinks but we can’t seem to throw it out.
We hold on to Christmas presents that we really don’t want and don’t like.
We hold on to wedding gifts in case we are asked by the donor if we liked it.

We hold on to our kids’ school books but they have grown up, had children and moved on.
We hold on to a drawer full of baby clothes and the kids have got married.
We hold on to that garment we knitted that is years old that no one wants.

We hold on to garage full of we don’t even know what, but we just keep it.
We hold on to a loft full of items that we cannot let go of and it makes no sense.
We hold on to a cellar full of this and that and dread the thought of letting it go.

We hold on to storage bags in our cupboards, of stuff we have forgotten about and know we will never ever use.
We hold on to clutter under the bed that we have not looked at in years.
We hold on to pictures and paintings in case we move house but have not done so in three decades.

We hold on to tinned foods and long-life packets of food in case a war comes.
We hold on to pens, paperclips and used bags in a drawer that is never cleaned.
We hold on to freebies and other junk that we just seem to collect.
We hold on to empty bags and empty boxes of all shapes and sizes.

We hold on to dusty pot pourri that is so old it lost the smell aeons ago.
We hold on to dead plants in the hope they may just come alive again.
We hold on to medication from our parents who passed away 2 years ago.
We hold on to wads of cash at home, in case a rainy day comes and we need it.

We hold on to nick nacks that have no meaning or purpose.
We hold on to photos and they just seem to keep growing and taking up space.
We hold on to our tools from a trade we no longer have as it was decades ago.

WHY do we hold on to the childhood teddy bear and we are now in our 50’s?
WHY do we hold on to the photos that cause us nothing but pain?

WHY do we hold on to clothes in our wardrobe that have never been worn?
WHY do we hold on to the shoes that will never ever be worn again?

WHY do we hold on to that dress that has been the wrong size for decades?
WHY do we hold on to socks with holes when we know we have new ones?

WHY do we hold on to a drawer full of stuff we have no intention of using?
WHY do we hold on to that hat our grandparents left us but we will never wear it?
WHY do we hold on to stale food in our fridge that needs clearing out?

WHY do we hold on to a loft/attic full of stuff we will never even look at again?
WHY do we hold on to clutter in our garage space and not use it for our car?

WHY do we hold on to junk and paraphernalia that holds no value?
WHY do we hold on to post that has not been opened in years?
WHY do we hold on to old news when the world and its brothers have moved on?

WHY do we hold on to emotions and bury them inside our belly by overeating?
WHY do we hold on to those hurts that we know are stopping us from truly healing and moving on?

WHY do we hold on to that anger when we know we just need to feel it?
WHY do we hold on for dear life when our body is saying No?
WHY do we hold on to old friendships that are hurting us every time?
WHY do we hold on to relationships that are nothing but abuse?

WHY do we hold on to that remark someone said years ago that hurt us?
WHY do we hold on to that negative comment on social media that is a lie?

WHY do we hold on to that painful memory that was years and years ago?
WHY do we hold on to that ugly stuff that our father once said in a bad mood?
WHY do we hold on to a spiteful comment from our partner that was said in a moment of madness? (i.e. – it was not them)

WHY do we hold on to that lovely nice stuff that we know leaves us cold?
WHY do we hold on to that painfull moment that keeps us bashing ourselves?

WHY do we hold on to other people’s stuff when we know it is not for us?
WHY do we hold on to our deep hurts that stop us from really living life?
WHY is holding on so comfortable for us and Letting Go so challenging?

WHY do we hold on to our bladder when we need to go for a pee?
WHY do we generally avoid going for a poo at the time we need to?

WHY do we override a natural feeling our body is communicating to us?

Could it be possible that the reason we hold on to anything is because we simply have hurts that we have not got over?

Could it be possible that if we made a choice to deal with our hurts, we would have no need to hold on to anything?

Could it be possible that by not holding on to anyone and anything we find the space we need to be who we truly are?

Could it be possible that letting go of what we are holding on to frees us up inside and our body can breathe its natural breath once again?

What if holding on simply stops us from moving on in life?
What if holding on restricts our body from expanding to its natural rhythm?

What if holding on means we cannot breathe our true breath?
What if holding on means we lose the connection we deeply miss?
What if holding on means we cannot feel the freedom of what life presents?
What if holding on hurts us and everyone else because we are inter-connected?

What if holding on leaves us feeling empty like something is missing?
What if holding on stops us learning the lessons that are here for us?
What if holding on is simply coming from a fear that is total illusion?
What if holding on is like smelly socks with holes that just need to go?
What if holding on is pointless, has no purpose and holds us back?

What if holding on is simply a choice to not evolve with ease?

What if this blog and our Letting Go blog are presenting another way that has RESPONSIBILITY at the core of all our choices?

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Comments 31

  1. This blog made me laugh out loud with its impact.

    A handbag famine! Wishing dead plants back to life!

    There is such truth here for all of us.

    I can say for absolute sure having read this, there is always more to see in the holding on department.

    I for one am left motivated and inspired to go further – to find where those metaphorical smelly socks with holes that just need to go are languishing in my life.

    Thank you Simple Living Global.

  2. This blog is fantastic. There are so many things that is mentioned I have held on to. If we are holding on to material stuff how does that translate to the Emotional stuff we are holding on to. What does this do to our body and well being?

    I can Truthfully say I held on to a lot of stuff ie: family issues, friends woes, work issues and so on for many many years. It did me no favours and made me sick.

    Over the past month, I have been paying attention to the things I do not need and moving them out of my home.
    I feel a lot lighter for doing it and life Feels a lot Clearer.

    I will be printing this blog off as a reminder!

  3. I love the humour in this blog but also the depth it brings and the responsibility it calls for.

    What if holding on hurts us and everyone else because we are inter-connected? a great one to sit with.

    I have experienced letting go of holding on in many areas such as objects, emotions, hurts, beliefs, ideals.. which have transformed my life, my body, my relationships, how I am in the world and seen the impact this has had on others.

    There is always more me to look at and I know I have cupboard that is waiting for just this, harbouring things I don’t need or use. Reading your blog has inspired me get in there and sort it out.

    Super blog, Thank you Simple Living Global.

  4. Holding on – much needed conversation and great blog – particularly as constipation is a commonly accepted condition – in that many of us have had constipation and consider it ‘normal’ when it is a form of holding on – and not normal for our body in truth.

    Why would any of us hold onto toxic waste inside our body?

    And if we look at constipation it literally backs up in our body – which is what holding on does in our lives too.

    I know too well about holding on, and, how much tension it puts the body in as the body then has to multi-task during the day – firstly because it is holding on, and then because you are going about your daily tasks on top of that.

    In the end it is much simpler to let go. And, when I do let go I feel refreshed and energised.

  5. “We hold on to our breath before stepping out to face the world every day.”

    I remember when I started paying attention to my breath and experimenting with breathing a gentle breath. I realised that I was actually holding my breath a lot. I also realised that just before stepping out of the house in the mornings, I would lock down my breath and my chest would tense.

    It was huge to notice I was doing that – bracing myself to the world – holding myself in somehow.

    Noticing it meant I could experiment with not doing – what happens if I just let go?

    Breathing freely and allowing my body’s own rhythm to come through was a massive shift for me and brought a vitality and steadiness. I can highly recommend it.

    1. Jenifer I can so relate to what you say here. I too have done this most of my life, to the point I was holding my breath in my sleep and it was waking me up.

      With the help from the author of this blog I have become more aware when I do do it and change the way I move and interact in my day. What I do notice when I brace myself I feel Exhausted. And what you say about letting go is so true!

      1. It is amazing how much tension builds up in the body, hey Priscilla?

        And it’s also amazing how simply noticing it brings the beginning of the end to it.

        It shows the power of awareness and taking responsibility for our movements.

  6. Holding on to what other people say and absorbing it can be detrimental to our body and health. I have experienced this, it has left me feeling disempowered, unsure, going off on different tangents, feeling tired and exhausted. Letting it go and listening to my own knowing from a connection with my body my energy levels come up, my sense of what is true and what is not true is much clearer and I feel empowered.. which I then trust, feel focussed and go by.

  7. I have been holding on to something all of my life and I really do not know what it is or why I am holding on to it. I just know l must hold on to it in order to feel safe.

    I am getting closer to letting go of this thing by lovingly supporting myself the best I can. Simple Living Global’s Back to Basics program has supported me to do this. It is simple process of taking true responsibility for myself in all parts of my life.

    As I do this my body responds by reconfiguring itself back to a state of being that knows what to do in any situation. And incredibly it knows exactly what to do, taking in account all of humanity.

    When l am in that place it allows me feel connected and know that everything is all right. So no need to hold on to something that is just making me contract away from all the amazingness in our world.

    It is time for me to step out from the shadows and shine my light!

  8. I know in the past when I have held on to something or things it took over my Life literally and it would do the following to me:

    – Talking about it to anyone that would listen (DUMPING ON OTHERS!)
    – Not sleeping- staying awake and re-living it over and over again in my head
    – Eating the wrong foods to cheer me up
    – Smoking to IGNORE the problem
    – Going to Gym to work if off
    – Headaches and high anxiety
    – Taking it out on others
    – Made me miserable
    – Work long hours
    – Go shopping
    – Go out partying to forget about it
    – Added to my already chronic exhaustion
    – Blaming others

    The list is endless and over the past 7 years with the help of Simple Living Global I have taken Responsibility to not Hold on to something. But when I do, take Responsibility to address it.

    I can Truthfully say that when I am holding on to something my body cops it and it does not go away until I Deal with it.

    Why would we want to hold on to stuff that in my case lasted for decades. Something so SIMPLE of LETTING GO rather than holding on makes sense to me. As human beings we make it complicated, when deep down we know the answer!

  9. Why are we holding on to a way of life that is increasingly communicating to us that it is not working?

    This website has been presented facts about what is going on in the world, facts that we can not ignore any more because we see them all around us if we open our eyes.

    A friend who grew up in a major city in the USA told me that he can not go back to this city because of the increasing level of desperate and homeless prople there. It makes him angry and sad.

    And this is a city that has made huge changes in the level of violence in the past 25 years. The violence is being replaced by a giving up ness that l felt when l went there recently. So maybe the violence was a truer picture of what was going on there. What is worse, violence or giving up on life?

    So what will it take to admit that the way we are living is not working and it is time to do something different?

    Simple Living Global is presenting a way of living that has allowed me to deal with my individual issues. We start to make true change by first taking responsibility for our own lives, then when we have cleared out our stuff, it becomes obvious what needs to be done to support humanity to get back on track.

  10. Such a great realisation, Katherine.

    My son brought a vase to me the other day from our mantelpiece and announced it doesn’t have any purpose.

    I love that vase (it looks like a tree), but he’s 100% right. Reading your post, I see it’s actually trophy.

    Time to get rid!

  11. I was thinking about the subject of self and ego this week.

    It seems to me this is a big subject in the holding on department, too.

    A desire to have significance or be recognised in some way.

    What if we could let go of all that too? And just step forward with what is needed – no more, no less . . .

  12. How would it feel to give a prize possession to someone to hold on to for a while?

    I did a weekend workshop were we did just that and worked with what came up for each of us.

    It was a great exercise in realizing how much attachment we can have to an object. An opportunity to ask honest questions about why we are holding on to something.

    For the last 17 years l have been letting go of a massive amount of physical and emotional things. A house, boats, sporting equipment, lots of stuff l thought l might need. Got divorced, my kids grew up and moved away, my parents passed on.

    This was the start of simplifying my life that allowed me to go deeper and feel some old hurts. Because l was able to let go of physical things it allowed space to deal with my emotional issues.

    A very stressful time but there was something inside of me that knew that was what l needed to do. And there was a sense of relief, that l did not have to hold on to all that stuff to be ok.

    The only thing that we really need, we already have, and not only can nobody take it away from us, we can inspire people to remember that they have everything they need, just by being ourselves and shining our light.

    When we do this, which is the reason we are on earth, the physical things that we require to live on this earth are made available to us, because we will be supported when we are part of the plan to bring the human race back together, where we belong.

    1. “Because l was able to let go of physical things it allowed space to deal with my emotional issues.”

      This is so true.

      It brings a whole new dimension to de-cluttering!

  13. Yes Jenifer all that stuff is just in the way of truly connecting to another person. We are so much more then self.

    All l need to do is drop my defensive behavior and everything is there waiting for me.

    1. I can relate to what you say in your last line Ken. I too was incredibly defensive for most of my life. With the help of Simple Living Global I have worked on EXPRESSING more and my defensive behaviour is virtually nil. EXPRESSION is Everything and this is what I have come to realise over the past few years.

      When I was in defensive mode it was my way of shutting out the world when what was said and done to me was too much to deal with. I have really worked on the way I interact with people and this has turned my life around. I now know there is nothing to be Fearful of other than being MYSELF!

  14. It is Autumn in London.

    Yesterday, on the way to school, my son and I both noticed a big fat leaf fall off a tree and tumble slowly down to Earth.

    We talked about letting go, like the tree.

    He said that day he would let go of the ‘crazy school feeling that gets inside’.

    It reminded me how much we all know and how powerful our choices can be.

    1. This is a great one for everyday life Jenifer, to keep checking in with ourselves and let go of anything we take on through out the day like conversations, other peoples beliefs, what we see in magazines, the newspapers, other peoples emotions.. to name a few.

  15. I am down to the last 600 emails from 8,000 in my inbox and it feels great to have addressed this, something I’d been avoiding for a long time. What surprised me was there were emails from years ago sitting there. It feels so much lighter going to my inbox now.

    Thank yoU Simple Living Global for the inspiration to let these go.

  16. Our natural world is a great reminder that letting go of things is essential to allowing the next thing to happen.

    And nature does it so effortlessly and graceful, in the knowing that it is making room for what is next.

    Watching a tree leaf out in the spring, the incredibly complex process that produces a thing that basically converts the suns energy into a form we can use, to be on this earth. Leaves are miracles yet the tree easily lets them go in the fall, in a blaze of color and glory.

    I am trusting this process more, knowing that by not holding on to my beliefs of how l think things should be, l am allowing my life to unfold naturally. In a way that takes into consideration everything in the Universe.

    This concept feels so right. I have tears of confirmation and joy in my eyes and goosebumps on my skin writing this.

  17. That is very cool to read, Ruth.

    Bit by bit, chipping away at the stuff we’ve gathered that’s hanging around, quietly draining us.

    I’m in the process of ditching an old email account that should have been emptied years ago.

    On we go.

  18. Reading this blog made me realise the long array of objects (tools long kept after no longer working in the trade) I have unnecessarily kept. How much lighter and light-hearted I and the world would be if we’re able to let go. How freeing it becomes when you do so.
    How recently de-cluttering my home has allowed me to feel the heaviness of hoarding and the lightness of letting go.
    This is a beginning as I see from previous comments where I can let go of more and I am not the only beneficiary.

  19. I have started to explore when I hold on to stuff what it does to my body. I know for me holding on affects how I breathe, walk, talk etc as well as that stuck feeling in my body. What I mean by that, I feel it in my hips and shoulders mostly. It feels tight and rigid, almost like I am wrapped in metal and I can’t move.

    When I do let go it is like my body reconfigures itself to what it should be – light and flowing.

    This blog is not to be ignored and there is a lot we can learn here!

  20. Top blog Simple Living Global and one that reminded me of what I used to hold onto.

    Both myself and my wife have helped each other with this issue of holding onto stuff – me with my video’s/DVD’s and her with keeping all the empty boxes of anything that we bought for the house like electrical goods, gadgets etc. etc.

    We can look at all the stuff we hold onto and feel that it is impossible to ever let it go.

    I know that’s how I used to feel but the irony was that, as soon as I had let it go, I felt the freedom, the lightness, the space and the clarity of doing so.

    For us, we started in one area of the house and then to all areas of the house.

    It made such a difference that we now regularly look at any area that we feel we are holding onto stuff and either donate to charity, give to friends or throw away.

    Letting go of stuff we have held on for years may seem very daunting, but the benefits far outweigh the ‘believed emotional trauma’ that we think we will go through.

  21. What a fantastic blog and reflection to all of us. When stated this way and in this question form it makes it so simplistic and logical and funny.
    However, I know how easy it is to continue holding onto things that no longer serve me.

    A lot of this blog applies to me!
    It is very hard to let go but easy to hold on makes us feel comfortable a lot of the time although may be harming us!
    For me I hold onto a lot of emotional baggage more than tangible items, which I think is worse.

  22. I have realised how the propensity to hold on can linger.

    Just yesterday I had a ‘this is a good box, it could come in very handy, let’s keep it’ thought. We have zero need for an empty box, whatever it’s potential.

    Staying clear of holding on takes continued focus when you have lived with holding on habits all your life.

  23. This HOLDING ON business is huge and it is in the small stuff too.
    Today is a day 9 for me of a new month and a new year.
    That means a day to make the most of LETTING GO of what I am holding on to.

    The focus was odd bits that needed to go but whilst taking action, I asked myself some questions?
    WHY have I got this nonsense?
    How did it get here in the first place?
    What was the need to hold on to it?
    WHY was it still around if it has no purpose?

    The space felt lighter and very clear. There is zero need in me right now to accumulate any stuff, as I am finding the benefits of having less and Simple Living is working for me.

    Next – I got on to my email inboxes and my pending folder.
    What a clear out and well worth spending my few hours of time.

    I had to keep questioning WHY I hold on in the first place and it comes back to that ‘just incase syndrome’ but these days I am less and less bothered about that and just get on with it, by letting go. I feel an expansion in my body and that confirms it was in the way.

    Holding on is an ugly quality if you ask me and it stunts us, squashes us inside and our particles cannot breathe, as something is in the way.

    We all have attachments to things and emotions and people and whatever else but it is well worth reading this blog and the other ones on this website in particular, CLOSING CYCLES and LET GO as they both relate to this holding on stuff.

    What a waste of time and energy and a waste of life spent on holding on.

    I for one will continue to keep reviewing and refining the way I choose to live, so that there is no room on my radar for holding on and that goes for relationships too.

    I feel new stuff cannot come our way if we are holding on to the old stuff.

    In fact, I would go as far as to say it blinds us from seeing what is ahead and what is possible, if we stop holding on.

  24. Metro News – 17 January 2018

    A recent study by HelloFresh is telling us that £11 billion worth of gadgets are unused in our cupboards.

    WHY do we end up buying spiralisers and bamboo steamers when we never cook or rarely cook even the basic stuff?

    WHY are we happy spending money and then leaving it in a cupboard?

    What if everything is everything and so it does matter if we just hold onto something that has no purpose or use for us now or in the future?

    What if this holding on takes up space, that could otherwise be used to allow more order and flow in our cupboards?

    What if this wasted £11,000,000,000 could be used wisely to support us get out of debt, stay out of debt and then help others?

    What if money wasted is showing us our lack of respect for money?

    What if we started to be more wise with the choices we make and what we hold on to?
    http://simplelivingglobal.com/holding-on/

  25. I was pondering recently how much I had held on to for most of my life. What this did was affect me both in the physical and well being sense.

    Over the past 7 years I have definitely noticed a change in myself as I have let go of things.
    There is still a way to go. But what I do know is I do not want to live a life of holding on anymore.

  26. For most, if not all of my life I have held onto my breath. The holding on is a tightness and an anxiety, a feeling of not letting go, especially in my chest.

    Recently I have become more aware of when I am not holding onto my breath. There will suddenly be a slowing down of my breathing and then I will be aware of the in and out breath and feel the warmth of the breath flowing in each direction. It feels good and I can feel my chest let go and expand.

    As I am writing this comment I am wondering whether in those moments where I let go, even though it seems like a sudden movement maybe unconsciously I have made a choice to let go.

    I will pay even more attention now as to what is going on around me at the times that I am aware that I let go.

    I feel that this will give me more insight into why I am still choosing to hold on.

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