When Letting Go Doesn’t Work

By in Mastershift

We all know that letting go of situations where we have been wronged is a sensible thing to do. It brings relief from tension, bitterness, revenge, defensiveness and other emotions and behaviours which are held alongside the memories, but for so many people it is one of the most difficult things to actually do successfully.

Having discussed this topic at length with many people who struggle with both forgiveness and letting go, it is clear that in every case where letting go is a problem, there is a part of the psyche working to keep bad memories in place. This can be despite the individual wanting to let go and practising forgiveness, over and over for the same situation.

It is often useful to consider the brain and the psyche working as a kind of computer system for us, and when looking at this subject, the computer model is indeed very helpful. In this scenario, firstly we can identify that there is a programme running in the computer which is keeping bad memories and unwanted feelings in place which we don’t want, but if we have not worked out why we have installed that programme, deleting it is unsuccessful, and it will keep reinstalling itself whilst we are asleep. I like to imagine this programme as a kind of internal barrister doing a very very good and efficient job of keeping old case files in order, up to date, and readily at hand, in order that when the cases come up, we will be ready to defend ourselves with utmost precision and will have every detail at our fingertips. This part of us is trying to keep us prepared for attack or criticism.

Every time we try to let go of a memory or an upset, or whatever it is, this barrister goes to collect the details from the waste bin whilst we are sleeping and refiles them into the case notes ready for the important time when we will have to persuade the jury that we are not a bad person, or perhaps when someone has wronged us to ensure that they will be prosecuted and we will be off the hook. Conversations go around in our heads, we imagine what we should have said or wished we had done at the time and of course feel all the anger and upset of the situation all over again. The more we push away the thoughts the stronger they become and pop up when we really would like to be enjoying something else! This kind of programming is usually installed at a very early age to avoid over-punishment or cope with injustice in the family, and manifests mainly as a kind of self judgement and self defence. Recognizing such an internal barrister at work is a great step in beginning the pathway of letting go trauma and old anger with ease.

It is really important also to recognize that this internal barrister is a part of us, having our best interests at heart and working very hard on our behalf, effectively carrying out the task with great organizational skills and dedication. They are to be thanked and loved before being told the news that the court cases are not coming to court. There will be no court cases. We are all forgiven, nobody can prosecute us for being a bad person, and our only duty is to put right any wrongs we have done to others in order to restore ourselves and others in dignity and in truth. Therefore it is safe for this barrister now to engage in tying up the unwanted files and putting them in the waste bin forever. That is the new programme. When the new programme is installed and running correctly, when memories come up we can say “delete thought, delete file” and know they will not arrive back again.

This reprogramming can be done once the understanding is in place regarding the wish for a new and different programme to be running, and the barrister welcomed and thanked for what they have been doing on our behalf. In practise this involves using a simple prayer or affirmation along the lines of “ I let go of the need of justice” and “I let go of the need to defend myself”. This tells the internal barrister you no longer need them doing their current job and they can employ the wonderful skills they have in another area of your life. Perhaps you have another job lined up for this part of you to get involved in that needs attention to detail and great organizational qualities! It can take a while to reprogram, and of course can bring some temporary pain and bad moods as the trauma and memories are dealt with, but is a very worthwhile exercise in becoming emotionally free.

About the Author:

Kate Philp is a Christian healer working in Northumberland for Freedom therapy


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