You are changing. We are all changing. The world around you is changing. Just because something was right for you in the past doesn’t mean it still is. This could be a relationship, a job, a home, a habit, etc. It takes a lot of courage to change and essentially let go of things that don’t serve you anymore.
It happens to you slowly as you grow. The more self-aware and reflected you are, the more you realise there are deliberate changes you need to make to keep up with the changes happening around you and within you. This can be uncomfortable. I always say leadership is about being uncomfortable.
“Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.”
– Oprah Winfrey
The lifestyle you’ve been living no longer fits. There are people and habits you’ve known forever no longer align with your values. You cherish all the memories, however you find yourself needing to let go and move on.
If you’re currently dealing with this journey you may feel a bit awkward, and that’s really OK. This feeling is totally normal. I’ve been right there with you on more occasions than I can count.
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“Courage is the power to let go of the familiar.”
– Raymond Lindquist
Here are 8 Courageous Reasons to Let Go and Move On
- Someone’s negativity is rubbing off on you.– Did you know you are the average of the people you spend the most time with? In other words, who you spend your time with has a great impact on the person you are and the person you become. If you are around negative people or people pulling you down all the time, you will become negative. Something to think about. Let these people go. Get people out of your rowboat who are putting holes in your rowboat. This takes courage.
- You have grown apart from someone you care about.– As we grow we find that sometimes the journey takes us down a path where others don’t want to follow. Sad but true, no matter what you do or how much you explain yourself, some people will gradually evolve away from your core values and that new growth.
- You are truly unhappy with your current circumstances.– It’s always better to be struggling at something you love than succeeding diligently at something you don’t like or you struggle with. I will share an example below of how this happened to me. It takes a lot of courage to let it go.
- Your goals and needs have changed.– What was right for you then is not necessarily right for you now. Sometimes the hardest part isn’t letting go but rather realising that you have changed, and then learning to start over with your new truth. It takes courage to focus on your goals, needs and value yourself.
- Fear is holding you back big time.– Part of Courageous letting go and moving on is facing the fears and disappointments of the past that are binding your spirit. Don’t let the illusion of fear control your life and leadership.
- You find yourself living in the past.– If all you do is attempt to relive something that has already happened, you’re missing out. The mental space you create by letting go of things that are already behind you gives you the ability to fill the space with something fresh and new.
- An old grudge is still hurting you.– Holding on to the weight of anger, and resentment will not only hold you back, but also block your present blessings and opportunities. You’ve just got to drop some things to move forward. This takes courage however letting old grudges go is deliberating. Over 14 years, my ex-husband abandoned my daughter and I in China. At the time it sucked (really sucked!) however I used the fire (and anger, hurt, sadness etc.) in my belly to get out there and create a new life for her and I. To this day I don’t hold a grudge and now I am grateful it happened, as I wouldn’t be where I am today. They say the greatest revenge is success (not that I was seeking revenge).
- You aren’t learning anything new.– Leadership and learning are indispensable of each other. All positive change is the end result of learning. Jack Nicholson once said, the day you stop learning, you are dead.
One Small Example of Letting Go
Several months ago I was struggling with the vision and mission of my company LeadershipHQ. I had built over ten years ago from a blog and as much as it is successful, something was missing. The company had great impact around the world and it was making a difference in the world of leadership however the strategy wasn’t working. I was lost and confused. So I worked harder and harder and it didn’t work. I met these two women who said I needed to let go if what I thought LeadershipHQ should be and work on a new strategy and vision. They said I want you to focus on your brand, Sonia McDonald. With tears in my eyes I said I couldn’t let it go and focus on me. It was more challenging than I thought it would be.
They worked with me for weeks and months on creating a new strategy, brand, website, programs, events, workshops and so forth that was more aligned to my values, story and purpose. I still struggled on letting my company go. Then I met someone else who is very successful in my space for a coffee. He asked me where I was at with LeadershipHQ and I told him my story. He smiled and said – YES! I was confused. He said – Sonia, I have been watching your journey for years and you need to be the Simon Sinek of Leadership. I replied – I can’t, I am not Simon Sinek. He said – do you think Simon Sinek thought he was Simon Sinek? You have got this. He was right. I had to let go of LeadershipHQ to become the Sonia McDonald of Leadership. Now I have a wonderful direction and purpose that I love. And stay tuned for a completely new and exciting LeadershipHQ with a new vision, mission and purpose! I hadn’t let go of it entirely however I had to let it go to find it’s new spirit and purpose.
If you want to start becoming a more courageous leader, learn more about my Courageous Leadership Course and Program!
Sonia’s Books – Leadership Attitude and Jus Rock It! Grab them HERE.
Sonia McDonald believes we should lead with kindness, from the heart, doing rather than telling and is known for her mantra ‘Just lead’. She leads by example in all these areas and through her one on one practical coaching, leadership training for teams and organizations encourages others to do the same. Sonia has helped hundreds of people on their leadership journey to become the best version of themselves and in turn, inspire and bring out the best in others.
For more than 25 years, Sonia has been on the front lines of HR. She has held leadership positions worldwide and through experience, research and study come to realize what it takes to be a truly great leader.
Sonia has an ability to speak bravely and authentically about her own development as a leader, personal and career challenges in a way which resonates with her audience. She is recognized as a LinkedIn influencer and has become an in-demand keynote speaker, starts important conversations.
She is an award-winning published author and writes regularly for publications such as The Australian, HRD Magazine, Smart Healthy Women and Women’s Business Media. Sonia has become recognised for her commentary around the topic of leadership, developing work-life balance, championing the up and coming leaders of tomorrow and advocating for women in business and male-dominated industries.
Sonia will give you peace of mind when booking a speaker. She is a proven world-class professional speaker with the skills to “rock an audience”. Her energy, empathy, kindness, sensitivity, and humor will enhance any event she appears.
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