The past two years for me have been all about letting go and leaving things behind. My house, my furniture, and most of my possession live half a world away. Beyond that, I’ve released, or at least loosened my grip, on a lot of other things, including friendships, aspects of my culture and identity, beliefs, and fears.
Even before we left America for Australia, I was a big declutterer. I often felt like I was bailing water from a sinking ship in a desperate attempt to stay afloat. The physical move just sped the process along. Over and over again, I have been letting go of things and ideas that felt heavy and weighed me down.
And all of this letting go has changed me. I had been thinking of it as a transformation, until something I heard on The Goodlife Project podcast shifted my thinking. There is a lot of talk about transformation. What if, instead of transformation, it’s liberation we’re seeking? What if we’re not meant to become something new and different at all? Rather, we’re meant to grow in ways that help us remove all the barriers that keep us from being our true selves. Maybe there’s no need to transform into anything new at all. Maybe what we’re really looking for is a liberation. Setting our true selves free. Think of it as clearing away the rubble to reveal the buried treasure. The treasure was there all along, we just needed to clear away some debris in order to find it.
This reminds me a little of Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I know not everyone loves her method, but I kind of do. I think a common misconception is that you have to get rid of most of your stuff. What or how much you discard really doesn’t matter. Those things are not important– that’s why you’re getting rid of them. What matters is what you keep. This is where the external and internal worlds overlap. In both, we want to clear away the unnecessary, the clutter, the noise, and reveal the joy-sparking gems hidden beneath. We’re liberating what’s already there, not transforming it into something new.
At the end of the day, here’s one thing to remember: You are already enough. You don’t have to become someone new. We are here to grow and learn, but all of that expansion doesn’t mean that we are supposed to become a new people. Maybe we’re supposed to become more of who we already are. Maybe we’re supposed to learn where our true selves begin and end so we can peel away all the layers that are not us and that keep us from revealing our real selves.
What do you think? Do you prefer transformation or liberation?