Attachments: An Ancient Battle


In our lives, we form many attachments and allegiances. Some of our attachments can be good for us, motivating us to be our best. However, if we are not careful, some of our attachments can lead to our undoing from the effects of change, loss, betrayal, or tragedy. Practicing non-attachment enables us to control our emotions and feelings in relation to the attachments in our life, so that we don't allow the attachments to take control of us.

1. Identify why you believe that you have an attachment problem. Were you once a strong adherent to a belief or faith that you have since recanted? Do you still seek out a person who has either abandoned or stopped caring about you? Are there things in your life that you have allowed to define you? Or have you suffered a great personal tragedy or a loss?

2. Avoid forming unhealthy attachments. It is often best to take adopting new beliefs and friendships slowly. Do not waste all of your energy by throwing all of your emotions into a single person or new creed; investigate slowly to avoid disappointment.

3. Learn how to deal with certain attachment problems. Having attachment problems can hamper your progress in life. These need to be dealt with to ensure that renewal can occur and you can continue to grow. The following are some of the more common attachments that hold people back:

4. Stop fearing loss. Attachment to a job, particular people, possessions, or beliefs can mire us in the fear of losing these anchor-points in our life. When things do go wrong, as inevitably they will at times, our grief can stymie our growth and cause us to grind to a standstill. Accept the moment for what it is and believe that what you have now is enough. At the same time, be proactive to prevent yourself from being a sitting duck. Should things not be working out in a current situation, make plans to change your own part in the situation, such as sending out job applications, getting a makeover, or changing your study course, etc.

5. Befriend yourself. Your self-worth should come from within, not from what you perceive that others think of you. Attachment to others gets unhealthy when you're continuing to be around people who are toxic for you just because you're afraid of being alone or left out. By befriending yourself, you won't fear the times of being alone as much, and you will also open up to being available to a wider group of people rather than attaching to merely a few. And strive to maintain healthy relationships with the people you do interact with daily, giving one another breathing space and not expecting too much of others.

6. Stop living an illusion. Although it still matters to strive for a better you, a better tomorrow, acceptance of what is now is vital to living in the moment, in order to avoid the illusion that your happiness or fulfillment relies on contingencies not yet realized. Don't attach yourself to hopes and dreams in a way that excuses fixing things that aren't working in your life right now. Accept things as they are now and work on what you'd like to improve on with calmness and centeredness.

7.Learn to let go of an attachment to feelings. Feelings are powerful but if we let them control us, we are imprisoned by wayward masters. Accept that sometimes we will feel pain and loss, but we can choose to suffer endlessly or to learn and move on. Feelings are better out than in, so expressing them will help you deal with them more productively than bottling them up inside. Write in a journal, write poems, leave anonymous blog posts, write a letter and burn it, or talk to your invisible or even best trusted friend. Find outlets for your feelings so that they don't serve as unhealthy attachments.

8. After you have helped yourself, tell others about how you live. Letting others gain your trust and going slowly in adopting new beliefs is the most practical non-attachment philosophy that you can practice, and you do not have to be a hermit to do it. Teaching others about non-attachment can be helpful no matter what their situation or beliefs. You can talk about it with people, write blogs, tweet; just keep open about your experience so that others can learn too.

9. Understand that all things must come and go

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