How to Know When to “Let Go”

How to Know When to “Let Go”

How to Know When to "Let Go"

We’ve all been there. Whether it be with a relationship, friendship, job, situation… we’ve all had a time in our life where we wonder “should I let go?”. It’s usually a hard decision to make.

Having to make the decision to let go is usually for our own sanity and will most likely hurt in the short term, but will work out best in the long run. So how do you know when to let go? 

Updated: 11/21/2019

You’ve Already Asked Yourself

For me, the biggest flag that you either are ready to let go or you should let go is that you’ve already asked yourself if it’s time. Whether it be through an introspective journal prompt, talking out loud or internally, asking a friend or therapist for help, you’ve thought “should I let this go?” or “Can I handle this anymore?”

By asking yourself these questions it means you’ve been subconsciously (or maybe consciously) thinking about calling it quits. 

I’ve been in plenty of situations where I’ve started thinking “should I just let this go?” but continued to stay in them for months (sometimes years) longer. While not every situation that warrants a “let go” are bad, sometimes they’re just stressful or overwhelming, at the least it’s a signifier that you need a break. 

Related: An Introduction to Toxic Relationships


People In Your Life Are Concerned

Ever been in a relationship where your friends and/or family have expressed concern about your well-being? While not always the case (some people just don’t like certain people) it should be some sort of flag that those around you are seeing something you aren’t. At the least, have a sit down with them and see what their concerns are. Hear them out. See if you can see what they see. 

Hindsight is 20/20. I remember my first relationship where it was pretty toxic, especially for a teenager in high school. I had a close friend tell me over and over again that it was a terrible idea. I would go to her crying about how bad things were and that I wasn’t happy, but I couldn’t let go. She was concerned and told me her concerns. I heard them, but didn’t listen. I lost that good friend halfway through high school because I couldn’t stand up for myself and listen to those around me over my own emotions.

It sucks, and I regret it, but I wouldn’t be who I am now without the troubles I’ve gone through.

Related: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: Review


You’re Overwhelmed, Extra Stressed, or Extra Emotional

I don’t know about you guys, but when I have a situation where I’m feeling like letting go is an option, I get overwhelmed with it all and become extra emotional. Depending on the day I could be either extra sad, where the smallest thing sets me off and I want to cry, or it could be a day where I’m so agitated that the slightest bit of sound that breaks my concentration makes me want to erupt at anyone in sight.

These types of situations can make you extra stressed, causing you to deviate from your normal emotional state. If you find yourself being extra stressed lately and you don’t know why, give a thought to any relationships or situations in your life that could be getting in the way.

Related: What to Do When You’re Overwhelmed with Life


You’re Just Done

This kind of goes along with being overwhelmed and extra stressed, but sometimes there reaches a point of “I’m done”. I’ve been there. 

Say you’re having relationship problems and it gets to a point where you wish everything would just… end. You don’t care anymore and just want all the fighting or stress to stop. 

You’ve basically burnt yourself out. 

Personally, I feel this is the last stage of “let go” before you actually let go. Everyone has a breaking point and you’ve just about reached it.

Related: How to Deal with Mistakes and Grow From Them


Should You Let Go?

This is up to you. Some situations are salvageable. Say you’ve hit a rough spot with work and you’re thinking about calling it quits. But this recently started when a new manager came in, or something out of the ordinary happened. Sometimes things are situational and you can just tough it out until it’s over.

Ask yourself, ‘Will this change be permanent?’, ‘Is there anything I can do to help my situation?’, ‘Can I stick it out for X amount of time until things go back to normal?’. 

But then there are other situations like relationship where you’ve been having the same fight with your partner for months now and nothing is coming out of it. If you can’t come to a conclusion and just put things off for a while until the issue rears its head again, it might be time to let go.

You might be reluctant to actually let go, and that’s normal. But at some point you have to way the benefits of dealing with the same stressors over and over again, potentially getting nowhere, because you’re scared to change.

Related: 5 Tips to Get Your Mind Back on Track


How to Know When to "Let Go"



How do you know it’s time to let go?

  • You’ve already asked yourself if you should let go in some way or another
  • The people you love are concerned about you and your situation
  • You’re overwhelmed with whatever it is that’s going on
  • You literally “Can’t Even” anymore
  • It’s ultimately up to you to decide

While these aren’t fool-proof tips, they’re the feelings and stages I’ve gone through in my own experiences. 


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Do you have any other tips? Have you been in a situation where you had to “let go”


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