Have you ever tried to get a bone away from a dog that is intent on hanging onto it? They sink their teeth into the bone and hold on. They can play with it for hours before walking away or burying it somewhere.

That’s how I feel sometimes when I’m holding onto something that I won’t release. I can spend enormous amounts of time ruminating over it, constantly revisiting it in my mind, stressing myself out and wasting lots of energy on something that is often out of my control!

Take for example when something goes awry on my computer. I used to spend hours trying to remedy a computer problem. I try everything I can think of to fix the problem when I finally realize I need help and I have to walk away until help arrives. Of course, unlike a dog playing with the bone, I’ve gotten so stressed out and agitated that I need to cool off!

A few days ago I hosted the Personal Development Carnival for Lyman Reed. I spent days going over article submissions and made my selections. I wrote up the entire post, added all the trackback links, sent emails to all the contributors, time stamped it so it would post on time. Everything was all ready to go. And then the blog template went down. To someone new, they might not notice the page looked funny. I saw it immediately.

It was Sunday and I couldn’t reach my web designer. I tried a bunch of things hoping it would reset. No change, I opened and closed my browser with my fingers crossed that it was a computer glitch. I played around with a few things in Wordpress. Nothing. I tried a bunch more things and saw how caught up I was getting. And I realized there is nothing more I can do today. It will have to wait until tomorrow.

Instead of spending any more time trying to fix the blog or thinking about it, I was able to let it go and focus on something else - like reading a book, exercising, going out and doing something fun….

You can be a dog with a bone about conflicts, personal or business challenges, money worries, relationships, fears, negative self-talk……

What do you grab onto? Are you a dog with a bone?

Here are 5 suggestions to unhook:

~ If you need help to resolve something - get it.

~ If you’re making something bigger than it needs to be - shift your perspective to be more realistic.

~ If there is nothing more that can be done for today - accept it and let it go. Tomorrow is another day.

~ If there is nothing more that can be done to improve the situation -accept it and move on.

~ If you need to let something go temporarily to gain clarity, use the break productively so that you can return to it later. You might find you have a fresher perspective to handle things more effectively.

You can recite the Serenity Prayer:

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

If you are still holding on - you are making a choice to be a dog with a bone. Letting it go is up to you.

Bottom line: Pick and choose your battles. Recognize when giving something energy is moving you towards what you desire. Resolution and peace? More money? Productivity? YOUR SANITY? Or, moving you away from your desires? Persistence can cost you more than you realize.

Author's Bio: 

Lorraine Cohen, President of Powerfull Living, brings more than 25 years experience in personal and business coaching, psychological counseling, and sales to thousands of business owners, entrepreneurs, and leaders to have greater business success and personal happiness in their life. She is also the host of Powerfull Living Radio - compelling conversations on business, personal, and spiritual topics. Contact her for speaking engagements and customized leadership programs for your company or organization. Visit www.powerfull-living.biz to learn more about Lorraine’s services, success products, and programs.