That ceiling never was high enough to contain all of me, so I tore it down to sleep beneath the stars. Tonight, I will be free.

Breathe in. Clarity. 

Breathe out. Release. 

Clear away resistance.

Celebrate freedom.

Leave white space.



Make peace.

This is the art of letting go.

Being present, making progress, moving on, getting over it…it’s all a dance between holding on and letting go. And there’s a reason this is hard.

Letting go is celebration and solemnity. It’s moving inward and putting yourself out there. Grieving and receiving. Yes and no. Moving forward and away. Returning and starting fresh. Ritual, ceremony, organic action, improvisation.

Letting go is liberating but also….it’s agony.

Pain and paradise at once. 

If you can breathe into it and take it lovingly, it will be the pain of tearing down the ceiling that gives rise to evolution. This is how you find growth in pain. @ralph_leslie (Click to Tweet!)

But because it hurts, letting go requires intention and patience. This is how you let go consciously.

You may need to let go of something today and tomorrow and every day until your hands learn to trust in the openness that comes with emptiness. Each time, it gets a little easier and you, a little stronger.

It’s in the letting go that we see ourselves clearly again. Once the shock fades and pain subsides, it’s in this space that you discover you are not this body, you are not this wound, you are not this feeling, and this is not forever. 

Letting go gives you space, but it needs space, too. Space brings solace. Space allows expansion.

So, if you need to walk away, then walk away with your head held high. Burn the ceiling and the bridge and the whole darn city.

Or don’t. 

Find a quiet landing place instead. Restore your strength. Repair what’s been broken. And build your palace from there.

Deepen your connections. Seek out and hold on to the people, the memories, the treasures that are most meaningful to you.

Or don’t. 

Purge it all. Empty the closet, wipe the slate clean, chop off all your hair, and reinvent yourself to become more of who you already are.

Go mad. Lose your mind and your reputation. Leave it all behind and be recklessly free.

Or don’t. 

Move in and down. Seek solitude and get back in touch with nature. Go organic. Hydrate. Become more fluid, more tender.

Grieve the loss.

Bury the love letters beside the hatchet.

Celebrate your freedom and leap into the unknown.

Let it be.

Say goodbye.

Say hello and invite them in.

Set them free, set you free.

Forgive, forget, remember, repair. Make amends and accept apologies.

Brace yourself for liftoff and escape.

Be firm.

Make art.

Whatever you do, do it consciously. Let go so that you may hold on to something more life-affirming.

Move in the direction that frees you. I won’t try to define it for you – you’ll know it when you feel it.  

Leslie Ralph is a psychologist, writer, and artist who hopes to leave the world a little brighter than she found it.  Her people are creative, sensitive spirits who crave love and peace, inside and out. Leslie is the author of There, I Might Find Peace: Poetry and Prose, Mantras and Meditations for Peace, Love, and Strength. Download her free gift, a ritual for receiving, a daily ritual for bringing more love and light, clarity and confidence, meaning and connection to your life. You can follow Leslie on Facebook or Instagram.

Photo courtesy of Aziz Acharki.