As I shared in my last post, I got stuck on the road from Split to Dubrovnik, Croatia. But stuckness can happen to anyone at anytime.

When entrepreneurs like myself are attached (aka stuck), we sometimes get into tantrums. You know what I’m talking about. Like little kids, we only want what we want and we want it done our way! If we don’t get it, we get fussy and out of sorts. Once we start feeling that way, it becomes a downward spiral. Not only does that leave us unhappy, but it closes us off from other opportunities and weighs us down.

Letting Go Exercise

A good way to experience this is to grab a couple of friends and play a game of tug-of-war. Or if you’re too grown up and dignified, just play this game in your head. One side represents your business while the other side represents that single result you’ve been fixated on. The game usually starts with both sides evenly pulling their weight. It looks like the rope is at a standstill, but really both teams are pulling with all their might.

But as we know from gym class, it’s the team who pulls the hardest that wins, right?

With that simple goal in mind, we all become competitive – really competitive. Sometimes being competitive and working towards goals gives you a great sense of accomplishment, especially if you win. But sometimes blind ambition and the need to win leads to dubious behavior. Plus it’s a lot of arm-straining and teeth-grinding work!

Is winning the only possible option? What if you weren’t fixated on winning? You could always decide to change the rules of the game and just let go of the rope. What happens then? Based on the basic laws of physics, letting go of your end of the rope will send the other team tumbling and falling on their rear ends. Not only is this funny, but now you finally get to rest those tired arms of yours! And, once you stop playing, there is a new perspective that you don’t need to play that game. You might find something better to do than tugging at a rope.

So think of your business in the same way. Maybe you’ve been too fixated on things being or looking a certain way. It might be that you’ve gotten so attached to a certain set of results that it’s even prevented you from winning the overall game. Sometimes the best thing to do is to simply let go of that fixated result, drop those blinders, and see what else is out there.

When you become attached to something, it stops the natural flow of energy. You’re in that standstill position in a game of tug-of-war where you’re using all your strength but the rope just isn’t budging either way – and you find yourself stuck.

Take on the challenge of letting things go.