This past year has taught me why it is so important to celebrate the end of things in our lives, just as much as we tend to celebrate the new beginnings that occur. For the first time ever, I saw the aftermath of the damaging things that I’d continued to allow in my life. I was so comfortable with the pain, the struggle, and the constant disappointment happening in my life that I normalized them. And when you normalize something, the thought of ending it, is actually scarier than holding on. What makes matters worse, is that not all damaging things that we have normalized are painful when it’s happening in the moment—only adding to why it can be so difficult to detect, and to then make the conscious choice to end things before they become damaging.
It truly isn’t until a major life event, or in this case, a global event happens, that we acknowledge and assess the damaging things that we have normalized in our jobs, relationships, and most importantly our selves. The pandemic made a lot of us vulnerable and uncomfortable seeing how damaged we really are. For the very first time, people have begun ending those things, and walking away from them, during one of the most uncertain times in their lives. Doing so, takes bravery and deserves recognition. That’s why I believe it is so important for us to not only talk about the things we ended but to celebrate the endings too.
The END of that Job
During the pandemic, people decided – enough is enough! Whether they were let go, quit, or just decided that their health was too important to risk by working with the new threat of Covid-19, they left their jobs. For some, it was realizing just how toxic their work environment was, for others, being called an “essential worker” without being appropriately compensated for the sacrifices made, was the last straw. The pandemic allowed us to see not only the damage, but the leaking holes within those organizations. Yeah, the money helped pay our bills, but it won’t help us recover from the very real emotional, mental, and physical consequences of a stressful work environment. When you become mindful of the damages caused by your current job, all of a sudden, writing that resignation letter feels a bit easier to do.
The END of that Relationship
During the pandemic, romantic relationships that we once desired so badly, now became pointless, as the things we once desired about them, were no longer easily accessible to us. Yes, I mean ending those toxic relationships that you normalized as love. Even for the relationships that made us grow, we also had to let go because once the lesson is learned, there’s no need to repeat the course. And realizing that some of our friends were actually our enemies who liked to stay close enough just so they could see us fail. Wherever you may fall on the spectrum of relationships, you know it’s time to let go when those relationships no longer serve you and your journey—and the pandemic helped us figure out which ones to end.
The END of the Old Version of You
What’s beautiful about being able to end things that no longer serve you, is that you don’t need another pandemic to see what other areas of your life may need some work. When you finally make a conscious choice in accepting that, “this is no longer for me,” you start to recognize your own value and worth. You won’t have to wait till you’re having a mental breakdown, or be in another pandemic, to finally say no. Slowly but surely, you’ll begin saying YES to saying NO to those things, people, and behaviors that have been crippling your growth. It’s a constant choice, and a lifelong journey to welcome the endings in your life; it’s hardly easy, but extremely necessary. But watch, in no time, you’ll be able to assess things easily and take a moment out of your hectic day to ask, “is this part of my plan?” This adjusted mindset is a new version of you that only exists because the old you allowed that change. And for that, appreciating the end of the old you makes the new you even better.
So why not celebrate?! You deserve it and I am so proud of you for ending those things. This pandemic showed us that it is definitely not easy ending things that we didn’t even realize were causing us so much damage. Ending that job, relationship, and saying goodbye to the old version of you is a challenging decision to make. And despite not knowing where the future will take you, what is known is that you stopped the damage from continuing. With your choices to make peace with the past, let it go, and move forward, you’re acknowledging and giving gratitude for your ending, and making way for a beautiful beginning to commence. I believe in you, let’s let it go!
Thessiana Shama Mesilus merges the art of storytelling and psychology throughout her content. She founded Shama Works that serves as a creative platform to help individuals lead, grow, and heal from within or wherever there is a story to be heard.