7 Principles to Peace, Joy, and Absolute Passion 

Principle 6: Don’t hold on so tight.

Sometimes, by holding on too tight, you end up losing what you were trying so hard to save. - Unknown.

In the novella Of Mice and Men by author John Steinbeck, the character Lennie accidentally kills his puppy while stroking it. In his efforts to get what he wants, the feel of soft fur, he holds on so tightly he kills the thing he most wanted and the source of his pleasure.

Some may feel they must be in control of a situation or person to get what they want. We can learn from Lennie that by keeping such a tight grasp, all is lost. The paradox is that in letting go of feeling like we need to control (hold on tight), we actually gain that which we were seeking. Control is typically a big issue for many of us, which is why the subject has appeared not only in this principle but also in Principle 2: Be growth-oriented, not close-minded and Principle 4: Thrive where you are. I invite you to take a moment to look back on those now as a refresher.

We can also hold on or hold out waiting on everything to be perfect. This strive for perfection could lead to paralysis by analysis whereby we get stuck in the act of making something better (perfection) and never release it or ourselves for the good intended. Rather, think through, consider possibilities, be prepared, and then just do it. You can make adjustments and corrections along the journey.

The work and insights in this and all previous principles lead to a valuable lesson: Don’t get attached to the outcome!

Let me explain. A woman I know had a vision that included first, living near water, then, meaningful work and ultimately an intimate relationship. Her steps to accomplish this had her looking for work in California (to live with a water view). Well, she met someone (out of order according to her plan) and then got a job offer to live in Florida (again not in order according to her plan). She almost rejected the offer immediately but realized that much of Florida has water views. She is now in love, living on the water in Florida and has an amazing career. Had she been so attached to California being the destination to live near water (the outcome), she would have missed out on what turned out to be much better than she ever dreamed.

Keep your vision in mind, plan accordingly, and take action that moves you closer to fulfilling your vision. But, don’t hold on to the details so tightly that you miss other possibilities to fulfill your vision beyond your wildest imagination.

The only thing that is constant is change. - Heraclitus

As milestones are achieved and steps or stages of your plan and goals are accomplished, be sure to celebrate your successes. Heck, I suggest that you even celebrate when you update your plan in response to changes. This means you are awake, aware and conscious! Society will tell us we should quickly move from one thing to the next, there is no time to waste, or what matters is the next thing you get done. Well, the next thing just may be a celebration – plan for it! Take the time to truly and fully live in the present moment by celebrating your successes. Anxiety builds when we jump from one thing to the next to the next, always looking ahead. We cannot live in the future because it is not now.

Abound in grace,


P.S. – If you ever have questions, feel comfortable reaching out to me (Click here)