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Let Go – Take Control

Years ago, when I was helping design and write a ten week class on living with chronic illness for a large HMO, I designed the following handout.  I share it with you today.




If there is a meaning in life at all, then there must be a meaning in suffering. Suffering is an ineradicable part of life, even as fate and death.  Without suffering and death, human life cannot be complete.”   Victor Frankl


To experience freedom and create meaning in our lives, we must “let go” of the past while taking “control” of the present and future.


Letting go means

  • Removing my masks – becoming honest with myself and others
  • I can laugh – I can cry – I can feel my pain – and it’s okay
  • Transcending my fears: facing death, disability, hardships, disappointments
  • Grieving my losses
  • Asking for and receiving help
  • Acceptance of those things I cannot change


Taking control means

  • Discovering the real, genuine, authentic me
  • Spending time discovering the real me
  • Focusing on what I can do – not what I can’t do
  • Choosing hope over despair – the positive versus the negative
  • Soaring like an eagle
  • Believing I have choices and that I am making those choices every day
  • Enjoying each step forward – there is no step too small or too large
  • Looking for and finding opportunities within every situation


Problems, disappointment, life situations CANNOT keep you from

  • Exploring new options
  • Setting new priorities and goals
  • Living life to the fullest
  • Developing a better quality of life


Problems, tragedies, and losses CAN help you

  • Discover great, hidden strengths and determination
  • Create new and exciting meaning for our life
  • Transform “who you were” into “who you are becoming”
  • Develop awareness and appreciation for you and your world


Marlene Anderson, MA, LMHC, NCC

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