When faced with tough decisions, it can be so hard to make a powerful choice because we so want to know how it will turn out. In this episode, I’ll share my own experience with letting go of the outcome and how it changed the course of my life.
I’ll share 3 examples of how doing what I felt was the best (albeit hard) decision opened the door for even better things in my life.
Listen if you are grappling with two decisions- one that may feel a little easier because it gives a sense of security, and one that may feel like a free-fall.
You’ll learn how stepping into that free-fall has the potential to change everything for you.
I’m Andrea Giles, and you’re listening to the Heal From Infidelity Podcast,
Episode 8, Letting Go of the Outcome.
Hello and welcome to the Heal From Infidelity Podcast where courageous
women learn not only to heal from their spouse’s betrayal, but to become
the boldest, truest, most decisive and confident versions of themselves
ever. If you know there’s more for you than the life you’re currently
living, but don’t quite know how to get there, you are in the right place.
Stick around to learn how to create a life that will knock your own socks
off. Is it possible? It is, and I’m here to show you how. I’m your host,
Andrea Giles. Are you ready? Let’s dive in.
Hey, everybody. Welcome to episode number eight. We’re moving along. It’s
so fun to see more and more listeners subscribing. The podcast has now been
out for about a month, and as of this morning, I have over 1500 downloads,
which is super fun. I love thinking about women all over the world
listening and feeling encouraged, and it just makes me happy to think
about, so thank you for listening. Thank you for being here with me.
Okay, so today I’m going to share with you three different times in my life
that were really pivotal for me, where I didn’t know at all what the
outcome was going to be, and I was willing to do the thing that felt right
to me, and how much making those decisions at the time blessed my life. I’m
sharing them with you because I understand full well that grip that we have
on wanting to know how things are going to end. We want to know. It’s a
sense of control, right? It’s a sense of knowing that you’re not free
falling. It’s like you’re standing at the edge of a bank and holding on,
clawing for dear life like, “If I let go of this, oh, what’s it going to
be? Am I going to feel like I’m in a free fall?” It can feel like that.
But I’m sharing with you today three different times in my life where I
know that me being willing to let go of the outcome changed my life for the
better. And I want you to just listen and see if you can relate at all or
think about times where you were willing to let go of the outcome and how
maybe there are things that you’re holding onto now that you could let go
Okay. Story number one, when I was 16 years old, I moved to a new city in
Oregon, right on the Oregon coast. I was on the cross country team, so I
had started to meet some people there, and I got invited to a party. I knew
hardly anybody, but I got invited to this party. And they were going to go
turn on a particular movie, and at 16, I had pretty high standards for
myself, and I had decided what kind of media I was okay with and what I
wasn’t, and it was a comfort level thing for me. And I pulled aside a girl
that was there who I barely knew, and I said, “Hey, I don’t watch this kind
of movie. I’m not sure what to do.” And I felt really awkward.
Well, she went right out to the whole group of people and told them that
Andrea doesn’t watch this kind of movie, and I got so many weird looks and
questions. One of them said, “Well, your parents don’t have to know.” And I
remember looking at him and saying, “It’s not actually my parents, it’s me.
I made this decision for myself.” Well, in the end, this entire group of
teenagers piled into multiple cars, and they drove me home, and it was
several miles home. And I got home, and I remember walking into my house
shutting the door and plopping on the ground in a ball of tears. I was just
sobbing. I thought that my time in high school was going to be terrible for
the next two years, I was a junior, that no one would like me, that I would
be the freak who wouldn’t watch these movies, and I just was sure that that
was it for me.
Well, the following week, I went back to school and there were people there
who were not at that party who asked me about that, word had spread. And I
just said, “Yep, that’s right.” And they’re like, “Hmm, weird, but okay.” I
want to point out though that even though it was very, very uncomfortable,
I still had this inner sense of peace knowing that I stood my ground. I
knew that I made the right decision for me and that I backed up my own
truth, what I wanted, what I felt good about. So there was that, even
though it felt very uncomfortable.
Fast-forward several months. So I got to know different people. I got very
active in the cross country team and made friends, and it seemed to be
forgotten about. The following year, several months later, I remember it
was on Valentine’s Day, the vice principal of my high school called me into
his office and said, “This morning there were students in this office
talking about you, and they mentioned this party that you left because of a
movie that was shown.” He said, “Is that true?” I said, “Yes, it is. That
is true.” And I remember he gave me this big sugar cookie, a heart shaped
sugar cookie, and that stood out to me. And I was just so surprised that
people even cared or remembered. And from there, that story got shared with
the leader of our congregation. He’s called the stake president, and I was
asked to speak in front of a couple thousand people about my experience and
about being an example. I learned a lot from that experience. I was able to
speak and to see myself in a different light at 17.
Another thing that happened is I decided to run for student body president,
and I won. This experience that I had, gave me the confidence to know that
people were paying attention. That they knew what I stood for, that they
knew where I landed. And so when I decided to run after only living there
for a year, I won and I was able to be the student body president my senior
year. I was also nominated to be the cross country team captain and won the
Student of the Year award and developed great relationships, not only with
my peers, but with my teachers as well.
That experience taught me so much about what happens when you stand your
ground and when you do things, not from an attempt to manipulate others’
opinion of you, to control anything, but just when you stand in what is
true for you. That you’re not apologizing for it. It doesn’t feel good
sometimes, like I said, but I learned so much from that, and it really
opened my eyes to leadership, to showing up, to seeing that people are
paying attention, that they watch.
Story number two. I have told this story before in episode number one about
how I’d been married for 16 years and ended up deciding to get divorced,
but this is another part of that story. I had no idea how things were going
to be okay. I was terrified. I was so scared. I didn’t know how the
finances would work out. I had always been a stay-at-home mom. He was the
one with all the education who was bringing home the income. We had six
children. I had no clue how we were going to be okay. Not only that, I
didn’t know how my kids were going to be okay. I didn’t know how he was
going to be okay. I didn’t know how I was going to be okay.
I wanted to just put a big fat Band-Aid on all of it and make it better for
everyone. I remember praying and going, I can’t imagine a harder thing for
you to ask me to do, but I knew it. I knew that it’s what needed to happen.
I knew it, and so I moved forward with it going, okay, I don’t know how
this is going to end, but this is what I’m doing. I had no clue that in
less than a year he would be gone. I had no idea. I didn’t know that my
kids would thrive as well as they are. I didn’t know that there was a man
in Montana who was going through his own crisis of burying his wife and
that we would find each other, and that we would raise our family together
with so much happiness and love. I had no idea.
If I would’ve stayed in that fear and doubt and worry of not knowing how it
would be okay, it kind of scares me to think what that outcome would’ve
been. I think that everyone in the story, including my first husband, had
the best possible outcome for them. I think that I needed to move forward
with that so that we all could find out more what we’re made of, that we
could open the door to other opportunities that needed to happen. And
doesn’t mean that it wasn’t terribly, terribly hard. It doesn’t mean that
it wasn’t very, very uncomfortable and that I didn’t go back all the time
and go, am I sure? Am I still sure? But deep down, I knew. I knew that I
needed to move forward, and so I did.
Story number three. When I was dating my husband now, he had just buried
his wife, when we first started chatting, it had not been very long.
Shortly into our courtship, my first husband died. We were divorced at that
point, but he died, and that threw me into a whole new emotional grief and
sadness that was a different kind of grief than what I experienced before.
To say that our courtship was a little bit rocky would be an
understatement. We would move forward and then pull back, move forward,
pull back, and of course, it was all his fault. He was just not committing,
at least that’s what my brain told me. But really, I had my own issues too.
I was a little jumpy. Maybe a lot jumpy. I was looking for reassurance that
everything would be fine, and if I didn’t get that, then my brain would try
to sell me on a story that things were going to not go well, that I wasn’t
being courted the way that I wanted to be, et cetera, et cetera. Well, it
got to a point, quite a ways into the relationship, we’d been dating for a
couple of years where it became very clear to me that I needed to be
willing to walk away from all of it. It got a little bit stagnant where I
felt like we were not moving. We lived in different states. Our kids were
kept in limbo going, “Are we doing this or not? What’s going on?” Our kids
had met many times.
And I was in a place where I felt like for my own progress, I needed to be
willing to walk away from all of it, and so I ended it, and it was a really
hard decision. I remember crying a lot. I remember the conversation with
him. Both of us were so sad because I knew that I loved him. I knew I cared
deeply about him, but I knew that I needed to be willing to walk away from
it for the greater good of both of us, and so I did. I walked away. I
started dating someone else after a little while, and I remember this day
where I had this experience when I went to our place of worship. It’s
called a temple. I went there and I walked out of the temple, and I
remember this feeling like I could fly.
I remember this feeling that no matter what happened, if I stayed single
forever, if I married this one guy, or if my Alex were to show back up, I
wasn’t attached. It didn’t matter if he came or not. It mattered, but I
wasn’t attached to it. I knew that no matter what scenario played out, I
would be fine. I would be more than fine. I would be happy and thriving,
and that I was okay. It was such a wonderful feeling. I remember feeling
like I could fly. And I kid you not, the very next day, Alex showed up on
my door. The next day. You cannot tell me that’s a coincidence. I think
that sometimes, not just sometimes, the magic in letting things unfold is
being willing to put them down, saying, “I don’t need this. I don’t have to
have this. I can be fine on my own. I can be fine without these external
people or things or validation or whatever it is. I can do this myself.”
And I remember getting to that point and feeling that freedom, and then
it’s like magic, he showed up. And yeah, it threw me, he would tell you. I
was pretty confused for a minute because I was like, “Wait a minute. Wait a
minute.” I was dating this other guy, and there he was. And just the day
before I was like, “Hey, I’m really good here. I’m really good.” But in the
end, he’s the one that I chose and that I wanted to be with, and so I
married him and I moved my children to Montana to be with him. And I’m
grateful every day that I did that, and I’m also grateful that I was
willing to walk away, because it showed me that I would be fine either way.
I chose him. I chose my new children, but I did not have to. It wasn’t from
a needy graspy place.
So what does this have to do with you? Can you relate to any of these
things? Do you have things in your life that you’re holding onto because
you so want to know the outcome? You so want to know that your children are
going to be okay. You so want to know that you will be okay. How is this
going to be okay? And so maybe you cling to the side of that shore instead
of jumping in and letting it carry you to where you ultimately need to go.
What happens is we make more work for ourselves, clinging. We make more
pain for ourselves. We make more suffering by clinging to that shore and
trying to control it. What would happen if you let go? What would happen?
I have a couple questions here that I’d like you to think about and maybe
look at the scenarios in your own life that you find yourself in and see
which one fits you best, okay? What if you letting go of that shore and
just heading into the uncomfortable waters of not knowing, might be leaning
more into love with your spouse, even though you know that he might slip
back up again? What if you leaned more into that and trusted that no matter
what, you could land on your feet? If that felt like the thing that would
be most in alignment with who you are, that took the most courage, what
would happen if you did that? If you could let go of needing to know that
you wouldn’t get hurt again or needing to know how it would end? What if
letting go of that shore meant letting the marriage go? Letting it go,
trusting that everyone in the picture would be fine, even him, even your
kids, especially you. What if you being willing to let go and trust that
your outcome will be more than okay would change everything for you?
One really important point I want to make is that sometimes we don’t do the
thing that feels most in alignment with telling the truth, because we want
to protect the people around us, and we feel like it might hurt them if we
really did the thing that feels most in alignment with us and most in
integrity. And we worry about them, right, we don’t want to hurt people. So
sometimes we water down what we want. We go with the flow. We keep silent.
We don’t have the conversation. We don’t ask for what we want. We don’t put
our foot down. We just kind of go along with things and go, oh, I’ll just
see how it goes. I can tell you from my own experience with those three
examples that I gave, that my life would be 100% different if I did not
make those choices.
Even that first choice, that might seem like not a big deal. Do you want to
know why it was a big deal to me? Because it set the stage in my brain for
leadership, for standing up for what I believed and what felt right to me
even if no one in the room understood. It taught me that I could have my
own back. That even if it felt uncomfortable, even if I felt like no one
would get it, I knew for me that I was doing what I wanted to do for
reasons that I liked. So oftentimes we think that by doing the things that
we really want, that we’re going to harm the people around us. And I want
you to try on a different thought. What if you being your most true self,
your most courageous self, is the thing that will help the people around
you grow the most? What if it’s the pressure that needs to be applied to
create growth, to create change, to create shifting? What if that pressure
of you showing up is the thing that will change everything for the people
around you? Are you willing?
Most of all, what if it changes everything for you? Are you willing? So I
challenge you to ask yourself, what am I holding onto? What am I gripping
onto so tight that it hurts to hold on? What is creating suffering for me
because I’m so scared of what the outcome might be or might not be? What is
that and what would happen if I were willing to let go and trust? I would
love to hear from you. I would love to hear what those things are that
you’re holding onto. You can email me at email@example.com and tell me
what those things are. What are you clinging to? What would change for you
if you let go and trusted the process and leaned into your own wisdom and
your own strength and your own courage?
You know what would change for you? Everything would change. I can say that
from personal experience. Go ahead and reach out to me. Let me know what
that thing is, or multiple things maybe. I’d love to hear from you. That’s
all I’ve got for today. I hope you have a wonderful week and take care.
Thank you. Bye.
Thank you for listening to the Heal From Infidelity Podcast. If you would
like to be kept in the know about upcoming free classes, new podcast
episodes, and other ways of working with me, go subscribe to my weekly
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it’s andreagiles.com/lies-about-infidelity/. I will see you next time.