Are You Holding Too Much?


I was on a renewing retreat this weekend. I came in feeling tight and heavy. I told the retreat group that my intention was to loosen up and let go of tightness.

Through meditation, journaling, prayer and conversation I came to realize I had been taking on other people’s responsibilities energetically.

I wasn’t just trying to do good work with my clients. I was feeling their emotions, managing their visions and bringing on their energy.

With family and friends I was trying to control outcomes and emotions.

By the time I got to retreat, I was holding onto so much of other people’s energy, I felt burdened and heavy.

At one point in the weekend, on a quiet morning by the pond, I walked in the labyrinth. I took a snowflake obsidian stone with me thinking it would be a good reminder of my time there when I saw it at home. I had purchased it about two weeks before.

release other people's energy

I walked the path saying, “I release” “I surrender” “I trust” to keep my mind from wandering. When I entered the middle of the labyrinth I saw a pile of stones and pinecones others had left. “I should put my stone their as well,” I thought.

Immediately after I began thinking, “I don’t want to.” “But, I just bought this.” “I like this stone.” “I paid for this.”

But, I had a clear intuition that I needed to put the stone down on the pile. Reluctantly I did.

A whoosh of lightness and freedom came over me. Let go, let go, let go I kept hearing. The picture of me releasing the stone would be a far better picture for me to remember than keeping the stone.

I knew it felt safer trying to manage other people’s emotions and energy. I had taken on the responsibility that wasn’t mine. I did need to surrender, trust and release.

So throughout the weekend I let go of feeling responsible for others in that way. And realized I WAS responsible for my care and my radiance. I am in charge of my well-being, emotions and energy just as they are to theirs.

When I got home I could feel my radiance returning and will be mindful about taking other’s responsibilities. I added some more self-care time to my calendar.  I am doing evening yoga and releasing what isn’t mine at the end of each day.

How about you? Are you feeling burdened by other people’s energies or by trying to control? What are you holding onto that isn’t yours?


  • Karen Kellogg says:


    I love your labyrinth story; and your moment of recognition of “carrying too much”. I will carry your story forward with me; it lightens the load, not adding to it!

  • Matty says:

    I needed this…. I’ve been angry for too long about things that aren’t mine, but do impact me… letting go lets the perceived impact go as well..❤️

  • Beth says:

    Oh I hope you continue to let go, Matty. It’s not very fun to hold on like that.

    Thanks, Karen!

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