Detachment

Detachment means we are increasingly able to view our lives and the rest of the world from an objective prospective. This does not mean we are cold and uncaring. Rather, we are self-contained. We have well-defined boundaries and we are able to think and act objectively, clearly and responsibly.


When we have learned detachment, we do not get hooked into the thoughts and feelings of others. We are not easily upset or manipulated. We may feel compassion for others but this does not cloud our ability to choose how we think, feel and behave. We also do not need others to behave in any particular way. -Stephen Covey


Detachment is the: Ability to allow people the freedom to be themselves.

  • Holding back from the need to rescue, save, or fix another person from being sick, dysfunctional, or irrational.

  • Giving another person "the space'' to be him or herself.

  • Disengaging from an over-enmeshed or dependent relationship with people.

  • Willingness to accept that you cannot change or control a person or situation.

  • Developing and maintaining of a safe, emotional distance from someone whom you have previously given a lot of power to affect your emotional outlook on life.

  • Establishing of emotional boundaries between you and those people you have become overly enmeshed or dependent with in order that all of you might be able to develop your own sense of autonomy and independence.

  • Process by which you are free to feel your own feelings when you see another person falter and fail and not be led by guilt to feel responsible for their failure or faltering.

  • Ability to maintain an emotional bond of love, concern, and caring without the negative results of rescuing, enabling, fixing, or controlling.

  • Placing of all things in life into a healthy, rational perspective and recognizing that there is a need to back away from the uncontrollable and unchangeable realities of life.

  • Ability to let people you love and care for accept personal responsibility for their own actions and to practice tough love and not give in when they come to you to bail them out when their actions lead to failure or trouble for them.

  • Ability to allow people to be who they "really are'' rather than who you "want them to be.''

  • Detachment is the ability to view our life experiences from an objective prospective. Not judging the situation or experience because there may be a bigger picture happening. Detachment is allowing people the freedom to be themselves, while holding back from the need to rescue, save, or fix another person.. This does not mean we are cold or uncaring, rather, we are self-contained and disengaging from an over-enmeshed or dependent relationship with people. We have well-defined boundaries and we are able to think and act objectively, clearly and responsibly. Easy to say, yet much more difficult to do at times.

The question is what do I do when I don’t want to be around some one’s drama, because it makes me feel uncomfortable. There are two ways to look at this. One is, what can I learn about myself from this situation and what actions do I take to relieve my discomfort. I observe my ego which may be influenced by anger, fear disappointment or worry. I am uncomfortable because this individual’s actions will create future problems and I want them to see what I see. I also don’t want them to create more pain for themselves or others. This attitude leads me to attachment. A wise friend of mine once said” If you have no appointments, you will have no disappointments”. This is a wonderful way to be, but we are human and are not always objective when a friend or family member is suffering or we are in pain. So what do I do? I will maintain an emotional bond of concern and caring while I do what I need to do to maintain my objectivity and peace of mind.


When we have learned detachment, we do not get hooked into the thoughts and feelings of others. We are not easily upset or manipulated. We may feel compassion for others but this does not cloud our ability to choose how we think, feel and behave. We also do not need others to behave in any particular way.” Stephen Covey


The Secret Daily Teachings


There is a difference between feeling gratitude and appreciation for something, and feeling attachment to something. Appreciation and gratitude are states of pure love, while attachment contains fear - fear of losing or not having what you are attached to. When it comes to something you want in your life, appreciation and gratitude attracts, and attachment pushes away. If you are feeling afraid that you will not get what you want, or losing what you have, then you have attachment.


To remove the attachment, keep shifting yourself into a state of appreciation and gratitude, until you can feel that the fear has gone.


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Jeff Gero, Ph.D

818-640-2047

jeffgero@sbcglobal.net

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