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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Is Closure Overrated?

Closure, the elusive need we humans have for finality or resolution.
It is healthy, healing, affirming, and makes us just feel better to “know”.
But can you recognize closure when it occurs?
Does it take two people?
Can it be found without the other person?
Usually when one is seeking closure it is because someone has not “given” it to them, but closure is not something that has to be handed over to you on a silver platter.
Usually when you get to the point of even needing closure there is a very valid reason for it! The need for closure comes from a traumatic or otherwise bad experience.
Closure is needed because we were hurt, rejected, let down, pissed off, or just plain in the wrong situation with the wrong person.
How can we expect the very person who hurt us so badly to give us this gift?
Now don’t get me wrong, not all break ups are horrible and not all situations are traumatic enough to warrant such extreme negative feelings, but more often or not in these cases closure is not nearly so hard to find. Sometimes we can in fact get closure by talking to the other person and sometimes the other person will talk to us about the situation in order to gain mutual closure. However I am not talking about those circumstances! What happens when you are completely shut out? When the phone is slammed in your ear. When texts, emails and calls are ignored. How does one go about getting their “closure” and is it really all that important?


Closure, the elusive need we humans have for finality or resolution.
It is healthy, healing, affirming, and makes us just feel better to “know”.
But can you recognize closure when it occurs?
Does it take two people?
Can it be found without the other person?
Usually when one is seeking closure it is because someone has not “given” it to them, but closure is not something that has to be handed over to you on a silver platter. 
Usually when you get to the point of even needing closure there is a very valid reason for it! The need for closure comes from a traumatic or otherwise bad experience. 
Closure is needed because we were hurt, rejected, let down, pissed off, or just plain in the wrong situation with the wrong person.
How can we expect the very person who hurt us so badly to give us this gift?
Now don’t get me wrong, not all break ups are horrible and not all situations are traumatic enough to warrant such extreme negative feelings, but more often or not in these cases closure is not nearly so hard to find. Sometimes we can in fact get closure by talking to the other person and sometimes the other person will talk to us about the situation in order to gain mutual closure. However I am not talking about those circumstances! What happens when you are completely shut out? When the phone is slammed in your ear. When texts, emails and calls are ignored. How does one go about getting their “closure” and is it really all that important? 

Of course it is! But how to GET it when the other person won’t work with you and sometimes won’t even acknowledge you let alone the fact that you need closure. 

The first thing you honestly have to recognize and answer for yourself is:
Would ANY type of closure really GIVE you closure?
Is Closure REALLY what you are after? 

So many times I see that it really is not true closure a person is looking for but continued validation of their feelings. That they ARE in fact still desired by the other person or there is still some inkling of hope. This is not what closure is about. You will not get closure by continuing an unhappy or unhealthy process. And the other person simply cannot give you the validation you seek because if they could you would not be seeking it in the first place! Be sure you are being fully honest with yourself that closure really is what you are looking for and you are not just crying out for attention, even if negative attention from the other person! 

Now if you have established in all honesty with yourself that you do indeed want true closure and you are in fact ready to move on and forward on your own path then there are things you can do to get it and it does not involve another person to hand it over to you! 

The good thing about closure is it re-empowers, it releases, and it lets GO of the past that harmed you. It does not continue it on, drag it out, or repeat the same mistakes. It is about letting go but to let go we have to get it out of our system. We have to be “heard” but the truth is sometimes what we really need is to SEE the situation clearly, LEARN from it, and hear own voice. Especially when we had shut out our own voice for so long. When we had made excuse after excuse for another person’s poor behavior. It gets to a point where we do not even hear our own voice that is desperately in there somewhere saying “wake up” “This is wrong” “this is bad for you”. 
And most of all you have to – absolutely MUST truly be ready to let go and move forward! You can’t fool yourself on this one! 

For closure to happen we have to work within ourselves! For true closure we do not need that other person. We need only to work through a process. 

There are several ways I have found effective to gain closure but there is one in particular I find helpful.

It is an exercise I call The Letter

The Letter is an exercise in which you write … yes …. A LETTER! 

This letter should be written knowing you need never ever mail it! 
This letter is for you and you alone. 
You are not to hold back.
Not to leave out any small detail.
You can be as angry, hurtful, mean, obstinate, loving, as you want.
Any and all emotions you have need to go into the letter.
You cannot worry about what the person you are writing it to may think or feel! 
You have to pour out your heart, every weakness every fear every anger every frustration, everything you have to say and never could, everything you want to say but don’t feel justified in doing so. Let it all go. 
The letter must be hand written – no typing and printing out! 
Some people will even go out and buy special stationery for this to make it even more of a process, a ritual if you will. Since it is your last statement to this person symbolically, you should put your all into it as we know from law of attraction what we put out is what we get back, so we want to put our all into this project in order to get a healthy return on our emotional investment. 
After you hand write your letter, put it in an envelope with your own name on it.
Seal it.
Sleep with it under your pillow for three days.
On the third day, take it out and read it.
Make it an event. Don’t rush. Read it over with a cup of tea or glass of wine. 
Make it a time for you to reflect upon what you have written.
Then ask yourself…. “If I were to send this letter would it be my final draft?”
Did you say exactly what you want to say? Did you leave anything out? Is there something you said you would want to take out? Would you change it?
Is it perfect?
Now is the time to re-write your letter. Yes again you must hand write it.
This time you may want to change a few things, add in something, take something out but either way re-write it, even if it stays exactly the same. 
This time take more diligence in your handwriting, the neatness, and the flow of the words. Pay more attention this time as this time you know more of what you want to say, you will be less emotionally tangled and able to focus more clearly now.
Let this draft be clear and concise and neatly written both in your handwriting and in your writing style, it can flow better now, come across more evenly.
Allow yourself to feel the ebb and flow of the writing process and put your full self into it.
Remember this is about letting go. Not finding resolution! That is key. Resolution is not closure! I feel all too often people confuse the two. Resolution usually brings about a solution or agreement. Clearly if you are seeking closure over someone then resolution was not possible between the two of you. So do not go into this hoping to find some way to make it all okay! It is NOT okay or you would not be feeling the way that you do! 
Remember this is about healing, letting go, and moving into a new forward and healthy direction. 
With that said, again I have to stress that if you are not fully ready to let go then you wont be able to and you cannot trick yourself or the universe on this! 
Now that you have written your letter again, put it in a new envelope and this time address it to the person it is intended for, and again do not worry you will not ever have to send this letter! 
Address it, stamp it as if you were going to send it then again, sleep on it for three nights.
After the third night open it – read it again. 
Is it perfect now? 
Is this really what you feel?
Is this really what you want to say?
If not, repeat process.
If so then now it is time to get your finality on this exercise.
Take the letter; one more time put it in an envelope.
Address, and seal.
Place the letter in its envelop under a white candle.
Use a tea light or votive.
Scented or unscented it does not matter.
Light the candle and let it burn all the way out.
While it is burning sit with it, looking at the flame.
Put your INTENT into the flame.
Speak what you want.
Ask for the closure and completion of this life path so that you can move forward in a happy healthy and whole direction.
Ask to be released of the burden that has been plaguing you.
Ask that your energy be freed of any remorse, angst, anger, fear, sadness, etc.
When the flame burns out you can take the letter. You may now do one of two things. You can send it – this would be only IF you wish or you can take it to the mailbox with a match standing in front of the mailbox and burn it. The ashes then are collected and laid into the earth. 

This is one of many exercises that can be done in order to bring CLOSURE without the other person involved. I hope this has helped in some way.
Love
Azzrian


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Azzrian

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