Earthly attachment is a tricky thing. We love people and we love our memories. Our memories are kept alive through objects. Sometimes we get caught up in the objects we buy. As in the objects become precious and the desire to keep these safe can build some anxiety.

We don’t want to let go of what is so dear to us – neither people nor the objects we own, houses included. The thought of a friend or family member dying most likely brings tears to your eyes. And imagining an important object or beloved person being taken away can be heartbreaking. We can also be attached to ideas and self conceptions.

It is helpful to be mindful of these attachments. When the next someone new or something shiny comes into your life, see it an opportunity to practice loving detached acceptance.

The only way to be truly free is to remain detached from the objects and even people in our life. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t LOVE extremely and intensely. We just remember these things outside ourselves are not US.

In terms of relationships, this means that you don’t try to control the other person in an attempt to “keep them safe.” You just accept them as they are. If you aren’t meant to be together, your friendship will fade naturally and hopefully love is not lost. But if you are aligned, you will gain a deeper relationship if you love like this, meeting the other person completely as they are.

That doesn’t mean you’ll not be sad if said person leaves your life, but rather you will have trust that another friend or dear person will come to fill that space. You are living your life, and people and objects come and go.

Basically, this means don’t cry over accidentally smashing two of your best serving bowls, despite having carried them with you to various apartments, across the ocean twice, for 20 years. Even if you are afraid that without them you won’t remember the parties you used them for when you’re 80. (Um, TMI?)

It is ok to be sad, but don’t dwell on it. In the moment you are scooping up the broken shards, revel in your memories. Think back on those great friendship gatherings, remembering the hummus you served in the one bowl, or that Thanksgiving when you had mashed potatoes in the bigger one. And then recognize that bringing these memories back now will give you a better chance to remember them when you’re 80 and hopefully keep you more present in each moment.

Then as you are placing the debris in the bin, ask yourself: What does having this beautiful treasure gone now open up for me in my life?

Loving detached acceptance gives you the freedom to enjoy all the people and things in your life, but keeps you mindful that not everything is permanent in life and certainly not in your control.