Cleaning Your Relationship Closet

Welcome to Lights On Podcast! My name is Mitra Manesh. I help people to transform their journey from being a survivalist to becoming an Attentionist. Yes, an Attentionist. And this podcast is full of stories and steps of that journey. On behalf of my team, I thank you for your presence and invite you to be an Attentionist by practicing your choice authority, summoning your attention and listening mindfully.
Welcome to our first episode of 2023 and our first episode for our third season. I’m really glad that now I’m speaking with you directly. And, as you recall, back in December I said that I have decided to record my podcast episodes directly speaking to you instead of taking them from my lessons or teachings. And we took a few weeks break, and here I am back in my recording space speaking to you directly. I had some time and some opportunity to think about a lot of things because I took a break, and we were traveling. And it was just a great opportunity for me to look at life as an Attentionist because that’s basically the focus of my attention, and has been for the past few years. It’s a word that I have coined, and I’ve trademarked, and I’ve developed a lot of work around it. But an Attentionist is basically a person that remembers and knows that they have a choice. And while they remember that, they choose how to pay their attention in a wise and useful way, so they don’t spend it on things that are not of value.
It was the first week of January and I happened to be visiting some friends of ours in a beautiful place called Ciudad Cologne in Costa Rica. It was early in the morning, and I was sitting in a meditation space contemplating. It was just so gentle to sit amongst the trees and many friendly creepy crawlies around me. I was looking at my life and thinking about how I can live more as an Attentionist. I come from a tradition that any beginning, any start, especially the new year, is an opportunity for cleansing and refreshing your life both physically and energetically. In fact, when the Iranian New Year arrives, which is the first day of spring, and this is a tradition that goes back thousands and thousands of years, we believe that’s where spring cleaning idea comes from, we do a major cleaning: we bring all our closet out or our kitchen cabinet out and we clean them. And energetically, also we evaluate our relationships. We mend any broken relationships, we let go of any broken relationships. It’s just a beautiful time to really look at our lives and see what’s going on in there. On that tradition, I was actually using the time, this contemplation, and this break time that I had, to look at my life and see if I wanted to live more as an Attentionist. What can I do with, which part or areas of my life needed more attention, so I was quite open. And I usually don’t have an agenda when I do contemplation. I was just sitting there and seeing what comes to my awareness. Nothing came for a while, and I was happy with that, and all of a sudden and surprisingly to me the topic of relationship came up for me and came to my awareness. And I thought, “Oh, that’s interesting!” It has been a while since I have re-organized my relationship closet, if you like. And that was interesting, so I started contemplating on that. And I recall that I always look at my relationships and the organization of it as if it was a closet. You know how you do it with your closet, you bring all your clothes out and you start looking at them and asking yourself questions: do I want to wear this, is it useful, does it fit me? I do the same thing with relationships, and I say, “Hmm… do I wear this relationship well? Does it fit my soul?” It’s a question that is just so meaningful for me to ask. Does this relationship fit my soul? Or does it go with my energy? You know how you put a dress on or a jacket on or a suit on and then you ask yourself, “Does it suit me?”
It’s the same thing. Does this energy suit my energy? Does it fit my soul? So, I did that and in my mind’s eye, I was putting all the relationships that came to my awareness out and I was asking these questions. It was amazing how much reorganization was needed! I just want to say this because I’m suggesting that you do the same if this goes home for you. But please be very cautious that this is not a psychological evaluation or diagnosis of people. This is not to say that this person has this problem or that problem or this is what’s wrong with them. This is very different. When we do this work at the energetic level, it is the opposite. Imagine that you keep a piece of clothing that no longer fits you or serves you. And you thank them because one day they did. That’s probably why you bought them. And you say, “Thank you for serving me. I really enjoyed wearing you. And now it’s time to release you and let you go.”
And what I do is I divide all the relationships that come to my awareness into three categories:
1. You retain some of them
2. You release some of them or
3. You revise some of them
“Retain,” of course, those are the ones that you evaluate and say, “Yes, I want to keep this one. It still fits me. It fits my soul and goes with my energy. And I wear it well in my life.” A “release” is one that somehow no longer serves you and suits you. I’m sure it’s two ways, because if it’s not suiting you and serving you it probably is not doing anything for them either. So, you let that go, and you let that go with a sense of gratitude, paying attention to the honoring of this relationship. Because I’m sure one day it worked and one day it was helpful. And then there’s the “revising” of the roles, and we do these with clothing too, at least, I do that every now and then. I think, this T-shirt used to be wonderful, I used to wear it, and now maybe I just use it at night when I just want something comfortable, or you may really demote it and say, “No, I’m going to put it in the kitchen and use it as a rag.” So, you’re not releasing it, you’re not letting it go, but you are revising the role that this piece of clothing, and in this case this relationship, has in your life. Again, I want to invite you to bring a sense of respect and honor to any relationship that you are not retaining. Because energetically, it is very important that we do that. If we let it go or revise it with anger or with resentment, I can assure you that you’re not letting it go. You’re actually retaining it in a negative way, and that is not helpful for you or for the person that you’re letting go.
This is a very powerful practice that I’m inviting you to do. But I invite you to do it when you have perhaps gotten into a place of contemplation and connection to your heart so that it becomes a practice that is useful for you, and more importantly that it serves you and adds to your energy. I remember a few people came to my awareness as I was sitting there and I just very gently said, “I, Mitra, hereby release you and free myself from you and may you also be free and move forward and grow.” I felt that this entanglement and energetic entanglement or maybe even verbal entanglement is not useful for any of us or either of us or anybody else involved. Because usually when two people don’t have the right energy exchange, it affects the people around them: young people, older people, just people around them, because people always pick up on energies.
We think we’re hiding them, but we don’t. People can always tell there’s something not right. I picked up another relationship in my awareness and I said, “I hereby revise your role from my main gear to an occasional gear and I place you right back in my energetic closet and thank you for having served me one day.” And then the ones that I retain, I say, “Right now, I retain you as a support and aide for my energetic growth. May I also add to your energetic growth and journey.” It’s a very gentle process that you can do. And then you may forget some people and they may come to your awareness as you’re driving or taking a shower, and then you do the same process asking yourself, “Do I want to retain them? Do I want to release them? Or do I want to revise their role in my closet of relationship?” It’s a very comforting and cleansing practice that I’m hoping that you will enjoy as much as I enjoyed doing it myself.
I’m just going to add one more point, because as I say this, people say, “Oh, Mitra! But you don’t know this person is somehow related to me or somehow is involved in my life and I can’t do that.” And my answer to that is always that it’s true that physically we may not be able to release people that simply, but I can assure you as an Attentionist, we can actually do that energetically. Say this person is in my life and I can’t or somehow don’t want to let them go physically. Now the question is, “How important are they in my life?” Exactly like the closet that I was referring to. How important? And usually, 0 to 10 is a good way of measuring, with 10 being very very important and 0 not being important at all. Say I decided somebody that used to be, I don’t know, nine or eight in my life and now they are a two or one. You see, immediately when I do that, I realize that what they say, what they do, how they are, loses importance in my life. And again, this is not from a place of ego. It’s not like, “I think they’re not worthy of my attention.” It’s not that. It’s just that I realized that there is no value in this exchange. It’s no longer assisting me and I’m sure not assisting them. And that really allows you to take the importance of them away in your life. And that is always your choice, no matter who they are. They could be a person you live in the house with. They could be a family member. They could be a friend that has somehow gotten involved in your life and it’s hard to let go. But you can always still let their importance be at the level that you choose to be. And that’s the beauty of living as an Attentionist because you always have a choice, and you live with choice. I hope that this practice and this experience of mine was helpful for you. Until the next time! I hope that you live as an Attentionist and pay attention to your attention.
Hope this episode answered a question or two for you or provoked and inspired questions in you. I’m so grateful you showed up and listened up. Until the next time. Be well and stay curious.


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