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Losing a Sock. Finding Love.

Today I lost a sock. Couldn’t find that sucker anywhere. I saw it’s match, right there where they both should have been. But it’s yang…nowhere to be found. I looked under the bed. In my suitcase. On the chair. Inside my covers. In my suitcase (again). And back and forth. I checked inside pockets and shoes. And in places that there is no way it possibly could have been.

It was my only pair of workout socks and I needed to go to the gym. No other socks would do. They were all too tall. Or too patterned. My white short sock needed to be found.

And I was running out of time.

I panicked. Asked “WTF?!” I knew exactly where it should have been, but nope.

So I gave myself a pep-talk.

“Ok Sally…you’re smart. You’re creative. You can figure this out. I mean it’s not the end of the world to have the wrong socks at the gym (yeah…but they realllllly would look ridiculous. Ok yeah…but is that really a reason to not go to the gym? Yeah, good point, but they’d looked realllllly ridiculous.) OH! I know. I have a sister. I should ask her if she has any gym socks.”

So I asked my sister and she indeed…had some socks. But they weren’t the right kind. I wanted to turn them down at first, but I decided not to. Fuck it…these will work (I said). Not perfect, but they’ll get the job done. And who cares!!?! They’re just socks. Ok good. Moving on.

And so I put on her peds, my foot sliding around a bit, but I figured it would be ok. I’d do the bike instead of run. No big deal. And I get to go to the gym. YAY!!

So I walk, with my shoes all laced up, feet sliding around, bandana ready to go, workout pants on, to the bathroom to put on my contacts and there, sitting on the counter right in between the sink and my contact solution was my ONE MISSING SOCK!

How on earth it ended up there, I have no idea. But that wasn’t the point. The point was that as soon as I stopped looking, as soon as I was willing to be open to new possibilities (different sock), and soon as I was willing to do what I wanted to do with my day regardless of the covering on my feet, I found exactly what I was looking for. Not by checking every drawer and around every corner. Not by frantically over-turning my suitcase for the fifth time. Not by checking the pockets of hanging up jackets that my sock would have literally needed to fly through the air in order to get to. But by letting it go. Not stressing about it. Not even caring. Doing my thing anyway. Trusting that my feet would be just fine no matter what.

And this got me thinking about life. About how we all try so hard to find what we’re looking for. We show up at places that we think our potential partners might be at. We follow the specific rules we think are necessary to have a successful business. We try to force decisions about our lives on ourselves because “I have a goal and gosh darnit I’m going to get there no matter what!” We’re frantically looking for our socks in life. And not only do we not find them that way, but we make ourselves crazy.

So we need to stop looking. We won’t find the love of our lives because we’re strategically figuring out where they might hang out. We won’t find the answers to HOW to do what we want to do by Googling it. We are not going to figure out life by TRYING to figure out life.

Instead, we will figure out my life by living life.

We will find all that stuff by letting go of needing it.

We can put it out there. Intend to have what we want. Be clear in our intentions. And then throw it out into the Universe, saying “You handle it.” Bring it to my doorstep. And only then…in the letting go of it, might you find what you’re looking for.
Or at the very least, you’ll find your sock.

What is it that you’ve been “looking for” lately, but not finding? What are some of the methods you use to let go? If you like this post, make sure to leave a comment. Let me know what’s going on in your life that you could use some help with And share this on FB. Tweet about it.

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23 Responses to Losing a Sock. Finding Love.

  1. Wendy Greene says:

    Sally! I have been “looking for” a couple of things actually (since you asked!) – a good guy and the answer to a work situation I find myself in (not related..). Re: work situation -I have been thinking, planning, looking at things this way and that way and trying to find an answer, but you are so right.. LET GO, live life and all will fall into place. Answers come when they’re supposed to. Guess it may be my planning nature – i feel comfortable knowing everything in advance.. haha, even as i write this i realize how crazy that is. As for the good guy.. yeah, learned that a while back.. it will happen when it’s supposed to. Being comfortable with letting go.. that is the challenge and the goal.

    • Sallyhope says:

      Girl…I TOTALLY understand. I know exactly what you’re talking about and totally agree. I’m one of those “like to know how things are going to turn out” people too, although I’m getting less and less so as time goes by. And it’s so funny because the only thing certain in life is that we have NO IDEA how things are going to turn out. It’s this funny little game we play with ourselves. I want to take on your “letting go” challenge and goal! Should we make a pact??

  2. Wendy Greene says:

    Definitely.. LET’S!

  3. Bernardo says:

    Doing vs Surrendering,
    Finding the balance is soooo hard sometimes, right?
    The biggest truth I’ve found with regards to this is: Life will always bring who I am back to me (not what I think or what I do) The second biggest discovery I’ve encountered regarding this is, if I really think about it what I really really really want is not found where I think it’s found. In other words, I may think I want something but what I really want is finding joy and fulfillment and peace and all of those are choices I have regardless of what shows up in the moment. I have a very good feeling though, dear Sally that you will always find the most amazing gifts from life because your heart is so big and so pure. Sending you all my love today and always -Bern

    • Sallyhope says:

      So beautifully put. And so absolutely thoughtful, once again. Bern…my life brought me you, and that’s evidence that I will, indeed find the most amazing gifts. I feel that way about our friendship. Thank you for being in my life.

  4. Dailey says:

    Sally! AWESOME post! Ask Betty about loosing her shoes, its code for when we loose our minds. Stop searching and just look around you and appreciate the people and love that IS there. My man Ronnie says it best “Live simply, love generously, care deeply, speak kindly, leave the rest to God.” ― Ronald Reagan. God knows what you need and when is the right time to bring it into your life, like when he brought you into mine. You and Natalie rocked and CHANGED my world. I totally feel you on this search girl, that’s why you need a wing woman in Austin. ;) Love and prayers to ya!

    • Dailey,

      Ronald Reagan has one of my favourite quotes. “Some people spend a lifetime wondering if they have made a difference. The Marines don’t have that problem.”

    • Sallyhope says:

      Miss Dailey…only YOU could so effortlessly weave a Ronald Reagan quote in and have it be the most adorable thing in the world. I absolutely agree with you and his quote. And everything you said. Stop looking, start living. And yes…I DEF need a wing woman in Austin. Ready??

  5. Betty Jean says:

    Freaking AWESOME article, lady! really happy to read it today. I just love your site. It never gets old. I love you, lady

  6. Joel says:

    Beautifully said Sally, as always. This is really an insightful metaphor. I’ve searched for plenty of socks, and it’s funny just how frustrating the search for a missing sock can be. Of course, from the sock’s perspective I’m the one who is lost.

    For me it seems to begin with the incessant feeling that I need THIS sock! The franticness of my search tends to be directly proportional to the fixation I have on a particular image of the sock. Lately I’ve been searching around for the sock of self-identity; the question of who am I, what am I about, etc. I have an image of that too. I get to looking so frantically for the me-not-yet that I miss what’s immediately available: living as me-right-now. Strangely I feel most not myself when I’m on this desperate search for myself (crazy right!). Being open to other possibilities is exactly the right antidote. And it seems to involve a willingness to hold the sock images with an open hand and to shift focus toward something else that’s not THIS sock. In doing so the image itself loosens its grasp and socks tend to show up all over the place, even in the most unlikely of places.

    • Sallyhope says:

      Hey Joel…I love every single thing about this comment and agree with you wholeheartedly. It’s not just that we look for socks, but you’re right, that is has to be THIS sock. The more stuck we are on the specifics of the type of sock we need, the harder it is to find it. And in the process, it seems so impossible to let it go. The vision of what the sock needs to be like. But that’s the main trick. I’ve also had a search for self and it’s so funny because just by simply searching, we aren’t being. Just like what you said. Finding things isn’t about searching for them. It’s being open. Now……..if someone could just tell me how to do that, I’d appreciate it. :) What are some of your ways to let go and stop yourself from frantically searching for socks?

      • Joel says:

        Ah, yes…how? I kind of dodged that part. I don’t really have a method, but here’s a loose description for what seems broadly helpful, almost in a preemptive way. i) awareness or listening to my life :: you know how when you learn about something new you begin to notice it wherever you go? I’ve gotten much better at hearing the franticness in my own life before it ramps up. Having awareness already loosens the grip of whatever it is I’m so frantic about, and lets me appreciate people/things for what they are, and not for what I want/need them to be. ii) action or experimentation :: after awareness, I shift my attention to something else, preferably an activity that I can do with my whole being. I have a running list of experiments that are not direct answers to the questions that tend to cause the franticness, but rather provide a context for moving around/through/under perceived obstacles. For instance, around the question of self identity I have some experiments that shift my attention from the question of who I am, to doing something I enjoy or am challenged by, e.g., invite friends over for dinner, learn to make great French bread, play guitar, write a short story, mow the neighbor’s lawn, start my own flashmob, ride my motorcycle, start conversations with strangers, etc. This list gives me something concrete and present to direct my attention toward, and it’s a pretty simple list. iii) community :: I try to surround myself with people doing I & II to learn from them and be supported by them…synergy. iv) awareness again :: listening with compassion to what happened in this experimentation process.

  7. I had to read through this a few times to “get” it before I said anything, because it does kind of make sense.

    When I fully accepted that I DO work too much and don’t get out, when I accepted solitude, when I accepted being by myself was when I met my woman. (ok, so technically, I met her before, but bear with me)

    So the first time I actually was at a social-type thing with her at the same time, there was some mild flirting by her, which I quickly dismissed.

    The next time was when she took me to her place and came right out and told me she was interested. It took some time to reply to that, because I’m not exactly used to having women say they want me. She told me that kidnapping me was the only way to get through to me, since when she flirted earlier, she said she “practically threw myself at you”, and I didn’t respond.

    So, I’m not sure EXACTLY if it is the same thing as what you are saying, since I was told that I “gave up” on relationships before her, and that was why she had to go and figure out a new way of getting through. But I had left myself open because finding a relationship didn’t matter to me, so I guess I had decided to wear different socks myself before the matching sock was found.

  8. Ashley says:

    Hey Miss Sally,

    I could totally picture the missing sock thing. I have about ten lonely socks, missing their mates right now. Only, I have no shame. I’ve gone out with the one pink striped sock + the white ankle sock.

    But I got your message loud and clear. I’m practicing the art of allowing right now. Ah, yes, it feels goooooood.


  9. Kelly says:

    Hey Sally!!! Always love your writing! Good illustration!

    OK, so I get it…sort of…in theory…but how do you know the difference between “letting go” and procrastinating? Sometimes I wonder about this with my business…I’m coasting along…OK…but not lit on fire…well, physically…wondering if I’m just going at my own pace “allowing things to happen” or if I’m procrastinating. I am moving forward daily…and amazing opportunities keep coming my way…and then I think, “Hey, procrastination paid off haha” Or…”all in good time.” Does this make sense? Not sure if I’m being clear.

    As far as answering your questions of “What have you been looking for and not finding?” and “What methods do you use to let go?”

    Well, you know what is funny? I had always wondered as an adult when I would stop feeling like some big disaster was going to happen…like I wasn’t responsible in some way…which made me super responsible…and I just realized the other day that I finally let go of that impending doom mentality somehow. My guess is taking the leap from my cushy day job and facing uncertainty with my own business and things working out made the difference.

    I have a super dysfunctional family and I tend to feel isolated and alone. I just realized that a lot of my accomplishments in life have been because I had to be courageous and take on the world without support….if I had been coddled (like I had wanted to be) then I wouldn’t have moved to NYC, etc. etc. So, now years later I can see some benefits to the family situation that had made me so sad. Now I’m still trying to let go of wanting to be close to them…a natural thing…but accepting them as they are and for what they can give, which is very inconsistent. Yay! I’ve made progress.

    Whoops! I think I just wrote a novel…

    Thanks for all that you do!

    • Sallyhope says:

      Miss Kelly…gosh, thank you so much for sharing and I completely understand where you’re coming from with the whole “allowing things to happen” vs. “procrastination.” I’m guessing that you’re the type of person that is good at most things you try and don’t have to push all that hard to do really well. For you, “allowing things to happen” has probably worked. Yet there seems to be an inkling, somewhere that you could or should be pushing yourself harder. In which case, I say do it. Pushing ourselves is a skill that needs to be learned, and it seems like in A LOT of ways, you do that (moving to NY, having your biz etc). If you feel like you’re procrastinating though, you probably are.

      Also…I wanted to acknowledge your courage for everything you have done and created despite your family situation. WOOO WEEEEE girl. That must feel gooooooood.
      It’s so great to hear from you. I feel like it’s been a million years!


  10. Kelly says:

    Thanks, Sally!!! Wow! It feels so good to hear that! And your perspective is very interesting…I’m going to have to think about it. I can’t quite figure it out just yet…but I’m thinking that after having a “survival” mentality for so long…and I was pretty good at it [wink] that to make the mental shift from survival to thriving and making conscious choices out of wants may be where I get hung up. If it is just a “want” then I procrastinate. Hmmm….just today I was listening to a motivational lecture and they wanted you to write down…”I deserve to be successful ——” ( fill in the blank) And you know what? I couldn’t finish the statement. Like I feel it is OK to have random cool things come my way, but evidently to push hard for something just for the sake of me wanting it…something big…something more than just what I am comfortable with…hmmm…OK, you’ve obviously got the wheels turning and we’ve struck a chord!!!
    And after hearing your compliments I realized I never took any credit for all of the random cool things that have come my way.
    And this must be why I wanted to quit my security blanket part time job recently because I knew then it would put me more in a “survival” mode in order to finish some of my business projects!
    Wow…it’s all coming together now…all thanks to your Losing A Sock blog post! :) Thanks lady!!!

  11. Dailey says:

    Forrealsies, totally had a missing sock moment yesterday. You’ll read about it soon but I thought about this blog post when I found it, stopped thanked God for tender mercies and for you. Without this blog post I would have wandered around endlessly rather than just leaving it and accepting fate that God was gonna send my way. <3 you girl, thanks for blessing my life in the biggest small ways.

    • Sallyhope says:

      Oh girl…cannot wait to read about it. Love you too lady. We’re in each other’s lives for a reason. I believe that. :)

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