Why having closure is important

Image credits: fairuz othman / smile (Flickr)

Some weeks ago I wrote about the importance of not clinging to things, concepts, ideas or people. Recent experiences have given me a little bit more insight into the importance of not clinging.

In this case, I want to focus on the relevance of achieving closure in our lives. So, let’s start with the basics, what’s the actual definition of closure? According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary:

“Closure: An often comforting or satisfying sense of finality. Something (as a satisfying ending) that provides such a sense.”

And expanding on the definition, let’s look at what ‘finality’ means:

“Finality: The character or condition of being final, settled, irrevocable, or complete.”

The truth is, human beings are bad at dealing with concepts or situations that aren’t complete. It’s the reason why we have categories, names or symbols. The human mind needs boundaries to be able to deal with concepts.

The same notion applies to experiences. It’s painful, confusing and hard to deal with situations that aren’t enclosed, final or complete. This is one of the reasons why when something hasn’t ended, we’ll strive to find an ending to it. Some ending, any ending.

The paradox here is that sometimes we pursue those situations to the very end of the world. When we don’t like the current ending, we’ll keep pushing it until we settle the matter under our terms.

We want to be in control of all the situations and won’t let go of those experiences we don’t find satisfying. In other words, we cling to our version of closure.

It’s interesting to note that the actual definition of ‘closure’ includes the word ‘comforting.’ And hence comes the problem. Comforting or satisfying is something subjective, not objective.

So we’ll continue with our open matters until we find some closure. We’ll extend a relationship; we’ll keep having toxic friendships, we’ll stick to our habits. All this because we still haven’t found our ending.

The problem with this is that when we don’t reach closure, we’ll overwhelm our mind. We aren’t designed to deal with multiple open fronts. Despite what many think, we can’t multitask without losing an edge. A little multitasking will slow us down; heavy multitasking will kill our brain.

To move on, we need to close things. We need to find an ending to our current situations. Once again, the problem is when we don’t want to accept the current ending. We’ll struggle; we’ll suffer. Issues will go away, just to resurface in the worse moment to haunt us. Just when we think we’re done with something or someone, the wound will open again and bleed.

But closure isn’t easy. As I said before, it requires us to find a fitting ending, one that is comforting to us. And so we struggle and try to control what’s uncontrollable. We can’t make the universe do our bidding. When we say it like this, it seems pretty logic, but still, it’s what we try to do day in and day out.

What if instead of trying to make reality match our subjective definition of comforting, we could change that definition? What if we could learn to be comfortable with what we’ve been dealt? What if we stop clinging to our selfish definition of satisfying and we would just accept it and let it go?

Then we’ll achieve closure. Then we’ll be able to move on, to grow, to tackle new challenges and be happy.

Look at your life. What issues are unresolved in your life? What is dragging you? Suffocating you? Be brave and put an end to it. Let go of your fear, of your anger, of your emotions and find closure.

Don’t look back, don’t regret it. Each situation has its place, its time and moment. Let go of it and walk towards the future, not the past.

Chief Editor at The Aleph Report (@thealeph_report), CEO at Press42.com, Cofounder & associated editor @tech_eu, former editor @KernelMag.

Chief Editor at The Aleph Report (@thealeph_report), CEO at Press42.com, Cofounder & associated editor @tech_eu, former editor @KernelMag.