We often hear people talk about “going with the flow” when discussing how they intend to deal with important issues and challenges in their lives. I think for most, that means they wish to engage matters as they naturally arise, without forcing or resisting.
However, what we hear very little about is how we can actually do it.
I would like to share some ways that have allowed me to access the flow state, which, for me, is that state of grace where things seem to come to us—almost effortlessly–rather than we to them; where openness and freedom of thought and ideas spring forth almost magically; and where we are aware and grounded.
Following a very difficult period of my life twenty-five years ago (and well before I thought about writing my current book) I began exploring and writing about the idea of being able to glide within “life’s natural currents.”
The metaphor that came closest to the vision of a peaceful life I desired was riding ocean waves.
I thought of there being a great variety of waves, some building up quickly and crashing mightily, others cresting more gradually and lasting longer. Some simply vanishing . Many changing course. We have no influence on their patterns, paths, and frequencies; we can only be patient and alert as we await them. As soon as one crests near us, we can extend our arms, swim a few strokes, and glide with it. If we encounter turbulence, which we always will, we can find ways to protect ourselves.
I even coined my own nautical parlance, such as “go with the Wave”, “ride the Wave”, “navigate the currents” and “float with the swells”. Just verbalizing it in this manner was (and is) very soothing to me.
Indeed, the Wave has played such an important part in improving my life that I included it as the final chapter of Losing Control, Finding Serenity.
I learned that the best way to access the Wave is by letting go of control. I thus explored effective, practical ways—which I now call “decontrol tools”—that enabled me to more easily let go of control in such vital areas as parenting, family and friends, love and romance, my creative endeavors and at work. I even found effective ways to do it with my favorite past time, tennis. I write about these decontrol tools in depth in my book, as well as in this blog.
Simply put, when you lose control, you find flow.
When you let go of control, it frees life’s “natural currents” and you can then participate in those those currents in an expansive and intuitive manner and discover life’s possibilities. I quickly learned that the rewards are often unexpected and remarkable. Turmoil and conflict disappear. Intimacy and bonds with friends, family and loved ones strengthen significantly. Fears and worries leave us. And work becomes less stressful and more profitable.
I encourage you this week to start letting go of control and enjoy life’s flow!