Writings, experiences and connected events for the evolution of mind, body and soul.
Go with the Flow
by Jennifer Green
Have you ever tried to control a situation where you don’t have any control? Did it feel good? Did you succeed?
I’ve learned that harder I try to control a situation like that, the more exhausted I feel. I lose in more ways than one. So many people say “go with the flow”, but what does that really mean?
I’m writing this on the shoreline of my favorite beach. I’m watching the whitecap waves ascending and descending, just like my emotions on my tough days—or tough moments, that still appear out of nowhere. My hot tears hit the hot sand and I realize they are made of water that also flows, sometimes uncontrollably. I’m grateful I’m wearing sunglasses.
In a river
Water has become a very significant symbol in my life, representing emotion, flow, life, surrendering and letting go. It’s about being in the moment, following the pull, not the push.
Imagine you are standing in a river and walking against the current. Water is pushing you around and you force against the water in return. You realize you are resisting and walking in the wrong direction, which is difficult. Everything feels heavy.
Now imagine turning around, where one small shift changes everything. The river current is pulling you in the right direction, you are no longer fighting it and you are even letting go while being in the moment. It carries you and you are going with the flow. The current catches you and you feel so much lighter and relaxed.
Does this mean you are a prisoner to the water and have no choice as to where you are going? Not at all. You can turn left, right, go straight or even take a break if you want to. Just keep going in the right direction and let go a little bit so the current can carry you; and have some fun with it. Look down. See how clear that water is? What else do you see and notice? How does it feel to be so free?
Waves at play
Recently, I realized I need to go with the flow more in certain areas of my life: lower my expectations, don’t try to control the outcome, live in the moment and enjoy it.
One of my close friends, Judith, a life coach (and a great one I might add) asked me if there was ever a time when I did something big in my life, was vulnerable, felt like I was going with the flow, didn’t attach an outcome to it and did it anyway. Guess what I answered? “Yes, when I wrote my book. I had no idea how it would turn out, I just did it, enjoyed the process and hoped people would like it.”
It’s the same in other areas of life where it’s important to trust in the process, go with the flow, and believe things will work out the way they are supposed to. Stop fighting it and embrace it instead.
I admit I get my hopes up very high, very fast. Bringing myself down to a low starting level is very hard. But what’s even harder is living with constant disappointment that things didn’t go the way I expected them to, especially in relationships.
That’s where the waves come into play. The highs and lows are so unpredictable and can carry you away into good and not so good times; just like love, emotions and life.
Rather than crashing into the waves, ride them instead. It’s okay. It’s unrealistic to think you need to be happy all the time, so when sadness or anger come along, think of it as a wave and ride it out. It will pass and flatten out on the shoreline.
As I sit here and look out at the turquoise water and watch these waves, I somehow feel at peace because of their sound washing against the shore and how great they look rolling in while the birds sing overhead. I see my kids playing in the waves, having a great time, going with the flow.
We are all connected to nature, and many of life’s answers are out there if we pay attention to them.
I am happy to say I’ve been making some progress in going with the flow and I still have work to do, but it feels much better, very freeing and less stressful… Dare I say fun? Sometimes, yes. I’m still learning.
Jennifer is a registered nurse, life coach, freelance writer and author. Her first book, Winning While Losing: The Upside of Heartbreak, is available on several online bookstores, including Friesenpress. You can contact her at email@example.com or via her blog, CourageCoach.