Monday, May 9, 2011

Advanced Life Skills, “The Power of Surrender”

“The Power of Surrender”
by Jonathan

“There are few things more maddening than running into obstacles and blockades while you’re working toward an important goal.  You know how it works. You’ll be moving along nicely, feeling great about your progress, when all of a sudden – boom; you’re stuck.  You’ve just encountered an obstacle that you have no idea how to get around. What you do next might determine whether you go on to achieve your goal or give up out of frustration.  I don’t know about you, but my first impulse is usually to try and find a way to work through the obstacle, sidestep around it, or even force it to move out of my way. Is that your first instinct also?
 
What if that doesn’t work? Does that mean your goals are now toast? No, not necessarily. There’s another effective option that is often overlooked when it comes to dealing with obstacles. It’s called surrender. I know that the thought of surrendering to an obstacle can feel like you are giving up on your goal, but is that really the case? Keep in mind that surrender is not the same as defeat.

When you surrender to an obstacle as part of your success strategy, it just means that you are refusing to waste your energy fighting against it.  It means that instead of resisting and struggling, you are using time to get a different perspective on the situation so you can see the obstacle in a new light. Here’s how to do it:

1. Step back and gain some emotional distance. When most of us encounter obstacles, we tend to take them personally and draw conclusions about what they mean.  We throw our hands up and declare that our goals are finished, we’re finished, and we’ve failed.  Nothing could be further from the truth. Instead of drawing conclusions about whatever obstacle you’re facing, step back and observe it.  Then ask yourself a few questions like: Why has it appeared in your life?  What lessons can you learn from it?  Is it possibly an opportunity to stretch yourself more than you’ve been willing to in the past?

2. Stay open to your creative inspiration. Just asking questions like the ones in the last paragraph can get your creative juices flowing like crazy.  When you detach from any need to push through an obstacle, you may realize that there are many other options available to you.  During this time, be sure to write down any insights that pop into your head. They will probably prove useful very soon.

3. Give it time. Even if you see some great possibilities for working around the obstacle, don’t take action immediately.  Give it a few days.  Keep your distance, and you’ll probably notice that your fear and frustration will begin to dissipate.  Before long you’ll feel stronger and more capable about moving forward again. That’s the time to take action on some of those new ideas you came up with.
Leave room for change to occur naturally

When you enter into this process of surrender, don’t be surprised if the obstacle dissolves spontaneously on its own.  It happens frequently, simply because you’ve stopped trying to force things to happen and instead, you are willing to just go with the flow – which creates space for movement and progress to occur naturally.”

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