It is an amazing gift to attract your soulmate and to create a love relationship or marriage together. The depth of your connection and passion can be beyond belief– certainly different than anything you’ve experienced before.
But what happens when your soulmate has an affair?!
In any relationship, deciding what to do after discovering the your partner cheated is difficult. You love this person and don’t want to lose him or her. You also don’t want to be lied to, betrayed and hurt again.
Whether you choose to stay in or leave the relationship, it can be a gut-wrenching decision. When you’re in a soulmate relationship, the decision becomes even more intense.
This is your soulmate, after all!
Fears that you’ll never experience this kind of amazing and deep love again may cause you to believe that you have no choice but to give him or her a second chance. You two are supposed to be together, right?!
This is what happened with Jennifer…
Jennifer doesn’t know if it was smart to give her boyfriend Sam a second chance after she found out he was having an affair with his ex-girlfriend. Her friends and family think she’s making a big mistake.
She shares their worries, but they don’t understand that Jennifer and Sam are soulmates. They knew it as soon as they met and have spent the last two years happily in love…until Sam re-connected with his ex and then slept with her one weekend when Jennifer was out of town.
As soon as Jennifer walked in the door, Sam confessed to his affair. He told her about the late night texts he and his ex exchanged for months and he told her about how they met for drinks and ended up having sex.
Sam asked Jennifer for forgiveness and promised to do anything to prove to her that he will never cheat again. Jennifer is still in shock that this happened at all. She hasn’t yet decided what to do.
Look at the facts.
For just a moment, set aside your beliefs about soulmates and the soulmate relationship you’re in right now. For just a moment, sort through the many thoughts and feelings that are filling your mind and look for the facts. Get to the reliable information that you know.
Write down what you know about what your partner did. You don’t have to be detailed or graphic. Next, write down the observable information you have about where things stand right now. What has your partner said or done since you discovered the affair? What have you said or done? What promises has your partner made (be specific here) and have these promises been kept?
Getting to the facts can bring clarity to an otherwise confusing and complicated situation.
Consider whether or not you’re seeing follow through on promises and genuine action to end the affair (if that hasn’t already happened) and make amends. Also be sure to consider what your heart tells you to do. When you listen to your heart and your intuition, make sure what you are “hearing” from within is not coming from “shoulds,” worries or fears but is rooted in a certainty about what’s best for you.
Make peace with your decision.
Whether or not you give your partner a second chance, do whatever you can to make peace with your decision. Know that if you end your relationship, this doesn’t mean you’ve lost your only chance at love.
There are different theories on soulmates. One says that we all have more than one soulmate. This means, when you are ready and open, you could later attract a different soulmate relationship which could be amazing in its own way.
If you do decide to give your soulmate a second chance, be smart and stay aware. Create conscious agreements with your partner to rebuild trust and address the habits that may have been taking you apart. Remember that being with your soulmate doesn’t mean you don’t have to actively work to keep your relationship healthy and connected.
Can you see your light inside you?
It shines both day and night
Leading you both near and far
Keeping your path in sight
Can you feel your light inside you?
As it courses through your veins
Inspired greatness housed within
To share for all to gain
Can you taste your light inside you?
Flavored sweet and pure
Water, land and truthful food
Grant energy and cures
Can you hear your light inside you?
As it speaks to you in song
Guiding you to flow each day
Helping you stay strong
Can you touch your light inside you?
Compassion, joy and heat
A tender kiss, a warm embrace
Rituals to be complete
Can you sense your light inside you?
It’s spoken from within
Hunches, feelings, heart felt signs
Giving life a whole new spin
Will you trust your light inside you?
Your gifts, your being, your core
True greatness lay in wait
To be shared, enjoyed, explored
Copyright G. Brian Benson 2011
“Higher Ground” (2011). Cast: Vera Farmiga, Joshua Leonard, Dagmara Dominczyk, Michael Chernus, Norbert Leo Butz, Barbara Tuttle, Donna Murphy, John Hawkes, Nina Arianda, Sean Mahon, Bill Irwin, Taissa Farmiga, Boyd Holbrook, Kaitlyn Rae King, McKenzie Turner, Taylor Schwencke. Director: Vera Farmiga. Screenplay: Carolyn S. Briggs and Tim Metcalfe. Book: This Dark World, by Carolyn S. Briggs. www.sonyclassics.com/higherground/
Often in life we’re asked to take things on faith, a practice for which we’re given no handbook at birth, leaving us to find our own way. That frequently makes for an intriguing journey, one that tests us on many fronts, especially when it comes to understanding and embracing that core issue of faith. But no matter what path we choose, it always helps to have inspiration to draw from, and one particularly thoughtful example of this is offered up in the new spiritual drama, “Higher Ground.”
Corinne Miller (Vera Farmiga) is a woman on a mission to find herself. Unfortunately, she spends much of her decades-long journey seemingly lost in a fog, often sincerely believing that she’s found the answers she seeks only to discover later—and repeatedly—that “truth” can be a rather elusive commodity.
Corinne’s odyssey is a largely spiritual quest. Having grown up in a household without much of a religious compass (her parents, Kathleen (Donna Murphy) and CW (John Hawkes), show little interest in the subject, especially after her mother suffers a heartbreaking miscarriage), Corinne is left to fend for herself spiritually. She grapples with church-related issues, first as a child (McKenzie Turner) and later as a teen (Taissa Farmiga), hoping that they’ll somehow magically fill the void in her life. She looks to the teachings of an affable local minister, Pastor Bud (Bill Irwin), for inspiration, but her enthusiasm is often lukewarm at best, as if she’s just going through the motions and not really grasping what she’s supposed to get out of the experience. Her efforts are further sidetracked by a healthy curiosity of worldly matters, such as interests in rock ’n roll, “questionable” literature and boys, particularly her beau and future husband, Ethan (Boyd Holbrook and Joshua Leonard, respectively).
Corinne’s journey takes a dramatic turn, however, when a potentially disastrous personal tragedy produces an unexpectedly miraculous outcome, prompting her and Ethan to commit themselves wholeheartedly to a life of devotion, a vow that culminates in their initiation into a fundamentalist Christian community. Through this sacred indoctrination, it appears Corinne has finally found true happiness and contentment in her life. Or has she?
Sometimes Corinne seems genuinely filled with the spirit of Jesus and the Divine Creator, but, at other times, she appears utterly perplexed, as if she’s missing out on something she believes she’s supposed to be experiencing. This is especially true when spending time with her friend Annika (Dagmara Dominczyk), who frequently lapses into tongues, a spontaneous personal prayer language that fills her with bliss. Needless to say, Corinne feels left out, longing for the same elation her friend so thoroughly enjoys.
But things don’t stop there. Over time, Corinne increasingly becomes filled with doubt about her faith. She recalls past tragedies, like her mother’s miscarriage, and then lives through new ones of her own, such as witnessing the anguish of a dear friend who suffers a debilitating brain tumor. She can’t help but wonder where God is when such dire circumstances arise, especially since He was there for her when she suffered her own misfortune. Reconciling this glaring contradiction causes her much confusion and heartache.Learning how to balance secular issues and spiritual considerations in her daily life becomes a growing challenge, too. While glimpses of this arise during her adolescence, they grow more pervasive with age. What’s more, her attempts at addressing these matters come under heightened scrutiny by other members of the community, sometimes involving things as trivial as her clothing choices. But the fellowship’s scrutiny doesn’t stop with Corinne’s worldly acts; it carries over into her spiritual practices as well. She becomes puzzled, for example, when she’s criticized for freely expressing her own religious fervor, an act viewed by the congregation as sermonizing, something reserved exclusively for the men of the community. She wonders why she’s not allowed to openly share her joy and epiphanies with others; after all, would a truly loving God really instruct followers to restrict such acts on the basis of something as limiting, arbitrary and ultimately inconsequential as gender?
While the film overtly deals with religious and spiritual considerations in a Christian context, many of its underlying themes are applicable to other sacred and metaphysical traditions as well. Chief among them is the issue of faith, that steadfast trust we each place in our relationship with God/Goddess/All That Is (or whatever other term best suits you). It’s a subject that raises a host of questions, such as how committed must we be to it? Can we implicitly trust the deity in whose hands we pledge our devotion? What are we to make of situations in which our prayers seemingly go unanswered or manifest in “distorted” ways? And what are we to do if disillusionment sets in?
These questions are not exclusive to Christianity. Practitioners of other belief systems often grapple with these issues in their own particular spiritual or philosophical milieus. It’s not unheard of, for example, for conscious creators to find their intents going awry, either materializing in unexpected forms or not at all, making them wonder what their divine collaborator is up to. These incidents are not unlike what Corinne experiences, and such episodes sometimes are enough to evoke questions about the strength of one’s faith, no matter what tradition that devotion is based upon.
In these instances, if we have concerns about the path we find ourselves on, it’s a sign that we must examine the beliefs we’re putting out, for they drive what we experience. To that end, are we being clear with the Universe about what we really want? Are we allowing secondary considerations, like doubt or fear, to undercut the manifestation process by sending mixed signals to our divine collaborator? Or, perhaps most importantly, are we inherently mistrustful of our collaborator, believing that it’s behaving capriciously or not in our best interests? The presence of thoughts like this will invariably affect the quality of the outcomes we experience and the satisfaction we get from them.
Those who truly understand this divine relationship, be it in a conscious creation, Christian or other context, ultimately know that we dwell in a “Safe Universe,” one that operates with our best interests at heart, even if we don’t always readily recognize that as such. This is where the issue of trust comes into play, something that frequently requires considerable effort to fully grasp and embrace. In fact, getting to this point is often a process, something that we grow into over time as our understanding deepens, making it ever easier to recognize, acknowledge and accept the character of this intimately collaborative relationship. Indeed, it’s often said in conscious creation circles that we are each “in a constant state of becoming,” a notion that aptly sums up the progressive nature of this revelatory journey. Corinne experiences this for herself firsthand in the film, personifying a process that many of us will likely go through during our lifetimes, no matter what tradition we’re engaged in.
Corinne’s saving grace in this is that she’s cognizant enough to know when to raise questions about her faith and not to follow it blindly, especially when being cajoled by others who insist that her thoughts and practices must follow prescribed forms. Anyone who genuinely understands the nature of faith realizes that the Universe provides us with the means to fulfill our intents in the ways it deems most expedient, even if we don’t always comprehend its methods or if its manifestations don’t match our preconceived notions. Yet those who zealously subscribe to established religious traditions often demand strict, unquestioning adherence to their dogmas, liturgies and even costuming, insisting that their way is the only “right” way, a conviction that, ironically enough, flies squarely in the face of how All That Is fundamentally operates.
For her part, Corinne isn’t afraid to raise questions about her community’s spiritual and secular requirements and even her own personal faith. She seeks the truth, with her ultimate goal being an understanding of her relationship with God, not those who claim to speak for Him. In fact, it’s through such questioning that her own understanding deepens, showing her that spirituality is something more than just what happens in church or a closed-off community; it’s about how one chooses to live one’s life in the world, the one that she and All That Is have co-created in both its secular and spiritual aspects, and not about adherence to the arbitrary preferences of a group that believes its answers to life are the only ones that anyone needs. In this sense, then, Corinne comes to discover that secular and spiritual questions are not mutually exclusive, as many would contend, but instead are intrinsically intertwined, a realization that comes from true faith and not from rigorous obedience to subjectively adopted theological trappings. Any notion of separation between the two is an illusion (and a manmade one at that).
It would have been easy for the characters in this film to be portrayed as caricatures, but, thankfully, that temptation was effectively resisted. Credit the writing and, especially, the skillful direction of first-time filmmaker Vera Farmiga for that. The movie depicts its characters as individuals, not stereotypes, allowing their layered, complicated natures to shine through. This balanced approach makes the story and its players engaging to watch, in both moments of drama and humor, drawing viewers into the characters’ spiritual sojourns and warmly welcoming them to come along for the ride (and what a ride it is).
Faith is something we’re all tested on at some point, and “Higher Ground” provides an effective guide to help prepare us for such occasions. Watch closely; you’ll be amazed at how much you can glean from it, information that will stand you in good stead when times get tough and help elevate you to unimagined heights of enlightenment, no matter what your spiritual or philosophical leanings.
Copyright © 2011, by Brent Marchant. All rights reserved.
If we believe in the concept of “six degrees of separation”, are all connected. Those coincidences, serendipities, and chance happenings that come when we really need them are part of the connectedness we share. I have been fortunate to meet such great people, get information I have needed just at the right time, been given something I really wanted when I didn’t “look” for it. These things happen to us and when we stay open to possibilities, great things can happen.
Neighbors are part of this picture. Neighbors are part of our “extended family.” I’ve heard so many stories from folks in who grew up in the towns they currently live and talk about the way it was in the “good ole’ days.” They could go into a neighbor’s house, borrow a cup of sugar and write a note that they borrowed it. They played together, ate together and told stories on their porches. They were always welcome in their neighbor’s homes and they all watched out for each other.
How we treat and interact with our neighbors makes a difference in our lives – positively and negatively. Our neighbors can be there to listen, help us in a pinch, take us to the airport, give us a ride when our car breaks down, and give us a meal when we are too tired to cook. Neighbors are like gold.
When I can call my neighbor and friends and feel enough trust to openly share how I feel, I feel I have been given a great gift. There are many wonderful connections and we can be part of this. A friend of mine wrote me this recently, “My father told me, after many, many years of therapy and counseling, the one who helped him the most, wasn’t the smartest or most educated. It was simply the person who listened to him with care. It helped him more than anything.” Neighbors can be that for us.
The words we use and actions we take really set the course for how we will relate to our neighbors and friends. Taking the time to listen to our neighbors stories, share the joy and sadness of their lives, and just being available is enriching. It’s these heart to heart connections that fill us up and bring us joy.
Hold Me Tight is the best book I have ever read on couples therapy because unlike a lot of other books, it makes sense and it works. Sue Johnson is an Ottawa-based professor and relationship therapist who noticed that traditional therapies often didn’t work. Instead of persevering with the old ways or blaming herself, she went back to the drawing board and came up with a new model.
When I was studying therapy I remember my teachers telling me that couples therapy was by far the most challenging kind of therapy—not for the faint of heart. Of course it’ll never be a cakewalk, but I think Sue Johnson has revolutionized the field by articulating clear and definite steps to healing broken relationships.
Johnson went back to the books and revisited Attachment Theory, pioneered by John Bowlby in the 1940’s. Most therapists assumed his theory was peculiar to parents and children since that’s what his studies were based on. Johnson’s stroke of genius was to realize that Bowlby’s theory underpins all relationships. Understanding relationships from a new angle gave Johnson a valuable and useful way of understanding how they function and how they break down.
Being on the clinical side gave Johnson the tools to articulate a theory and a way to test it. Also being a therapist she took her theory into the field and tested it on real couples having real attachment problems. Before long Johnson understood the hidden language behind disputes and began to teach couples how to have conversations with one another.
The result is this fine book that is part theory, part teaching tool and part self help book. Anyone can read it and get a very good idea of how to improve their relationship or teach couples how to talk to one another in a way that heals instead of inflames. Hold Me Tight is nicely organized around seven types of conversations that couples can have that will build trust and attachment between them. Couples can use this book as a guide to learn how to talk to one another and by mastering the steps. Beyond couples, parents and children and friends will find knowing how to have these conversations useful to maintaining the health of their relationships.
If you prefer to learn Hold Me Tight conversations experientially, Sue Johnson teaches her methodology to therapists and certifies them. There are now hundreds of therapists in North America who are trained to help couples learn how to talk and listen to each other. You can find a certified therapist or a training program near you at Hold Met Tight. I learned a lot from this book that I will put into practice with all my relationships. This is a book that everyone will benefit from reading.
Since I began my yoga journey it has become clearer and clearer to me that connection and flow are sources of joy. This realization has had a profound effect on my life changing things for the better in surprising and wonderful ways. If you feel disconnected or without direction perhaps the tools I’ve learned can help get you back on track.
I started my 200 hour yoga teacher training at a time when the future seemed very confused and unclear. Unfortunately, this was fairly typical of my life but it was still a time of stress and fear. The teaching that particularly stood out for me during that summer intensive was letting go of end results and allowing events to unfold in their own time. In other words, to forget about the future and concentrate on today. I learned to give my best in the present moment, allowing tomorrow and all of the other days to take care of themselves.
This was incredibly freeing. I no longer had to worry about the next eight or nine steps down the line. Life stopped being a game of chess where every eventuality and move had to be planned for and worried over.
What I didn’t realize at the time was that this approach would deliver incredible results. The opportunities and experiences that have become available to me as a result of this ‘one day at a time’ approach have been astonishing and filled with joy. I can see now that I am happiest and most easeful when I am connected to source and living with the flow of life rather than against it.
Find your purpose and flow by giving your whole being to each moment as it arrives and trusting that the Universe will take care of tomorrow. Try this simple practice to develop your ability to become present:
- Sit comfortably with an upright spine.
- Notice where your body is in contact with the earth, feel grounded and safe.
- Bring your attention to your breath, noticing it moving in and out of your body easily and without effort.
- Stay with the breath, gently drawing your attention back whenever you notice that you are thinking.
Just five or ten minutes of this practice can bring a sense of presence and connection to your day.
These words from Desiderata mean a great deal to me. I hope that they will inspire you to find your light and stay there.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Wishing you joy, love and an easeful life.
Join us on an evolutionary journey. This eight workshop series takes you on a journey through the chakras, the main energy centres of the human body and brings awareness, balance and harmony to each. We will combine a gentle physical yoga practice with meditation, aromatherapy, music, visualization, personal reflection and breathing techniques to encourage the free flow of energy in each chakra.
February 5th: Power Chakra – manipura, the solar plexus. Connect to your inner strength and determination. become clear on your needs and desires.
Jacquelyn is a 500 hour RYT and Reiki Level Two practitioner. Her focus is on assisting students in finding their own connection to yoga and to themselves. Jacquelyn teaches Gentle Yoga, Flow Yoga, Beginners Yoga, Seniors Yoga, Meditation and a variety of workshops.
In order to trust someone else, it is vital that you begin to trust yourself. You must trust that you are a strong enough person to handle whatever comes your way. You must trust that you are able to open your heart up and allow others in. In doing so you face your fear of getting hurt. And as Shakti Gawain reminds us, “When I’m trusting and being myself… everything in my life reflects this by falling into place easily, often miraculously.” – Rose-Anne Turunen
Saying Yes means that we trust that we are enough to have, be, do what we want. It means that we have faith that everything we need will be provided along the way. And it means that we know that The Creator’s got our backs. Saying yes is listening to the inspiration-it’s saying yes to God. Everything else is interference. All fears and doubts are simply static. Stay tuned into your God station, your inner you, and remain focused. Don’t tune into the static of fear and get lost in that frequency. Determine to remain tuned into the higher vibe, to the truth of what’s resonating within you, and let your song play out in harmony.
Saying yes means we’re ready to go to bat for our dreams, that we’re going to defend them and fight for them, even when life shakes us down. Yes is about being open when it feels all wrong, ‘cause sometimes that’s part of getting alright. Yes is allowing, action, and unwavering faith all rolled into one.
We may want to reach from the place we are now, not having to move or grow or really exert and effort at all. We may want to stay put, stay stagnant, and still grab over into the other dimension of where our dream exists, and have it be as simple as that. But you must see that if it were a match, it would already be.
Getting in alignment with, or saying yes to life, can mean different things. Sometimes it means taking action, and doing what you need to do to make it happen overriding any fears along the way. Sometimes it means releasing the doubts or inhibitions that get in the way of moving forward (not often a comfortable process, but essential). And sometimes it means just getting out of the way all together. Enacting faith- believing in what you don’t yet see materializing, and trusting that it will be so, even if a takes a little longer than you like, is harder than you’d perceived it would be, and even when it stretches you in ways you never would have believed were possible.
When we want to become more, have more, do more-or welcome into our lives more than what is, there will ultimately be shift, because in order to get from one place to the other there has to be movement. Part of saying yes is expecting this movement and then embracing it as it comes, knowing that it is part of the deal. It’s part of what is getting us there- to the other side of ourselves-to the place where dreams come true.
Decide not to live your life in ‘maybe’. Say YES and prepare for the expression of the shift by knowing it’s you saying yes, and keep on saying yes as it comes. Look at every ounce of it as growth and as you stretching into the new paradigm of you yes-ing life. And don’t forget to celebrate your acceptance along the way.
To your expansion!
Copyright © 2010 Rhonda Simpson~Conscious Co-Creating. Permission is granted to copy and redistribute this transmission on the condition that the content remains complete and in tact, full credit is given to the author(s), and that it is distributed freely.
I had a simple, but profound experience in the swimming pool last week – I floated on my back for the first time in my life. I do know how to swim and enjoy being in the water, but for some reason I never was able to figure out how to float on my back when I learned to swim as a kid and as an adult it hasn’t really been something that has come up as an issue in my life (although it has always been something that I wanted to learn, felt a bit embarrassed about not being able to do, and also didn’t quite understand).
Thanks to the help of my friend Steve last week, I was able to let go and allow the water to support me. It felt scary at first, but once I figured it out, it was an incredibly liberating and relaxing experience. As I was floating there in the pool I had many thoughts, feelings, and insights – the biggest of which had to do with my own obsession with controlling things, and my deep desire and fear about letting go.
How controlling are you? Would you consider yourself very controlling, moderately controlling, or not controlling at all? While each of us falls somewhere along the continuum of control and for some of us this is a bigger issue than others, for most of the people I know and work with, control is an issue that gets in our way – especially in the most important (and stressful) areas of life.
What causes us to be controlling?
There are many reasons, beliefs, and emotions that lead us to hold on tight and feel the need to control others, situations, circumstances, money, communications, food, workflow, details, our environment, and various other “important’ aspects of our lives. However, here are three things that are usually underneath our controlling tendency:
- Fear – We worry that things won’t turn out, we will get hurt, bad things will happen, etc.
- Unworthiness – We don’t feel as though we deserve support, help, or for things to go our way.
- Lack of Trust – We’re scared to let go, count on others, and to believe that things will be okay without us managing every aspect of the situation, relationship, conversation, etc.
What does being controlling cost us?
There is a huge cost associated with being controlling. This negative impact is not only on us and our well-being, but also on those we love, the people we work with, and everyone around us. Here are some of the biggest costs:
How can we expand our capacity to let go of control?
There are many things we can do to let go of control. With compassion for ourselves, it’s important to remember that this is a process and something (especially for some of us) that may not come all that easy. Many of us have been literally “trained” (directly or indirectly) to be controlling and in certain environments and situations (at work and at home), being controlling has been encouraged or seemed necessary for our own survival and the survival of those around us.
That being said, here are some things you can do and think about to expand your own capacity to let go of control in a positive and liberating way:
1) Be honest with yourself – Make an authentic assessment about your own controlling nature. It probably varies a bit for you (as it does for most of us), but at the same time we all have certain tendencies, especially in the most important and stressful areas of our lives. With empathy and honesty, take a look at where, how, and why you hold on tight to control in whatever way you do. And, be real with yourself about what this costs and how it impacts you and those around you.
2) Ask yourself, “Am I willing to let go of control?” – This is an important question to ponder and to answer honestly. In some cases and in certain situations, the answer to this question may be “no.” It’s important to honor that if that’s the case for you. And, at the same time, the more willing you are to ask and answer this question, the more likely you are to start letting go of control consciously (assuming it is something you’re truly interested in doing). You may not know how to do it or what it would look like, but authentic willingness is always the first step in positive change.
3) Consider who could support you – Getting support is one of the most important (and often most vulnerable) aspects of letting go of control. Even though we sometimes feel like we’re all alone, that no one “gets it,” and/or that we couldn’t possibly make ourselves vulnerable enough to ask for help (especially in certain areas of life), it’s difficult to let go of control without the support of other people. The irony of asking for help is that many of us don’t feel comfortable doing so and fear it makes us seem weak or needy, and on the flip side most of us love to be asked for help and really enjoy helping others. We can’t do it alone! And, the good news is that most of us have lots of people in our life that would jump at the chance to support us – if we were willing to ask for help more freely.
4) Surrender – This is the bottom line of letting go. Surrendering doesn’t mean giving up or not caring, it means trusting and allowing things to be taken care of by others, by the process, and by the Universal Intelligence governing life – some call this God, some call this Spirit, some don’t call it anything, but most of us have an experience of It at some level. Surrendering is about consciously choosing to trust and have faith. It is something that can liberate us in a profound way and is all about us choosing to let go.
When we look back on our lives in hindsight, we usually see that “things happen for a reason.” What if we lived in the present moment with this same hindsight awareness? As one of my mentors said to me years ago, “Mike, you’re living your life as though you’re trying to survive it. You have to remember, no one ever has.”
Letting go of control is about loosening our grip, allowing ourselves to be supported, and trusting that things will turn out as they are meant to. Is this easy? Not always, although it can be. However, as we practice this and expand our capacity to let go, we’ll be able to release and transform a good amount of unnecessary stress, worry, and anxiety from our lives, our work, and our relationships.
A few months ago I got some specific feedback that it would serve me, my work, and my growth to start practicing the art of allowing in a more conscious and deliberate way. While I was familiar with the concept of allowing, I realized I had very little awareness or experience of it in actual practice.
As I looked more deeply at it, I realized that I had a judgment about the whole concept of “allowing.” It had always seemed weak, passive, lazy, or based on “luck” to me. I’ve always prided myself on being a hard worker, a “go-getter,” and someone who “makes things happen.” However, as I have recently come to realize – much of this has to do with a deep-seeded fear that if I ever slow down, stop pushing so hard, or simply expect things to just show up with ease – the whole “house of cards” of my life and my work will simply come crashing down around me. Can you relate?
Allowing, however, is an essential aspect of life and growth – as well as of our success and fulfillment. The first aspect of allowing has to do with us accepting things as they are. As author and teacher Byron Katie says, “When you argue with reality, you lose – but only 100% of the time.”
When we’re able to allow people, things, and situations to be as they are – without judging them, trying to fix them, or wanting to change them – we begin to tap into the immense power of allowing. Ironically and somewhat paradoxically, when we truly allow things and people to be exactly as they are, we open up a space for real change and transformation to occur (if that is what we want).
The deeper aspect of allowing has to do with us trusting, being patient, and having faith that what we want to manifest, create, and experience can and will show up in our lives as it is meant to. In other words, it’s an ability to allow things to happen and materialize, without us having to manipulate, dominate, or control other people or situations to make it happen. For those of us, myself included, who have a tendency to be control-freaks at times – this can be incredibly challenging.
The paradox that exists with allowing runs deep within us. So many of us were taught and believe “if it is to be, it’s up to me.” And while there is truth and wisdom in this philosophy, as many of us know, feeling as though we have to work hard, run fast, keep up, and make everything happen in our lives is exhausting and insatiable. No matter how hard we work, what we try to fix, or all of the changes we intend to make – if we don’t learn, practice, and ultimately master the art of allowing – true success and fulfillment will always elude us. Action is important, but we have to also learn to balance it out with our ability to allow.
Allowing takes faith, patience, and trust – three things that are essential for our own peace of mind and well-being in life, but are often not things we focus on, learn about, or are encouraged to practice in our intense, fast-paced, results oriented culture. The art of allowing is truly an art and is something that often goes against the grain and runs contrary to societal norms and pressures. It has to do with us remembering, as the well-known saying goes, “We’re human beings, not human doings.”
Here are a few things to think about and practice as you enhance your capacity and ability to allow with more ease in your life.
1) Ask yourself how you relate to the concept of “allowing.” Take some inventory of your own relationship this idea. How do you feel about it? How comfortable are you allowing things and people to be as they are, as well as allowing things to manifest with ease in your life? For many of us, this is something that we may understand, but may not practice. Tell the truth to yourself about how you relate to allowing and notice how this impacts your life – one way or another.
2) Pay attention to what you focus on in regards to your biggest goals and aspirations. In regards to the biggest goals, dreams, and aspirations in your life right now – how much of your attention and energy is focused on doing and how much is focused on allowing? While both doing and allowing are important, most of us put a disproportionate amount of attention on action. Increasing our focus on allowing and ultimately receiving, can be a magical, relaxing, and incredibly effective way for us to relate to our goals and dreams. This is often one of the big missing pieces in our desire for not only success, but more important, fulfillment.
3) Create an allowing practice. This is a simple practice you can do daily (like prayer, meditation, quiet reflection, affirmation, etc.) where you put your attention and awareness on allowing – accepting things as they are, trusting that things are working out as they are meant to, believing that the feelings, experiences, accomplishments, and outcomes you desire are on their way, and allowing yourself to receive these gifts and blessings with ease and gratitude. You may need to reach out to others for support, guidance, and feedback about creating or deepening an allowing practice that will work for you – but doing this is one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself (as well as to those around you).
Have fun with this and have compassion with yourself as well. For most of us, allowing is a lot easier to think about or talk about than it actually is to practice and embody in our lives. The more attention we put on it, however, the easier it gets. And, as we deepen our ability and our capacity to allow – our whole life can transform with ease, grace, and gratitude!
Mike Robbins is a sought-after motivational keynote speaker, coach, and the bestselling author of Focus on the Good Stuff (Wiley) and Be Yourself, Everyone Else is Already Taken (Wiley). More info – www.Mike-Robbins.com