I was speaking today to a client about the subject of surrender. This is a conversation that I seem to have pretty often with people, so it’s clearly time for a blog post about it. There are so many people with misconceptions about what surrender means that I want to set the record straight.
Surrender vs. Giving Up
Most people think that surrendering and giving up are the same thing. This just isn’t true. Giving up has an element of hopelessness to it. It says, “do whatever you want, I can’t stop you anyway.” It’s done from a place of victim-mode, not from a place of empowerment and choice.
On the other hand, surrender is done from a place of faith. It is an acknowledgement to the universe that it knows more than you do and is better able to handle the situation. It is a letting go and trusting that you will be taken care of – that the flow will take you where you are supposed to be.
Forging The River Flow
Imagine that you are out white water rafting and you fall out of the boat. You are left with your life jacket and your wits to survive the rapids without the safety of the boat to protect you. You have three choices:
- CONTROL! Turn onto your belly, face upstream and struggle against the tide. If you do this, you’ll get a face full of water as the current pushes against you. You’ll also not be facing downstream so you won’t see when the water is about to slap you up against the rocks, so you’ll be surprised when it happens and you’ll probably get hurt. And, oh yes, you probably won’t get anywhere. This is what happens when you try to control everything.
- GO INTO VICTIM AND GIVE UP – You could go limp and think “why does this always happen to me!??!” allowing yourself to be carried downstream facing in whichever direction you land and doing nothing to keep yourself from hitting the rocks along the way. This is what happens when you let yourself engage in your victim mentality thinking.
- EMPOWERED SURRENDER – Put your feet downstream and your face up, holding onto your life jacket so you don’t accidentally slip out of it. In this way, you’ll see the rocks coming and can use your feet to fend them off. Your life jacket will keep your face above water and most of your body will be near the surface and unlikely to get hurt. If you do go over a rock, your butt – the fleshiest, most resilient part of you – will take the brunt of the hit. And, while you’re heading downstream, if it gets to be too much, you can always use your hands as rudders to steer you slowly to the edge of the river where you can get out of the current enough to get out of the water altogether.
This is exactly how it works in the energy world as well. So which are YOU trying to do: control, give up, or surrender? Would you like to change your choice?