“The President’s in town.” Seems a simple enough statement. But, when you live in Los Angeles, it sparks a murmur — more often a roar — about something that can bring on blood-boiling discussions in the lives of Los Angelinos.
Roads are closed. Detours abound. And, at times tempers needlessly flare. Traffic flow stops flowing.
Or does it? If you stop to think about for a sec, doesn’t the flow just… change direction? And, if that is true, will those who actually “go with the flow”, planning for and accepting what is, be able to deal with the new traffic flow with reasonable ease and diminished aggravation?
It reminded me of a Colorado whitewater rafting trip I took a few years ago. During the mini-prep session prior to the romp down the rapids, our guide helped us don our life jackets, coaching us as much as possible on what might confront us: “lean into the raft” and “don’t fight the wave by leaning away from it.”
So, what happened when our raft banked a huge boulder in the midst of an angry rapid? I did just as I was instructed not to; I leaned away from it instead of rolling with the movement of the boat. I fell out, crashing to the bottom of the river, smashing against the rocks.
In that split second, I remembered his last instruction, “If you fall out, relax your body and don’t fight the water. Relax and go with the flow.” Oddly, in the throes of the adrenaline-racing action, my body did calm and I was easily lifted back to safety.
In many ways, life is like that river. Rivers are powerful and rich forces of nature that surge with purpose toward their ultimate destination, usually a larger body of water. The course of the river is called its path, and along the path are a myriad of changes that shift its course: calm pools of water, swampy marshes, shallow, rocky streams; rough rapids and waterfalls. These all cascade the river as it searches for that final destination.
The particles and inhabitants of the river understand its flow and current, travelling with the ebb and tide as obstacles and disruptions enter the river path.
I’m not talking about conformity or status quo here, but rather the sense of peace and release that comes from surrendering to the organic flow of your life and the unknown circumstances you encounter each day. When I’ve felt most centered in my life and most sure in my choices was when things flowed easily from one event to the next, like liquid. It’s also when I’ve felt the most “on purpose.”
Here are a few thoughts to get you started:
So, when life throws you a curve or forces a detour, remember the river. Relax and go with the flow.
Originally published at www.thoughtchangerblog.com.
Originally published at medium.com