The Art of Surrender
I don't know what you do each time January comes around, but I've come to enjoy a practice of finding a 3 word mantra for the year ahead. This simply means finding three adjectives that I feel aligned with and want to become more of as I pass through the year. I find its quite helpful at certain points when I'm feeling slightly off kilter, or if I'm just wanting to check in with myself to refer back to them and see how thats being manifested in my physical reality or in my thoughts and dreams.
Being a positive mindset, keep looking forward kind of person, the words that inspire me are usually things like "creativity, joy, abundance or adventure " These sound upbeat and inspiring. Truth is, I'm usually seeking out an adventure here and there and as a musician, creativity is never really far away. So this year I felt it was time to dig a little deeper and choose a mantra that maybe might take me in a new directions with my spiritual development.
So after some meditation the word "allow" came to mind , followed by "surrender". Ok I thought, these are good spiritual aspirations. They definitely are used pretty regularly. I concluded that I'm being challenged to allow more surrender into my life- or to allow more allow!
So I decided I would go with that. It seems Zen and centred and I have visions of me playing my crystal bowls in a field of wild flowers happily for hours. Bliss!
But in actual fact, I'm usually not that great at surrendering if I'm really honest. It's easy when you're up the mountain, when you're all alone with just you and your higher self. But surrender is also what happens in the nitty gritty, the annoying person in the Sainsbury's queue, the flu you caught, the bill you can't pay, the sister who never appreciates you. It's much harder to maintain those wonderful allowing vibes when real life gets in the way.
I thought back to a beautiful song that I was recently introduced to called I Release Control by Alexa Sunshine Rose
I release control
And surrender to the flow
Of love that will heal me
How beautifully simple. Allowing love to find its way into all those nooks and crannies and do its thing, so that healing and balance can flood in.
I decided to spend some time reflecting on that and I kept coming back to the words "release control." I found myself going back to those thoughts about the balance of being still and present against the demands of life.
It really seems to me as if we live in a little dance between action and surrender - almost like a Yin and Yang , being active and receptive , or even the masculine and feminine sides of ourselves. It's the wonderful balancing of these that we need to discover. Go to one extreme would be total inactivity and collapse, but the other side is hyperactivity and control. Finding the flow is in the allowing of what is, which is found in both; the times to reach out and extend and the times to draw back inside ourselves and then in being present in both. Rather than wishing for the other or getting drawn into the unconscious patterns and habits that can easily engulf us. And maybe right there is where the healing happens too.
As I heard someone wise say, its not about fighting against the waves, or letting them crash all over us, it's about learning how to surrender to their power. To learn when to sit on the sand and watch them and when to jump on the surfboard and ride them. I think that's what I'll allow more of this year.