“Love” was my theme for 2013, and it really surprised me how much I did learn about love, within the year. The walls have been crumbling, and I have begun to understand love on a very profound, spiritual level. Honestly, I considered making “Love” my one-word theme again, not just for 2014 but for the rest of my life.
However, life continues to teach me new lessons, and I’ve found another word, that aligns very closely with love. And that word is, “Surrender.” For so long, I’ve viewed surrender as a negative notion, as one that means giving up or quitting.
My views, though, were changed when I had e-mailed one of my friends about all the changes I intended to make in my life. I had been in Houston for a couple of months, and I found that I was still backsliding and I was still fearful and coping with (perceived) unworthiness. I was going to change things, be more disciplined, etc. etc.
My friend wrote me back, “The one thing you haven’t done is surrender.”
At first, I thought that was a compliment. That I had rediscovered my old grit and insistence on pressing on, even when it seems impossible. I wasn’t giving up. I was going to become the person I wanted to be, no matter what!
But, on further examination, I saw that this was not a compliment at all. My friend was telling me that I needed to stop trying to manipulate everything. I needed to keep trying to get my hands in everything, and just allow life–and myself–to grow and evolve.
It isn’t through muscling ourselves that we change and grow. It’s through awareness, understanding, and acceptance. When we can see what’s going on, it will naturally change, if it needs to. It can’t be forced.
And life is the same way. We waste energy trying to get others to like us, trying to protect ourselves and make things turn out the way we want them to. We need to do what we need to do, without wasting energy on useless endeavors. There are things that are outside of the realm of our control, and we need to surrender, and to accept that.
Surrender is difficult, because we don’t like to be in control. We want to hang on, and force things to stay the way they are, or force them to change in the way that we want them to. But our forcing is like pressing on a brick wall. It’s nothing more than a waste of energy.
Once we see that, we see that surrender is our only option. We need to let go. We need to stop trying to control the wind, and, instead, adjust our sails.