Flow is in the Swift Rapids and the Gentle Floats of Life. Just like a rafting trip down your favorite river, life offers a series of quick rapids and relaxing floats. At times we are required to run the rapids with a quick response that calls on the stored experience and skills in our subconscious to get through safely, relatively unscathed, but more experienced, decisive, and knowledgeable. Other times life is an easy float that allows us to relax, reflect, and rejuvenate. In the rapids of life and the easy floats we gain the most when we are in the present moment and can find our states of flow.
“Rivers know this: there is not hurry. We shall get there someday”
Pooh’s Little Instruction Book, inspired by A. A. Milne
This week we will look at the flow of life. We will look at how we flow with life and how we get into the state of flow with our activities. Sometimes I think there is an implication that if we are truly mindful our lives should flow like a shallow lazy stream. But I disagree. Life is like a river, at times rapids challenge our resolve, but those rapids are balanced with times of recovery. It is when we can navigate both that we learn to live in the moments of life.
Life is filled with moments of chaos and instant reaction that make us question “why is this happening?” while allowing us to demonstrate the value of learning from past experiences and applying the gained knowledge to get us through times we would not typically chose for ourselves. It is in these times that we experience quick growth, embrace resilience, and grasp our confidence while humility and the reality of our own humanity surface.
For many the adrenalin of these rapids provides an exciting, even if a little scary, change that will bring us to a new place in life to explore. If we chose the rapid or find it chose us, we all embrace the confidence of our own resilience and knowledge to skillfully navigate the rapids of life.
To balance out the rapids, life is filled with moments of calm; moments of peace and reflection. It is in these moments that we can look back over the rapids of life and embrace the learnings, acknowledge our resilience, and celebrate our survival. It is in these moments of calm reflection that we facilitate intentional growth.
The shallow stream experience is where we review our goals and progress towards them; where we identify the things in life that are not serving us and where we can create new habits that move us towards the life we desire. When we embrace the shallow stream experiences we develop life strategies that allow us to flow with the river of life in the most mindful of ways.
It is my intention to help us all embrace the knowledge from our life experiences and develop the habits that support us to Mindfully Living in the Moment so we can flow with the rapids of life and embrace the relaxing floats. Both the rapids and the floats bring their own version of excitement and energy to our lives and make life the rewarding experience it is when we mindfully experience both.
Today’s Simple Mindfulness Igniter is to observe the flow of your life and your response to the flow. When are you in the rapids and how does that feel? When are you floating with the slow current and how does that feel? When are you the most mindful and when are you the least present? Today observe.
For those taking the Mindfully Living in the Moment Challenge consider your new habit. Does your new habit contribute to a swift rapid or a gentle float experience? It seems like most of the habits we do not chose lead us to the rapids and the habits we chose lead us to the floats, at least this is true in my own life. Is it true for you?