Life is what happens to you while you are making other plans. ~ John Lennon
Are you one of those people who is always making plans? It’s a natural reaction to living in a world which seems way out of control. Do you have a plan—maybe even a “Plan B”—for the life that stretches out ahead of you? I once heard someone say: “Plan B? Why I am long past that. I’m already on Plans X, Y, and Z!” And she was a very young woman. That’s the trouble with plans; they have a way of spinning away from you—sometimes in a direction you never wanted to go.
If you find yourself pushing too hard, trying to assure that life will go according to your plan, stop and think for a moment. Where do your plans come from? Do they spring from other people’s expectations? Are you dodging fearful scenarios by planning ways not to encounter them? Where are you looking for guidance as you attempt to map out your life? Have you consulted the Divine Plan that underlies all of life, including yours?
It took me many years of struggle and study, prayer and exploration before I realized that almost in spite of myself, the Divine was at work in my life. How did I come to the path I am on today? I now see how divinely guided I was even when it didn’t look that way at all. On the surface, it may seem that my start in the corporate world was an aberration from my true path as a spiritual teacher and energy healer. But I soon realized that my career as an attorney, not to mention my abusive childhood, had been blessings in disguise. One of the tasks involved in effecting healing transformations in others is forming unbending intent—the same kind, ironically, that wins lawsuits. So much of the left-brained, linear, analytical thinking that I learned in law school and practiced as an attorney became surprisingly handy in the field of energy medicine.
Whatever your particular journey has been, rest assured that nothing happens in your life that isn’t part of the Divine plan. Everything will serve your higher purpose in some way. Take a moment to re-imagine your own story, to see the obstacles and traumas and disciplines of your life as the necessary foundation for your spiritual development and the accomplishment of your true purpose. Your Divine plan has been in place all along as a source of safety and comfort.
Students sometimes tell me that they think letting go of what they cannot control is an admission of failure. But it can be exactly the opposite. Surrendering to a higher power, or simply to the concept that forces larger than yourself are at work in the universe, is empowering. Letting go, relinquishing your need to have it your way and allowing other options and possibilities to emerge, opens you to receiving and achieving success.
Balance between voicing your desires, taking action, and allowing what is meant to happen is key here. Stop pushing…relax…allow…surrender. Ask yourself the following questions: Do I tend to direct and orchestrate excessively? What is my underlying fear? What would happen in this particular instance if I just relaxed and let go?
Answering these questions truthfully, without pretense, can be part of your healing. Surrender isn’t simply a word or a thought; it is a state of being. If you tend to over-control both yourself and those around you, make your new mantra: “I choose to surrender to the powers of the universe in the running of my life, my health, my relationships, my finances, and all the small stuff, too.” You will feel a lot more relaxed and you won’t feel so alone.
The classic steps on the road to surrender are:
- Make no judgments.
- Have no expectations.
- Give up the need to know why.
- Trust that unscheduled events are a form of direction.
A mantra of surrender called the Serenity Prayer is said by Twelve Step groups in all it’s various incarnations: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”
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