Go With The Flow
I was listening to an audio book recently, “Stiring it Up: How to Make Money and Save the World,” by Gary Hirschberg the CEO of Stoneyfield Farms. One thing he said really caught my attention, he likened success in business and life to the principles of Aikido, a Japanese martial art practice. He said, and I am very poorly paraphrasing here, in Aikido you take your opponents energy and rather than resisting it and absorbing it you simply channel it back to them.
I was really intrigued by that comparison so I looked up Aikido, which literally translated means “the way of harmony of the spirit,” it was created so practitioners could defend themselves while also protecting their attacker from injury. I love this! I agree what a marvelous approach to life and business.
Aikido I learned is performed by blending with the motion of the attacker and redirecting the force of the attack rather than opposing it head-on. This requires less physical strength, because it uses the attackers momentum, with the intention of not causing injury to the attacker.
I think this resonated with me because I have likened my philosophy of being in this life with floating along in a river. When I am going with the flow my life is in harmony, when I fight against the flow by trying to swim back to where I have been life takes more energy and I struggle.
I really needed to hear this particularly at this point in my life. I am heading into unchartered waters both personally and professionally. The landscape of my life has changed so drastically I hardly recognize it. My husband’s parents and my parents are all deceased most losses occurred in 2011. Professionally, I sold my company and have a one year non-solicitation clause. As a result I cannot work in my career field for the next year and interaction with people I used to see everyday, and consider friends, is very limited.
Most of the time, while traversing these uncharted waters, I have my feet firmly pointed downstream and easily going with the flow. However, occasionally I feel pulled to look back, when I do I feel resistance and sometimes struggle to keep my head up. It’s interesting how sometimes I convince myself that the past or what I am familiar with is easier. Nevertheless, if I follow the analogy of Aikido or my own philosophy of a river it’s all about flow and going with the energy rather than resisting it. That translates into continuing on my journey rather than living in the past or swimming ahead in pursuit of some future illusion, both will drain my energy and impair my harmony.
My yoga teacher Jan always reminds us to look to nature when life is difficult. Similar to the seed it does not fret where it lands or struggle to sprout, it simply grows effortlessly where it lands. The seed does not worry about what was or what will be it simply grows in the now.
Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them – that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like. – Lao-Tzu
Posted on January 28, 2013, in Life, Spiritual Journey and tagged aikido, flow, Gary Hirschberg, harmony, jan, lao tzu, river, stillpointe, stoneyfield farms, water, yoga. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.