One of the most common themes that has popped up in coaching and counseling sessions as of late is how to find ease in our lives.
As humans, we often have a knack for making things more difficult than they need to be. We frustrate ourselves as we attempt to control things over which we have absolutely no control…and in our lives there are MANY things we cannot control. We end up in a state of desperation and contraction as we use our energy in an attempt to force, coerce, bargain, or plead with life so that things would just go our way, which does nothing but make our ability to cope with what already is even more difficult.
In Martin Seligman’s theory of Well-Being, one of the essential components we can practice is Engagement. This concept is all about being fully present in the moment just as it is. The practice of engagement asks that our minds be where our bodies are and as we tap into using all of our energy in this moment to be with what is already happening, we are able to let go of replaying things from the past or worrying about what *may* happen in the future. The result is more inner ease.
When we are fully present in the moment, we can better recognize what we have control over and what we must accept and move on from. This is the practice of coming into the flow of life. We can achieve more ease in our lives when we are in a state of responding to the present moment rather than reacting based on what we wish were happening instead, what we had pictured in our minds, or how we expected things to go. When we are engaged in the moment, we can choose what to do next by accepting where we are and what we are experiencing.
This process also asks that we trust that life knows what it is doing and that we trust that things outside of our small bubble of control will be handled by some larger force. When we can recognize that our zone of influence is ourselves, we can let go of the responsibility that we carry when we attempt to control anything outside of that zone and, again, we can find ourselves in more ease.
If we envision our lives like a river, we want to find the flow to move with rather than against to make things easier on ourselves. A few examples of moving into the flow of our lives may look like:
- delegating tasks or chores rather than attempting to do it all ourselves
- asking for help or support in coping
- resting rather than doing more
- saying no when we really need to in order to take care of ourselves
- creating time in our schedule to do things that we enjoy rather than putting ourselves last
- doing the most challenging tasks first thing in the day to get them out of the way
- prioritizing self-care so that we feel our best in our bodies, boost health and immunity
- taking a time out to feel whatever we feel
- connecting with other people and, when appropriate, sharing what we are going through
- taking a few long, slow deep breaths in and complete breaths out
Moving toward ease in our lives takes effort as our scarcity culture has trained us into believing things like “good things only come through difficulty”, “life is just hard all of the time”, “nothing good comes easy”, and “rest is a form of laziness”. Sometimes the process of moving into ease may feel counterculture and opposite to what we have been trained into believing we “should” do.
The good thing about the uncertain times we are currently in is that we can create the rules that work best for our minds, bodies, and lives to bring about how we want to feel. We can shift into cooperation with the flow of life and establish a new way of showing up. We can take advantage of the energy of change and adjust how we show up in our lives and what patterns we want to continue living in. We have the power to do that for ourselves.
Leaning into ease in our lives does not mean giving up. It means letting go of making things harder on ourselves than they need to be in order to direct our energy toward what we DO want rather than what we DON’T want. More ease in our minds, emotions, bodies, relationships, and lives will benefit us, as well as everyone we are in contact with.
This week, I invite you to ask how you are making things harder on yourself than they need to be. See how easy you can make it in the moment and what patterns may not be helpful to continue.
I will be practicing right along with you.
Chat again soon,