When I took swimming lessons as a child, one of the first skills that we were taught was how to float. To an observer it may appear that it’s easy to just lay back and let the water carry you, but It’s not as simple as it looks. To successfully float on the surface of the water you must completely relax, let go, and allow yourself to be held. For many of us, fear and a lack of trust prevents us from experiencing this complete state of release and surrender. When it comes to floating, if we shrink or overthink, we sink, and flailing leads to failing.
This is all quite similar to how we lead our personal and professional lives. Whether you are leading a team, a family, or yourself, there are a lot of lessons that can be learned and applied. Here are a few strategies to support you as you engage in the freedom of floating.
Release to Realize. Many times, the thing standing between where we are and where we want to be is our need to release control. We often spend a ton of precious energy doing things that someone else can do just as good as, or better than we can. This is not the best use of our time or our talents. To realize our goals and dreams we must be willing to eliminate, delegate, automate, or systematize tasks and responsibilities that we are not uniquely suited to do. There is someone else who would delight in duties that we find miserable. There are systems that can support us in reclaiming our time and reallocating it to our most important relationships and the roles for which we have the highest passion and proficiency.
What are you spending time doing that someone else can do just as well as or better than you?
Expand to Elevate. If we want to feel the freedom of floating, we must take up space. The moment we contract or shrink our bodies, we begin to go under. Somewhere along the way you may have been made to feel or believe that who you are, as you are, is too much. We betray our souls by staying small and dimming our light. Like drowning, we slowly sink into feelings of despair because we are not living in our truth. Expanding into the fullness of your authentic self is like the lifejacket that will allow you to rise.
Where are you shrinking, contracting, or staying small? What shift needs to happen for you to return to your true self so that you can rise?
Surrender to Sharing. When you surrender to the water, you are lifted and held. Similarly, a requirement of growth is getting help. Sharing responsibilities in your personal and professional life frees up your capacity to focus on what matters most. While reading the book Drama Free: A Guide to Managing Unhealthy Family Relationships by Nedra Glover Tawwab, I learned about counterdependency. In essence, this is the extreme avoidance of asking for help which is rooted in the fear of appearing to being in need. You don’t have to do life all alone. Asking for and receiving help is not a sign of weakness. It is a strength and a powerful pathway to growth and healing.
Who has been waiting for an opportunity to uplift and support you? How might you allow yourself to be held?
This week I challenge you to surrender to the freedom of floating. Do a figurative trust fall into the open arms of all of the expansiveness and abundance that is available to hold you and uplift you so that you can rise.
I am releasing control to realize my dreams.
I am expanding my authenticity to elevate my life.
I am surrendering to sharing what I am carrying with those who are here to help me.