My next blog post came to me while I was sitting on the beach watching my son gleefully play in the ocean waves. I love catching him in those moments of pure imagination…when no other person or thing is even on his radar. Just him and whatever magical world he has created.
This blog post is about PERCEPTION… AND the possibility that we can SHIFT our thinking to turn EVERY SINGLE obstacle we encounter into the thrill ride of our lives? 3-2-1 Here. We. Go….
As I sat in my cozy beach chair on the surf at a comfortable distance away from the crashing waves…I watched my son play imaginatively in the ocean. He was jumping, punching, kicking, and karate chopping away at the waves crashing toward him. He would get knocked down and swirled around by the rushing water ….and then…he stood back up and went running back toward the crashing waves jumping, punching, kicking, and karate chopping away for the next hour or so.
It got me thinking…isn’t this like LIFE? Waves (or challenges) in our life are inevitable; they are persistent. Some waves are stronger (or more challenging) than others. Some will sway you, some will make you lose your stance and some will knock the wind right out of your lungs. The rhythm of the ocean waves and the trials and tribulations of life are uncannily similar. They come crashing in causing chaos to “f” our day right up, but they always subside leaving a few moments of peace and ease for us to recoup.
HERE IS THE TWIST……
What I found funny about Gavin (and every other child) playing in the waves, was that he WENT BACK for more….every. single. time! Kids love it! They love the challenge, they welcome the adversity, they excitedly anticipate this mighty wave coming their way; Almost with a “bring it on b*%@*” kind of attitude. They willingly dive into the chaos and get swept away, knocked around and tumbled a time or two and then what’s next is so crazy….they stand up, shake it off, catch their bearings and run TOWARDS the next set of crazy ass waves. It’s FUN for them. It’s EXHILARATING. They EMBRACE the impact and ENJOY the experience.
It was like my own wave of an “Ah-hah” moment came crashing in! The Universe and my 8 year old are totally teaching me something amazing right now. What if I could SHIFT my PERSPECTIVE to EMBRACE the WAVES of life. Have fun with them, be IN them instead of trying to run away from them. Keep an eye out for the next wave and get ready for it with anticipation. Know, that of course I’ll get knocked down, whirled around and maybe even scraped up a bit; its inevitable…but then GET UP and keep going, keep playing, keep karate chopping.
What I’m learning is that everything that happens to us, we are meant to feel. Its an opportunity to for us discover ourselves and CHOOSE how we want to experience it. I’m talking about ALL the waves, big and small…like when you spill coffee on your shirt on the commute to work or when some is trash talking on you, when you can’t afford to pay your bills, when someone else got the promotion that you knew you deserved or when someone you love gets an unfavorable diagnosis. NONE of that shit is easy…just like the relentless waves of the ocean aren’t easy. It’s in these moments when we need to access our inner child who is fearlessly frolicking in the turbulent waves. BECAUSE, I do believe that we have a choice; to embrace the experience and “play” and learn a thing or two about ourselves along the way OR to lie down and be swept away into an ocean of fear, loneliness and uncertainty that is MUCH larger than us.
It certainly isn’t easy to have this kind of perspective in the turbulent moments that can occur in our lives. Its a muscle that we have to build BUT I do believe that that there are teachers are all around us if we are willing to just stop and listen. Those few hours on the beach watching my son play in the waves taught me a lesson that I wouldn’t have otherwise saw if I was sitting in my beach chair reading People magazine.
I hope that this blog post has given you an alternative perspective on the waves of life and that you CHOOSE powerfully how you experience them. My hope is that you choose to embrace the waves (and do a karate chop or two ;)