Swimming against the tide, climbing the hill and when to relax
Is it sunset or sunrise
Sorry but some battles must be fought.
The sixty year old went into the sea for the first time in a decade. He swam a ways out and enjoyed the gentle waves that rolled over him and the sky above and sea he was in. So taken away was he that he did not notice the current had taken him a full mile south along the shore. When he noticed, he began his leisurely swim to shore. But alas he began to get pulled further out and further south. He was in the mighty Pacific, which is anything but peaceful as the name implies.
Of course like any good vacationer swimmer he first panicked, started swimming harder and hyperventilating only to further be pulled out to sea. Gulps of salt water began to further feed his hysteria and further over he could see huge breakers smashing and gnarling about. First it was his calf to cramp up and then a bicep. This, he thought, for sure would be his last swim. He relaxed and puffed up his chest with deep breathes and put his head back and almost serenely looked around to enjoy the world this one last time. All his work accomplishments flashed in a second, yes he had been successful there but it now seemed irrelevant. But then thoughts lingered on family and friends and a smile crossed his lips as he had done well there and this brought him even more peace and joy.
As he approached the thundering waves his body was actually jerked in the direction of the shore..Again and again as long as he stayed still and let the new current take him. He was falling into a hypothermia. And all was about to go black as his toe gently touched the sand and with the next rolling current he was walking onto the shore.
Our friend here just taught us when to fight the current and when to just relax and go with the flow.
Some battles we just have to fight
So much is a struggle
Have you ever fully disagreed with someone and at there statement you fully reject, instead of saying "no......."? Of course you have you have argued or you would not be reading this. But next time try saying "yes.........". What I mean is approach the argument by jumping in the flow of the river and instead of trying to dam it up and change it's course, gently guide the person to shore. Go with the flow of their thoughts and try to redirect the person rather than the current they are riding. Two things will happen: you will see things from their perspective and, you will have a shared experience that bonds you above the issue of the current current.
The result may not be what you intended --- that is good, it means you are open to growth. And that you realized the flow is bigger than you. Or you may be found by a new current that brings you closer together and both to a shore which forms a new foundation of understanding. That is where you build your house.
A wise cowboy does not lasso the runaway horse and try to stop it dead in it's tracks. He lassos and then slowly and carefully brings the horse to turn in another direction and then and only then attempts to fully restrain the beast.
Sometimes it is better to just stop
Back to our friend the swimmer.
Life is really good when you get the flow of it. Nature especially follows a natural order. Of course I contend that even man is part of nature and there is order there also, just a lot less predictable.
Our friend in the sea say a chaos, and current against his desires. But he need not have gone through that exercise in futility. On the other hand perhaps he needed it to remind him of his lack of control.
If he would have been a man in tune he would have known the rule to relax and swim either with or at least not head on into the rip tide. His serenity would not have required a path of panic. Had he not reacted and instead taken stalk of what was he would have seen immediately that the crashing waves, while violent at first sight meant an landward flow. In fact he could have happily ridden a wave in and enjoyed the ride.
We are wise to think of such matters in our daily lives. Practice going against the current for exercise and to be "in shape" when it is required. But realize that we are more often benefited by relaxing and setting our intentions to go with the flow and look for opportunities to make the most of it. More often it is enough to work diligently toward keeping our heads above water while riding the current. If we do that and keep our eyes open our journey will have enough detours to keep us busy and well.