August 13, 2012

When You Let Go…

You never know what kind of obstacles will be thrown your way!

Over the course of this current year, the foundation for most of my decisions, perspectives, and innovations in my life this year have been about embracing “trust.”  This means that whatever is happening around me — directly or indirectly in my life — I am trusting that it is part of my journey.  The decisions I make, the behaviors I engage in, and the way I manage conflict and stress is focused on embracing my commitment to trusting that this is the course for my life.  In trusting, I am not focused on wants or expectations for my life, rather I am celebrating and embracing every experience as an opportunity to learn, grow and share from it.

Several weeks ago I introduced and invited many of my closer contacts to join me on a 100Day Challenge.  The purpose of this challenge was to encourage others to commit to engage in an activity that will generate an effective, positive influence and outcome in their lives.

Several people who engaged in their 100Day Challenge embraced a similar commitment to mine regarding trust.  While they are using terms like “surrender” and “allowing” they are very similar to “trusting” or “faith” when listening to their explanation leof their challenge.  Their experiences relating to the challenge has resulted in peace and energy in their life.  In discovering peace they have become aware of the reality that there are only two things we can control in our life — our attitude and our effort.  The result of merely focusing on managing these two components in their life have brought them peace and prevented them from being distracted by occurances that they cannot control.

Despite what may happen and occur in our lives, we have no control over them, cannot change or stop them, and cannot make others change or stop what they are doing.  All we truly have is the power to manage or control is our response, our focus, our commitments and our behaviors in the face of these events.  There is a misplaced perception that we can control our outcomes, when we really cannot.  We do have the ability to influence future outcomes by our commitment to our vision and our behaviors.  However, we cannot control any outcome because they are completely dependent upon the engagement, participation, enthusiasm or decisions of others — something we have zero control over.

Surrendering, trusting, or allowing is recognizing that our life is not completely in our control.  There is peace in actually letting go of the wheel.  Many of us spend our whole lives believing we are defining our outcomes and go crazy when we realize that we can’t control things like we used to.  In reality, we never had control.

Once we embrace that reality, we can now focus only on what we can control and influence.  There is less energy spent attempting to make thinks happen to our expectations and wants.  We are now free to focus on the events as they occur and decide, based on our desires, values, and commitments, how we are going to manage this event.

Life is about choices. Life will throw things at us that are disruptive, painful, scary and hurtful.  We cannot change what happens to us.  What we can change is how we are going to respond to them.  We can trust that this is part of our journey.  We can embrace that this part of our journey is part of the learning process.  Or, we can attempt to figure out how to change its course and fight the current.  The more I have trusted, the more I let go, the more I learn and celebrate.  There is peace and happiness in this process.  It starts with surrendering any belief that I am in control and ends with trustfully embracing the path of my journey.

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About Dave Cooke

Dave Cooke is a dad on a mission. His mission is to help parents get control of their lives over the powerful, destructive influences of a child's addiction. As the father of a son in a ten year heroin battle, Dave knows all to well the challenges parents and families face. He also knows there is a way to find peace in the chaos. It is his mission to help parents discover their path to a healthier, balanced life even if a child's active addiction is still part of their daily journey.