For most of my life I pushed. I worked hard, "efforting", trying. Did that make me happier? In retrospect, not one bit. It took me many years to realize the wisdom in accepting the present moment as it is, allowing it to unfold naturally without resistance or judgment. Embracing life's flow and discovering a sense of peace and harmony within ourselves is part of the spiritual Law of Least Effort.
Acceptance is a conscious choice to acknowledge the present moment just as it is, without attempting to change it or impose our will upon it. It is an act of surrendering to the flow of life and embracing all its imperfections and uncertainties. When we resist what is, we create unnecessary struggle and suffering for ourselves. As I often tell my clients, what you resist, persists.
Nature operates effortlessly and harmoniously. Acceptance is one step to opening ourselves up to the abundant energy of the universe. Moving out of a constant state of working and trying, and into a life that of less effort, your days become a dance of grace and ease. There have been times in my life recently where I have felt that dance, where life is flowing and I am riding along the wave. It is a mystical and magical experience when able to tap into it.
Acceptance does not imply resignation or apathy; rather, it is an active process of embracing reality. It encourages us to let go of the illusion of control and embrace the natural unfolding of events. When we resist what is, we create internal discord, wasting valuable energy on fighting against the inevitable. However, acceptance liberates us from this struggle and allows us to redirect our energy towards conscious action and personal growth.
Sometime acceptance means we lose something, or someone in our lives. There is a grief that companions that loss, letting go of what is not in alignment and accepting that its time in our life has ended. There can be gratitude for what we have had, for it made us who we are. Goodness knows, I have been there, with loss of people and things and roles in my life. The sadness was there, the grief real, but also the gratitude and knowing that it was time to move on.
Acceptance calls us to suspend judgment and see things as they truly are, free from the filter of our conditioning or expectations. When we judge, we create separation and disharmony within ourselves and with the world around us. By adopting a non-judgmental attitude, we cultivate compassion and empathy, fostering a deeper connection with ourselves and others. Through this lens of acceptance, we can find beauty and meaning even in the most challenging circumstances.
The journey of life is a tapestry of experiences, both pleasant and unpleasant. When we try to force outcomes or resist the natural ebb and flow, we disrupt the delicate balance of existence. However, when we allow things to unfold naturally, we align ourselves with the inherent wisdom of the universe. This doesn't mean we become passive observers; rather, we become active participants who respond mindfully and gracefully to the rhythm of life.
Like so much of our spiritual life, this is a practice. Awareness when we are pushing spaghetti up that hill and things are harder than they should be, is the sign to step back. To inquire and discern where the effort is not bringing results or rewards, or when the energy in our body feels constricted rather than expansive.
Where in your life may you have the opportunity to effort less?