As someone who has used willpower most of her life to get things done, I know what it feels like to push productivity, to force something into completion. Generally, this way of operating works, it gets things done, it produces results. But it’s not always pleasant. At best, it can feel like swimming upstream: things are happening, just not as easily and effortlessly as we’d like them to. At worst, this way of operating can hurt, as in physically, the body. Stress, anyone?
When I started working for myself, I became aware of two fundamental problems with this way of operating. The first was that it wasn’t highly effective: my projects, though they ultimately got completed, suffered a series of fits and starts and setbacks that left me frustrated and exhausted. The second problem was that I was in constant physical back pain. Was there a way to work that didn’t cause chronic tension in my body? Was there a way to find some sort of flow or current in my work? Was there a gentler yin to the forceful yang that I had known all my life?
Ease and flow is available to us. In fact, I see it as somewhat of a birthright. We have energy coursing through us at all times; we deserve to know how to tap into and utilize this energy for our benefit. And when we do tap in, and when we feel the pleasure of this current in our bodies, we have the opportunity to walk through life creating from inspiration, meaning that what we do is an authentic expression of that which lights us up. We begin to create outside of survival mode. We construct a pro-active rather than re-active reality, and at that point, we are experiencing the Creator within. Hello bliss!
For some of you this will resonate, you know this place, you are doing this already. Others may be sure that none of what I just said applies to them: there is simply no room for ‘inspirational authentic expression’ within or after an exhausting day at work. This may be true: your job may not be particularly creative or inspiring to you, and there may be little energy at the end of the day for anything other than crashing on the couch. But joy is still available to you. You can still be easy about how you do what you need to do; you can still bring a sense of flow to your tasks. Cultivating this might be particularly useful if you feel regularly mentally and physically gnarled by stress.
So how do we start to let go, to welcome ease and fluidity into our daily functioning? Let’s start with the body. If we can be easy in the body, then our mind will follow (picture yourself post-massage). If we can be easy in the body, then we are moving through life pain-free. With the absence of pain in the body, we are able to be present with What Is, and that can be a pretty delicious place to be. What will you create from there?
#1 – Just do it
The fun thing about cultivating something as potentially abstract as ‘ease’ is that you can practice it anywhere. So just do it. When you notice you are holding in your body, let go. Clamping your jaw on the subway? Release it. Furrowed brow? Let it go. It doesn’t have to be dramatic, it can take one second. The beauty of practicing this way is that it’s not a ‘to do.’ Once you decide that you want ease in your life, you will automatically start to notice when you are not easy. It might be all the time, that’s ok, just take it moment by moment. And if you choose not to ease up in that moment, that’s ok too.
If this sounds like a joke and ease is a needle in a haystack to you, there’s help. CranioSacral specifically targets unwinding in the body. Energy work, bodywork, Contiuum, yoga, take a class or see a practitioner. Give yourself the gift of knowing what relief feels like so that you can find and re-create it for yourself.
If you have chronic pain or tension due to an injury or structural misalignment, one-on-ones with the appropriate practitioner is a must.
#2 – Move through inner space
Play with deliberately creating more ease in your body and start to expand the places that already feel good. Find a place in your body that feels pain free, spacious. Gently breathe into it. Without forcing, allow it to expand. Witness the movement with your inner eye. Imagine that this expansion is light-filled from within. Sit and watch and be with what emerges. You may want to move your body according to where the breath, light, and space are traveling. You may have some sounds or words for what you are experiencing. Get your amoeba on.
The body can start to unwind as you allow it to express itself through sound and movement. You may be surprised to notice that your chronically tense spots feel better.
#3 – Access the flow
If you can use the tools above to get your body to a place where you can sit comfortably for five or ten minutes, then you can access your own divine flow of energy. Simply put, this feels awesome, like a surge of power flowing through your body. The steps to do this are at the end of the article. Try them, practice them, and if you need more help, come to one of my workshops.
#4 – Allow it to work for you
From here you can start to use ease and flow as tools. If you don’t have any experience with this, once you start playing with energy and tapping in, you’ll know what I mean. It’s simple, and profound. Allow the flow of your energy to inform creative projects, or call it in when you are feeling stuck and need to be productive. Relax into it and enjoy what comes.
You have options in how you operate – where do you need structure, and where do you need fluidity? Where do you need to stay the course, and where do you want some flexibility? It’s not about having or doing one over the other, it’s about finding what balance works for you, what makes you most productive, what has you be most happy.
What is offered above is just one way, and it is only the beginning. As we know, there are many ways, and each of us will have our own amazing experiences with bringing into our lives what we want and need. It will look different for all us what, which is part of what makes life so rich.
Accessing your Cosmic Flow
- Connect to your dan tien (approx. one inch below your belly button)
- Imagine a lazer line of light emerging from your dan tien. Ground this all the way into the core of the Earth.
- As you connect with the Earth, allow her loving energy to travel back up and fill your body. Breathe and enjoy.
- Staying grounded, bring the lazer line up from your dan tien through the center of your body up and out of the crown of your head.
- Connect this upward energy into Source energy (big bang, Creator, Spirit, God).
- As you connect with Source, allow this energy to surge down into your body (ideally grounding this back down into the Earth).
- Breathe and enjoy. You are a vessel channeling divine Earth and Source energies.
From here you can sit with the project at hand or a blank slate and allow your creativity to flow.