Over ten years ago I was unanchored. I’d been living in Central America and with no job, home or family I had nothing, and as Bob Dylan says “When you have nothing, you have nothing to lose.”
I took that advice to heart. In that moment of “having nothing” I realized I actually had everything. That was one of those “big turning points” and I made my way to Vancouver. I didn’t know a soul, and I lived at a hostel before I found a place to live. I slowly started to anchor into my new habitat.
They say a cat has nine lives, I might be running out of mine. But maybe us humans get more than 9 lives.
If you’re like me you might find that you’ve anchored in and out of several lives and may be finding yourself at a turning point again.
It’s often at the crossroads where we get to choose again. And it’s the choices we make that have the power to recreate our lives.
I love talking to my elders. And when I say “elders” I normally mean people in their sixties, seventies and beyond. People who have wisdom to share from sheer time and experience. I’ve come to see that we definitely have more than 9 lives and life is filled with opportunities. Our job is to choose.
The “opportunities” we get may not always look like an “opportunity”
For example, a breakup or layoff may seem like a “bad thing” but it could be the opportunity of a lifetime.
And sometimes that “opportunity of a lifetime” ends up being your biggest challenge.
Our job, as we walk through this opportunity of life is to be awake enough to choose, As Mark Divine says your life is nothing more than your moment to moment choices. And as Caroline Myss says we have no idea what’s a Big Choice, and what’s a small choice.
We might think a Big Choice is deciding if we move towns, or get married. We might think a small choice is whether we go to the grocery store now or tomorrow.
But sometimes it’s those seemingly insignificant choices that truly change the trajectory of our lives.
So really, our power is only right here, right now, in this moment, as it shows up, to make the best choice we can right now. And our best choices come from anchoring into our center, our core and choosing from that space of “inner rightness.” This is the place of personal power: our only true power.
It’s common and easy to go through the motions of life staying in the “safe zone” because you crave certainty. The truth is – that’s a choice and sometimes there’s a segment of our life, or our entire life where we cling onto our anchors for safety, or at the very least perceived safety.
The other choice is surrender. This is letting all anchors go. It’s letting go of the crumbling relationship without trying to keep it together. It’s walking away from the job that’s causing you more angst than growth. It’s being OK with not knowing where you’ll live next month because everything is in flux and that’s OK.
Sometimes when we allow ourselves to be unanchored from our securities it allows ourselves to sail towards where we’re really meant to go.
We can cut off the flow of life by trying to fixate and control outcomes, or we can raise our hands up and say “Ok God. Im kinda’ done trying to control things right now. I surrender. I take all anchors off. May I flow.”
When we do that, there may be waves of fear and doubt that rattle us up, but as we take a deep breath we’ll have a deeper knowing that we’re sailing in the right direction.
You’ll know you’re sailing in the right direction because deep down you actually feel safe.
Safety doesn’t always look like the house, job, marriage, and pension. Sometimes safety is knowing you’re action is with heart, integrity, and an unshakeable inner anchor that nothing outside of yourself can disrupt as you return to your clear and calm centre.
This is the place of your personal power. It’s unshakeable and you’re the only one who owns it.
4-Step Method to Return to Your Centre:
1.Become aware when you feel off centre. Feeling off centre is anytime too many thoughts are rolling around in your head and feeling rattled about what to do.
2.Do what you need to release the tension: it might be a deep breath, it might be going out for a run or going out to nature.
3.Meditate. Even if you think you can’t: set your alarm anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes. Sit on your bed, the ground, or even lay down. Whether you follow your breath or let your thoughts jumble around a little bit, remind yourself to be aware and to observe your thoughts, and remind yourself that your thoughts aren’t necessarily true. Being able to watch the rise and fall and fluctuation of your thoughts is the start to releasing the “noise” and quieting down to your still centre.
As you feel yourself shift into a clearer centre – this is the perfect time to sense what choice is the clearest, whole choice to make. Sometimes we know exactly what to do. Other times there is no clear direction. In this case, it usually means “do nothing” …..This is about surrender, and keep practicing steps 1-3…..Keep surrendering unless a very clear action step comes through from a calm and clear space.