“Get into the flow” has been a catchy phrase for several decades. We think we know what it means: good stuff happens, right? Is that all it’s about?
If you’ve ever been aware that you were in flow, you know how good that feels. We’re actually always in the flow, but the fact is we don’t always feel it or, rather, we’re not always aware of it. The “flow” is a stream of consciousness and energy that is always in motion, always evolving. It’s the All That Is that we are part of. We’re in the stream at all times, but it can feel as though we aren’t. Why is that? Since we’re always in the stream, we can only feel or believe that we aren’t, which means any perceived separation from the stream is just that: a perception, not a Truth. So, to be in flow is often, but not always, a conscious choice, and to be out of flow is always a subconscious choice (who would consciously choose to be out of the flow?). Whichever our choice, it then becomes our state of being and an experience.
I was contemplating what it means to be in flow and these words came to me: “You have to trust, to be in flow; and to be in flow, you have to trust.” The words clarified the process I’ve experienced: Each requires and results in the other. When you trust Source to act in your behalf and trust that all your needs are always and in all ways met, you’re in flow. When you’re in flow, you trust that Source always and in all ways meets your needs and acts in your behalf. And that trust leads you to feel serene, open, and receptive. But, of course, there’s more to this—there always is.
There are aspects of being in flow. One aspect is non-resistance to what-is. This doesn’t mean you have to like or “want” what-is; you just have to release your resistance about it. This includes anger, frustration, self-doubt, and trying to force your will on others and or the situation. Non-resistance does not mean you allow improper behavior or abuse or don’t do what you need to do to affect improvement. Non-resistance means that rather than wallowing in negativity, you find a way to get your awareness back in alignment with trust in Source, which puts you back into the flow so that right solutions come to you and or happen for you. Again, there is more to understand about this, which I’ll get to. Just know that release of resistance is a key that opens a door to a magical realm within you and in your life.
During one of my morning meditations, I looked at something I’d been saying: “It is Truth that my abundance, prosperity, and well-being are always and in all ways supplied by Source.” A realization caused me to adjust that statement to “It is Truth that my abundance, prosperity, and well-being are Source.” Many of us, despite what we know or practice, still tend to perceive Source as something separate from us, and that our abundance, prosperity, and well-being are also separate from us. But, this is not so. There is only Source. Everything in existence is Source. We are individualized expressions of Source. Just as we are always in the stream, everything and everyone we interact with is Source, which includes us. This is something to wrap your mind and understanding around. It may take a while.
Maybe you know how to get yourself—your awareness—into the flow and maybe you don’t. Maybe you’d like some tips on how to do this quicker and easier. There are some things to consider about this first, because the things to consider are also tips.
For example, what about when you ask or pray for something? Do you feel in flow at such times, or do you feel outside of it? One way to get into flow at such times is to understand that the ultimate prayer or request and the ultimate answer are the same, or should be—if you truly desire to be in flow: “Thank you for always and in all ways acting in and for my highest good and the highest good of all involved, and always in right timing.” For you to be fully on board with this and trust it, as your own practice, there’s something you need to understand: sometimes the answer may feel like it’s anything but the answer, until the moment you realize it is.
One personal example is this: I had a serious, debilitating experience going on for me and nothing I tried worked to shift it. After struggling with this for a Very Long Time, I finally realized I was addressing the situation through resistance, even though I believed I was trying to be constructive and productive in my attempts to affect a solution or resolution, also known as trying to control everything and everyone involved so I could feel better. So I said, “Source, I’m leaving my ego’s need to fix this the way it wants it fixed out of this and I’m turning this matter over to you, because, frankly, I don’t know what the hell to do about it. I trust you to act in and for my highest good and the highest good of all involved.” And, I meant it. I was flat-out frustrated, and I knew frustration was not the path that would get me where I wanted to be.
Well, a lot of shift had to hit the fan first. And, yes, there were many moments (days during a several-month period) when I was anything but serene. Then something happened: What was needed showed up, or, rather, unfolded, in its right timing. I soon realized how everything that had happened had been necessary, and how utterly brilliant it all was. There was no way I could ever have accomplished the inner and outer outcome on my own, and I really mean that. The design plan was flawless. Only a consciousness that had all the information could accomplish that outcome. What was needed was provided, even if it felt at times like I was in hell or at least purgatory while getting there.
I realize that not everyone thinks about these things the same way I do. For some, they perceive only what they see and never go deeper. I see beyond what appears evident (eventually, and because I look for it because I KNOW it’s there): I see the cosmic tapestry where all the threads contribute to the bigger picture, if you will. And sometimes what I perceive about events could or would make some people feel uncomfortable or even angry and absolutely ready to dispute my interpretation.
An example of this is a friend who had to say goodbye to her elderly, failing, beloved dog. That’s a heartache that only someone who’s been there can empathize with. About a year later, she and her husband had their first child, and the child, it turned out, was allergic to dogs. As painful as losing her dog had been, imagine the heartache that would have happened had she been forced to face the situation that could have arisen. Every living thing has its time and purpose. And, there is a higher-level communication between all things that is going on at all times that we are not consciously aware of, until we see the evidence of it, if we use our “eyes” to see it with. This kind of awareness is another form of being in flow, as are moments of intuition.
Another form of being in the flow is to realize the truth that “No man is an island.” Just as we often perceive Source and our good, our resources, as outside of us, we can also perceive ourselves and our resources as separate from others. The no-separation Truth ties in with another statement I make during my morning meditation: “Thank you for my ongoing unlimited increase in Mind, Wisdom, Mindfulness, Intuition, Serenity, Money, Energy, Creativity, Spiritual Realization, Well-Being, and (something private to me that also serves others as well as me).”
Each of the aspects I listed are obviously good things to have and experience, and perhaps you can see why anyone would want them to be part of their being and life. But one morning, the realization came to me that not only do these things serve and benefit me, but that they also allow me to serve and benefit others in ways appropriate for them and for me—and are meant to do so. No man is an island—ever—except in his own mind and or heart.
Suddenly, my statement had an entirely new texture and I had an entirely new understanding and feeling (realization) within me. To be in flow means we have to realize that it’s not a one-way street that flows into our life and stops there. This may seem obvious, but is it really integrated as your understanding and way of thinking, feeling, and being? Whatever we desire or need and receive and have is meant to flow to us, for us, and through us in some way, at some time, and in some measure. That awareness, that consciousness, that realization is another form of being in flow.
If you’ve had any level of struggle in your life, it’s possible that your primary focus has been on receiving; and you may have felt that as soon as you have extra to give or share, you’ll give or share it. Apply my list to this, as though it were your own, and see what comes up for you. Here’s the list again: ongoing unlimited increase in Mind, Wisdom, Mindfulness, Intuition, Serenity, Money, Energy, Creativity, Spiritual Realization, and Well-Being. Can you feel the benefit to you and to others, if these are your experiences? Can you perceive how life is richer for all involved when they overlap?
In times of struggle, appreciation is definitely a form of putting yourself back into the flow. Say money is a bit tight, but there are things you need to take care of that require money. Maybe a lump sum shows up for you or maybe various amounts show up at different times, and what you experience is each need being able to be met at the right time—maybe not ahead of time, as your ego aspect would prefer, but in the right timing. Any moment when you can genuinely appreciate how this is working out for you is a moment that puts you—through your awareness—back into the flow.
Being in the flow, where you receive what it is you desire and need is wonderful. But being in the flow where you understand the greater give-and-receive loop that feels so good is even better. It’s a higher level of being in flow. When we practice being in the flow, we truly do not have to seek what we need and want, it comes to us in expected, unexpected, and wonderful ways, and often with a promptness that is astonishing, as Dr. Ernest C. Wilson stated. It’s the ultimate way to work smarter, not harder. It’s a good practice, one you’ll appreciate.
Practice makes progress.
© Joyce L. Shafer
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Joyce L. Shafer is a Life Empowerment Coach dedicated to helping people feel, be, and live their true inner power. She’s author of “I Don’t Want to be Your Guru, But I Have Something to Say” and other books/e-books, and publishes a free weekly online newsletter that offers empowering articles. See all that’s offered by Joyce and on her site at http://stateofappreciation.weebly.com