July 1, 2007

Relaxing in the Rapids

rapids.jpgTwo weeks ago, floating down Cataract Canyon with my sweetie and three rafts-full of his rocket scientist (really) co-workers, I picked up some great Law of Attraction life wisdom from our river guides. Trip leader, Lorenzo, gave us safety instructions the day we were due to run class 3, 4 and 5 rapids. I’ve already written about several life lessons I learned from Lorenzo’s safety training, but this tip here is my favorite:
We’re told at length how to stay safe on river rapids. (Basically, stay in the boat!) But worst case scenario, if you’re ejected, and you go under, and you get confused and scared and out of oxygen and panicked, Lorenzo gave this instruction: “Relax.”
Relax?! Yeah, right. I’d like to see that.
“Yes,” he says, “Relax.” Because when you do, the river will spit you out. It’ll shoot you right back to the top where you will be able to breathe again and can reconnect with your boat.
He told us if we’re in the rapids under water, we should NOT expend energy trying to swim. Do NOT waste time trying to go anywhere or do anything. First of all, we probably wouldn’t go the right direction anyway, and second, we wouldn’t make any progress. We’d also be too exhausted to give ourselves real help. (Self-rescue is the best rescue – I’ll blog about that later!) Not to mention we’d be missing out on the ride of our lives while we struggle against the stream!
Rather, Lorenzo said, “Relax and let the stream spit you out.” Which it will happily do, if you just stop fighting it. It’ll take you where you need to go.
Sound familiar?
The stream will take us where we need to go. Everything we want is downstream. Stop the struggle, stop resisting. Just go with the flow, and enjoy the ride.
Yeah, Relax.
All right, I’m starting to like the sounds of this advice!
So much so that as we round the corner on our first set of rapids, and I can hear the approaching roar of water, I get excited at the thought of going for a ride in the stream. I’m ready to put all my safety training to work!
But then we get there, and I completely change my mind about that. I did everything in my power to stay in the boat! Not that I don’t trust the stream, but the boat ride was exciting enough. Full of “woo hoos” and a couple first degree screams. (And not just from the ladies.)
Just what we came here for, right? The ride of our lives!
So, now that we’re back on dry land living our daily lives, it seems worth asking the question: what are we struggling against? What are we resisting? What could we relax into, and enjoy more of? Where could we let the stream work on our behalf, while we just relax and enjoy the ride?
I know I keep saying this, and Universe keeps proving me wrong, but I honestly don’t see how it could get any better than THIS! Thanks for being part of my ride, everyone. (And for letting me be part of yours.) It wouldn’t be the same without you!

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