go with the flow

Go With The Flow: Full Guide

No matter how much structure you establish in your life, there will always be certain things that you can’t control. The fear of the unknown sometimes paralyzes us. We are unable to take action amidst chaos because in our head is endless preconceived notions of how things should unfold. It’s when we learn to “go with the flow”.

Go With The Flow meaning

“Go with the flow” is the act of surrendering to the natural rhythm and flow of the universe, trusting in the divine intelligence that governs all things. Even when we don’t know what the future looks like or how to get there, we still accept that uncertainty as something natural and embrace all things that come our way.

Remind yourself that those thoughts are only YOUR own attachments. They are disguised in the form of hopeful thoughts. “I should be this”, “I should have that”, “It should happen in X way”, “It should turn into Y in Z days”.

Whether it’s about your relationship, career, or health, there will always be unexpected events, and it is the willingness to adapt to them that gives you the calmness in the storm of it all.

Go With The Flow Examples

Let’s say, for example, that you had planned to spend the day outside enjoying a beautiful hike, but the weather turns bad and it starts to rain. Instead of becoming frustrated or upset about the change of plans, you could choose to go with the flow and find an alternative activity to enjoy.

How about an indoor activities to enjoy, such as visiting a local museum or trying out a new restaurant? What can you do spontaneously? Is there a way for you to break the routine and embrace a thing you have never done before?

Or, you could also just let the rain “be” and choose to go for a walk in the rain (!) or find a covered area where you can still enjoy the outdoors scenery without getting too wet. Improvisation can be fun, why not “go with the flow” and let the rain give you a completely new and unique experience?

Well, to be honest, it may sound easier than it really is. In reality, we must have gone angry for all of the things that didn’t go as planned. It is good to be “aware” of your inner world whenever such emotions stir up. This could be achieved through deep meditation sessions, in which you observe closely the emotions that arose when things didn’t go as planned.

Once you gained the awareness of your emotions, you can recognize them when they pop up inside you, and you slowly consider if it is worth it to keep it or just let it pass and carrying on with whatever you are doing?

If you “know” the anxiety, fear, and disappointment that arose in you as soon as the sky changes dark, you will be able to accept them and tell them “Yeah, I know you. Y’all will eventually pass. I don’t have to spend my energy to nurture you.”

Here is a list of the action items you can easily take to go with the flow in your life.

How To Go With The Flow?

1. Understand that everything eventually subsides

Through meditation, we can gain the understanding that everything subsides, everything changes, and nothing stays constant forever. Our thoughts rise and subside, similar to how our emotions also rise and subside. They are only there if we choose to allocate our energy towards them and “nurture” them.

Acknowledge that your emotions are there. They indeed popped up in you. But, at the same time, develop a habit to observe those emotions. Observe closely what “the voice in your head” are rambling about. If you are angry, probably your head will be filled with angry sentences. It’s alright.

You simply look at it and understand that it’s not your job to react. Take comfort in the knowledge that these intense emotions will not last forever.

2. Most things don’t matter. Invest your energy to something that “matters” to you

In today’s fast-paced world, we are often bombarded with information and distractions that can leave us feeling overwhelmed and unfocused. We may find ourselves constantly chasing after the latest trends or trying to keep up with the expectations of others, even if those things don’t truly matter to us.

The truth is, most things in life are inconsequential in the grand scheme of things. We may spend hours worrying about the opinions of others, scrolling mindlessly through social media, or engaging in other activities that do not bring us closer to our goals or make us happy.

By recognizing that most things don’t matter, we can begin to shift our focus towards what truly does.

But…what matters?

I don’t know. You have to answer that yourself. We have the power to choose what matters more to us. For some, it may mean pursuing a career that aligns with their passions and values, while for others, it may mean cultivating meaningful relationships or engaging in creative pursuits.

Find your values and goals. Consciously shift your attention to things that truly matter. Let go of things that do not serve us, such as toxic relationships or unhealthy habits.

When we invest our energy into something that truly matters to us, we are able to experience a sense of purpose and fulfillment that can be difficult to find otherwise. We may find ourselves more focused, motivated, and driven towards achieving our goals. That’s “flow”.

3. Cherish the little things

Take, for example, an artist who is drawing.

When he sets out to create something, he does not approach the task with a fear of making mistakes. That is not going with the flow, but rather, desires and attachments disguised as anxiety.

Instead, he flows with the process of creation, allowing the lines to take shape and form organically. If a stroke of the brush goes wrong, the artist does not see it as a mistake, but as an opportunity to experiment and to create something unique and unexpected. The artist trusts his creative intuition, allowing it to guide him and to lead him to new and exciting possibilities.

The same principle can be applied to mundane household chores, such as washing dishes. Often, people approach these tasks with a sense of dread or obligation, viewing them as tedious and unenjoyable.

Why don’t we approach it as a dance to be enjoyed?

Take pleasure in the simple act of moving our hands in whatever way we want. We can let our minds wander and our imaginations soar. Play some music. Pay attention to the dishes getting cleaner and cleaner after every wipe. You are turning even the most ordinary of moments into something beautiful and profound.

That’s going with the flow. Enjoy what you are doing. Just be in the moment and feel the experience with every you have.

4. Going with the flow is not a lazy and passive approach to life

Going with the flow does not mean that we should simply accept everything that comes our way without question. Rather, it means that we should be discerning in our choices and focus our energy on the battles that truly matter.

At its core, to go with the flow means to just do what you can, where you can, when you can. Just do it. Listen to your intuition, and go in the direction that you feel the calling. While going in that direction, set clear intentions. Define your goals and priorities. Walk on the path towards it, and simply enjoy the journey.

Accept that you don’t know everything and can’t do everything on that journey. It’s okay. Change only what’s in your control. Do not worry about what you can’t change. Be in the present and observe your daily activities more deeply.

5. Expect nothing for your effort

The Bhagavad Gita, an ancient Hindu text, teaches the importance of detachment from the fruits of our labor. This means that we should focus on performing our duties and tasks to the best of our ability, without being attached to the outcome or the rewards that may come from our efforts.

One of the main teachings in the Bhagavad Gita is the concept of karma yoga, or the yoga of action. This involves performing our duties and actions with a sense of detachment, recognizing that the results are ultimately in the hands of a higher power.

When we focus solely on the outcome or the rewards of our actions, we may become overly attached to the results and lose sight of the importance of the process and the journey itself. This can lead to feelings of disappointment or frustration when things do not turn out the way we expected or hoped.

6. Recognize what triggers you

When an intense emotion rose in your, don’t try to fight it. Just look at it and get to know it like a new “friend”. Observe it closely from a distance and see what triggers that emotions to rise. It’s better to observe these experiences rather than reacting to them and being sucked into your underlying instincts.

Once you have learned the details about this “friend”, you will recognize it once it rises again inside you. This takes a lot of time and effort, but it is totally worth it. This friend causes you to act in a certain way and fills you with certain thoughts/emotions, but you are OBSERVING the friend, and you don’t have to react to what the friend brings to your house.

Eventually you gain the capability to just “be” and not get carried away with the currents of your triggers. When you realize that you are not supposed to be reacting all the time, you will truly “go with the flow”.

7. Meditate

To be more aware of your thoughts and emotions, meditate. It’s a simple practice that gives your mind a brief moment of rest. No more thoughts running through your head all the time. You are detached from your thoughts and become a observer.

This observer state is perfect to recognize what triggers you. You become more “clear-headed” and not clouded by judgements and prejudice. You simply observe your thought and not engage with the thought. That’s exactly when you’re going with the flow: letting whatever images that pop up in your mind to pop up, and not interfering with its appearance.

At a higher level, you can meditate in your daily activities. You are doing your task, fully concentrating on whatever problem being solved at the moment. Pay attention to every detail of your activities. Whenever your mind wanders, recognize that, and readjust your attention to the task. It may be a bit difficult to do at first, but you get better over time.

Eventually, through meditation, both as an activity and as a side-activity along with other daily tasks. you’ll gain more understanding into how your body and mind works, giving you more awareness into your inner state, which then brings you the capability to be in tune with whatever happens at you, not reacting to it.

8. Journal

If you have an interest in writing, start journaling. Turn it into a habit. Write down at least 3 good things that happened to you in the day. How did you react? Next, write down at least 3 things that trigger something in you. How did you notice your reactions? Are you getting better each day at noticing the triggers?

Journaling is when you sit down and ask yourself questions you never normally ask. If you’re someone more into creative writing, that’s fine, too. Observe yourself when you write. See how the emotions and thoughts within you arose in each passing minutes. Be aware of your feelings. Detach from your thoughts and observe how ideas popped up, transformed, and expressed through you.

These are all amazing experiences that give a lot of insights into ourselves, which can become lessons for us to be more present in the Now.

Quotes Go With The Flow

1. “Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” – Lao Tzu

The natural world operates at its own pace and does not feel rushed or pressured to accomplish things quickly. In nature, everything happens in its own time and unfolds according to its own natural rhythms. Trees grow slowly, seasons change gradually, and rivers flow steadily towards the sea. Nature does not rush to achieve its goals, but rather moves forward in a steady and consistent manner.

We are a part of nature. Slow down, be patient, and trust that things will happen in their own time. It encourages us to embrace the natural flow of life and to not feel pressured to achieve our goals too quickly or on a set timeline. We may feel pressured by other people who may seem to “have it all” at a young age, but little do we know what lies behind all of those achievements.

Rest assured that we have our time. Just do what you want to do, but don’t rush. Good things take time.

2. “Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” – Lao Tzu

This is quite a well-known quote, and interestingly it is from Lao Tzu, the advocate of “going with the flow” approach. It’s like, to “go with the flow”, you should enter the flow first. Just start. Do whatever you want to do. Don’t have fear of failure. What will I do if I fail? What will be its consequences? It’s all our mind game . We have to push ourselves for new challenges

By tackling difficult tasks while they are still manageable, we can avoid procrastination and prevent problems from becoming even more challenging. Similarly, it is crucial to start working towards our goals and dreams when they are still small and achievable, instead of waiting until they seem too overwhelming to pursue.

As soon as you enter that flow state, you can start to enjoy the experience, “getting into the flow”, and understand what “going with the flow” truly means.

3. Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them – that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” – Lao Tzu

Life is a constant process of change, and that trying to resist or control these changes only creates pain and sorrow. Instead, Lao Tzu encourages us to accept the natural flow of life, to let things be as they are, and to allow them to unfold in their own time and in their own way.

4. “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” – Alan Watts

Alan Watts takes the quotes of Lao Tzu one step further. So…we accept that life is full of natural and spontaneous changes. Now what? Well, Alan Watts said “just plunge into it”. Join the dance. Change is happening, isn’t that amazing?

Change happens. Moving to a new country, starting a new career, a new relationship, or starting a family. These are all ranked as major changes. It’s confusing, sure. We have to figure out things we don’t even know we don’t know, and it’s terrifying to constantly be in the turbulence.

But you can change your mindset towards it.

Join that chaos. You’ll slowly learn the lessons you need to learn in that messy period, and once it’s over, you can look back and realize how much you how grown when you decide to join the dance.

5. “Go with the flow. Force nothing. Let it happen… trusting that whichever way it goes, it’s for the best.” – Mandy Hale

It can be strange to imagine that. But you know what they say: “Whatever will be, will be”. The future is not ours to see. Che sara, sara. Whatever will happen, will happen, no matter in which ways or circumstances.

There can be an element of fate involved. But, of course, “go with the flow” doesn’t mean to “stay the same”. Still carry on with your life, do whatever that makes you happy, design your life to be however you love it to, work on yourself and whatever you love. Trust that the right lessons will come to you at the right time, it’s up to you to develop the awareness to receive the lessons.

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