I came to downhill skiing later in life than most, in my early twenties. My ex-husband and his family were avid ski enthusiasts so it was join ’em or spend every weekend and winter holiday alone. I love the outdoors so I was up for the challenge.
The first few times I ventured onto the ski hill, I was definitely intimidated. In order to get any speed down the hill, one has to face down hill. Yet the more I would face down the hill, the more out of control I would feel. In order to create some modicum of control, my ex taught me to traverse across the slope and then hop to turn around to head the other way, which should have worked except for one thing. I was struggling to control my speed and in order to maintain any control, I was fighting the slope of the hill by over hopping and actually almost face up the hill! It was quite amusing to watch. This was extremely effective in keeping me from going out of control but it was also extremely exhausting. By the end of the run I would literally be panting.
Did you notice how many times I used the word control in that paragraph? And what does that have to do with possibility?
I felt like I was missing something. That had to be an easier way. So I started to experiment. What I discovered was quite simple and ended up being a phenomenal metaphor for living. I found that if I leaned into the slope of the hill and allowed gravity to move my body, rather than fighting the slope by hopping up hill, I could actually have more ease in my body, have a sense of flow and find a rhythm. The more I surrendered to that rhythm, the easier the skiing became and the irony is, the more control I had over my skis. It was fascinating because it was opposite to what I had anticipated. It was actually by letting go that I could find my rhythm and enjoy skiing.
I took this metaphor out into my life, whereby letting go of control allowed the arena of possibility to flood in. It has been a super fun learning to apply and I still do, every day.
So I put this question now to you….where does more effort in your life stifle possibility, create exhaustion rather than be open to possibility ? And I wonder where letting go might actually create more than you could ever imagine?