Have you every had someone tell you to go with the flow? That flow isn’t your flow. When someone wants you to “go with the flow” they want you to go with their flow, or their social group’s flow, or society’s flow. Today I want to talk about your flow.
Many things in life have a flow. Water flows, air currents flow, we flow through time. Things within our life need to flow. Without flow we get blockage and things come to a standstill. Dam up a river, and the water stops flowing, becoming stagnant.
Life has it’s own flow. You move from place to place, learning, growing, moving through life. Within that movement is energy. Some call this energy Chi or Qi. It doesn’t really matter what you call it though, the important thing is that you recognize the areas where your life flows and where there are blockages.
Consider your home. You don’t need to be a Feng Shui expert to understand the blockage caused by clutter. I’m sure you feel it as soon as you walk in the door. Our possessions are part of the flow. You bring new stuff in, old stuff must go out. When the old stuff doesn’t go, but instead remains, you end up with a blockage. You have interrupted the flow of physical possessions. You end up with a home that resembles a stagnant pond, rather than that of a clean and refreshing river.
Consider your money. I recall an episode of Sponge Bob Square Pants, where Mr. Krabs wished that his money could talk, and that wish was granted. (For those of you that aren’t well versed in Sponge Bob, Mr. Krabs is obsessed with money and he hates to spend it.) At first he liked hearing his money talk, but soon the money kept crying to be spent. The purpose of money is to spend it. When you get so obsessed with money that you never spend any of it, it creates a blockage. Money must flow. It flows in, in the form of paychecks, gifts, etc., and it flows out in the form of buying goods and services.
Consider your flow through time and space. Are you growing, learning, or doing new things? I go through periods of growth and change followed by periods of rest. If I rest too long, however, I grow stagnant. That happened to me in my house. I stopped growing, stopped changing and found myself just floating along in my stagnant life. My life stopped flowing and I had to do something to start it again.
This idea of flow can help you. It can serve as a reminder to get up and get moving.
In your home, look for blockages. Look for spots that are filled with clutter, areas where you feel frustration when your around them. (I have a spot like that in my closet, we’ll be talking about that in a future post.) Then take action. Break off a small chunk and make some progress. Donate, sell, or trash a couple things to start the flow again. It doesn’t take much to create flow. Take one object and get it out of your house. That can be enough to start. Then the next day take another object or maybe two, and send them on their way. Chip away some small pieces of a dam and the water will quickly erode the dam and reestablish the flow. Do this with your clutter and you will quickly regain the motivation to continue.
With your money, don’t worry about those small setbacks. Your car breaks down, you have a sudden medical expense, or some other unexpected expense crops up… that’s just part of the flow. Money flows it, money flows out. It’s ok for money to flow out sometimes, it’s all part of the flow. As long as you have your finances in order, and you are living within your means, the money will flow in again. If too much flows out, then you may need to make some changes to create more inflow than outflow.
Determine if you have good flow in your life. When you are moving in the right direction, you will see that life begins to flow. When we decided to sell our house to downsize, our life started flowing again. Our house sold in a down economy, it happened over the holidays when I had time off from work, we found an apartment in a week, and had time to pack and complete our decluttering. Everything started flowing and things started falling in place. Every time we made decisions that were right for us, life started to flow and good things happened. Even though the decisions we made weren’t what other people told us we should do, and even when they weren’t what society deemed normal, life flowed if we did what was right for us.
It takes some bravery to do what is right for you, even when everyone around you is telling you to do something different. You can do it, everyone has it within them to get into the flow.
Have you had times in life where you are in the flow? Are you in the flow now, or do you feel stuck? Share your stories in the comment section.
Photo credit: https://flic.kr/p/8zuSaA