I was thinking today about how life is like surfing. Before you paddle out, there is a lot of debate about whether you should even go out. I’ve been married to a surfer for 30 years and with him for 34, so there have been many occasions I’ve been with him as he headed to the beach. Usually we’d have to check a lot of different spots to see if conditions were right, which made no sense to me because all waves looked the same to me, but apparently wind conditions, size, and other mystery variables play into the decision. Just like life, before you make a big change, often there is a lot of internal debate about whether you are making the right move. Are the conditions right to paddle out? Will you fail if you try? Are the waves (risks) to big?
Then you decide to put your board in the water and paddle out. Sometimes conditions are great, the temperature is perfect, the waves are lining up and no one is out in the water. It’s bliss as you catch wave after wave until that last wave you ride right up to the beach. Other times it’s a struggle just to get out as set after set comes in and you are duck diving and duck diving just scratching to get out to the lineup. You are tired, and you haven’t even caught your first wave. If it’s big surf conditions and churning, you can wipe out hard and get held under until you think this is it, you’re out of air and the force of the water has you pinned on the ocean floor. Somehow you manage to break the surface gasping and thankful you survived. Life can be like that. You have these great ideas and it’s a struggle to launch. You take off with your idea, or new job or new project and get slammed before you even get started. Sometimes you catch the wave but wipe out. Sometimes you make the connection with the right person or opportunity and enjoy the perfect ride (which would be like pulling into the barrel and getting tubed, coming unscathed out the other side). None of it would have been possible if you didn’t throw your board in the water and start paddling.
Life doesn’t come with a money back guarantee. Life comes with tools. You have all the tools necessary to succeed. We are all given the tools we need to be successful at what we were born to do. All of our tool boxes look different because they are individually tailored to compliment our gifts. For example, I am not a strong swimmer. I’m a great floater. I can enjoy the water as long as I’m on something like a boat, a kayak, a surfboard or canoe. I am like a rock if left on my own without a flotation device, drowning is a distinct possibility. I am however great at easing someone’s emotional suffering, moving people through life blocks, giving unconditional love to whomever crosses my path. My tool box looks like empathy, compassion, love, the ability to know when someone is in distress and how to help them. If I were judged by how well I could swim, I would get straight fails across the board. If I’m judged on how well I coach or raise the energy of people through Marconics energy work, I would get great marks on my report card. I wonder how many of you are paddling out in the wrong spot at the wrong beach and focusing on the wrong skill set. How many of you are out of alignment with your truth, your passion, your life purpose? A good indication of this would be the feeling of swimming upstream or getting pounded by life.
Making a life change can be hard. You check and recheck conditions, talk yourself out of rocking the boat or dipping a toe in the water. You know you are unhappy, but it seems safer to remain stuck than paddle out. It’s a big world out there and the thought of failing is terrifying. The thought of being judged is paralyzing. The thought of having your worst fears around failure come true and validate the story of not being enough, or not being successful can stop anyone in their tracks. It is important to know, you are perfect at being YOU. There is no one on the planet who can be a better version of you than you! It is time to take stock of what your skills are. What brings you joy? How can you incorporate that into your every day life? Contrary to popular belief, some of us are born to make people laugh, or bake pies, or babysit, or play the piano or sing opera. Some of us are born to be janitors and bus drivers or any of a million other things I can’t even imagine. The key is to find what aligns with your soul. Take risks. Spark joy. Get in the water! If you can’t allow your heart to sing, then you are living in a prison of your own design. You are checking the surf at every beach waiting for the perfect conditions which don’t exist. You are watching people live their best life while you sit on the sidelines lamenting all the reasons why you can’t. The only thing standing between you and your greatness is the bullshit story you have told yourself about your value and worthiness and the time has come to delete that old program. It’s time to update the software and allow the truth to be revealed. Take risks, get in the water, even if it’s just to paddle out and float around. Don’t even catch a wave, just get on your board and paddle out. Any forward movement is progress. Take a class, research on the internet, change your diet, change your mind! Anything is possible, there are miracles happening every day! One thing is for sure, staying on dry land, never taking a risk will keep you exactly in the same spot you have been in for the last 10, 20, 30 years. Maybe this is the year to paddle out.