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Push Hard or Let It Flow?

I don’t like the hustle culture, it makes me anxious and exhausted. Constant pushing and striving for more without true rest. Self-care comes with feelings of guilt, often coupled with multitasking, technology attachments and never-ending thoughts. Our minds and bodies need rest. Time to not be in a state of go-go-go and instead embrace a chill-chill-chill approach.

Here is my conundrum. Shouldn't I be pushing hard? After all, I have personal and professional goals I want to accomplish, and I feel confident they are aligned with my why. Maybe you can relate with your own goals centered around your career, relationships, finances, well-being, etc. And being uncertain around what to do next.

How do we know when to keep pushing hard and when to surrender? It is always a choice - put in the effort or let go and see what unravels. I don’t mean giving up. I’m talking about doing the work around your goals. Being intentional and committed but then things just don't seem to happen. Rather than pushing so hard and feeling stressed out or beating yourself up because it isn't working out perfectly, you let go a little and let what is meant to unfold.

I believe there is a natural rhythm to life. On my yoga mat, I sometimes push to do certain poses. My body physically grips, knots form and my breath shallows. When I let go a little and surrender, the practice begins to flow. I’ve experienced this in relationships, jobs, health, making plans and more. Thinking I can control things or they will never change, and then guess what - they do! The universe may have other plans. Life doesn’t always happen exactly how we want it to, no matter how hard we try.

To me, the message can be simple. I listen to the wisdom of my body and not my mind, which likes to overcomplicate things. I ask myself the really honest questions and listen to what is deep inside me. Call it intuition, gut feelings, instincts, a sixth sense - whatever resonates with you. When I practice this, I often feel the answers in my gut, shoulders or hands. My body will either feel tense or at ease. Sometimes the answer is, "Amy, you need to work a little harder. You are playing it safe. Don’t live in the fear zone, you got this!" Or my body knows before my mind that something doesn’t feel right, and I either need some space to pause or make a change.

Ask yourself the big questions. Trust yourself to listen.

- Are you feeling true exhaustion, or are you just discouraged?

- Are you holding yourself back because of judgment from others?

- Where is your confidence? We gain confidence from being courageous!

- Is the thing you are pushing towards a true desire?

Remember your why. Know what is important to you and the reason you started. This is the deep work, to be done without personal judgment. Be honest with yourself and intentional with your next steps forward. It may be to push, or it may be to let it flow. I am all about being bold and brave and working hard. But there is a point when things aren’t clicking, and it's time to switch directions. Not to lose sight of your true goals, but rather to change what you have been doing.

Life has a way of never working out exactly how we planned. I’ve found it usually works out better. With time, faith…and a lot of patience! It is a beautiful journey and still can be frustrating. Please know if you are feeling this way, you are not alone. Sit quietly and take a few deep breaths to center yourself. When we quiet our minds, our bodies will tell us. Deep in your gut is the truth you seek. Start here, just being still. You know the questions, it is time to listen to the answers.

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