Going With The Flow

The Balance Of Being And Doing

Steer the boat each day rather than plan ahead way into the future


Going With The Flow -The Balance Of Being And Doing. Steer the boat each day rather than plan ahead way into the future. Image of a girl in a flowing blue dress on a sandy beach dancing.

bev janish

Going With The Flow By Embracing Uncertainty

Going with the flow is about learning to become comfortable with uncertainty, and learning how to exploit the potential hidden within it, both to feel better in the present and to achieve more success in the future.

Uncertainty is where things happen.

It is where the opportunities – for success, for happiness, for really living – are waiting.


The  2 foundations to embracing uncertainty are acceptance and flexibility.

As the psychologist Dorothy Rowe put it so elegantly:

"The only way to cope with all this uncertainty is to accept that it is so."

Professor Saras Sarasvathy, commenting on her findings in an indepth study of 45 successful entrepreneurs noted that the most valuable skill of a successful entrepreneur:

“...isn’t vision or passion or a steadfast insistence on destroying every barrier between yourself and some prize...."

Rather, it’s flexibility and the capacity to:

"Adopt an unconventional approach to learning: an improvisational flexibility not merely about which route to take towards some predetermined objective, but also a willingness to change the destination itself."


A practical business example of going with the flow.

A practical business example of going with the flow was the late, but largely now forgotten, businessman Henry Singleton. He was one of the most successful businessmen ever - and highly rated by Warren Buffet [amongst others]. He had a 25 year track record of 18% growth year on year for each of those years!

Commenting on goals and flexibility Singleton said:

“I know a lot of people have very strong and definite plans that they’ve worked out on all kinds of things, but we’re subject to a tremendous number of outside influences and the vast majority of them cannot be predicted.

So my idea is to stay flexible. My only plan is to keep coming to work. … I like to steer the boat each day rather than plan ahead way into the future."



    Steer the boat each day rather than plan ahead way into the future.








Going With The Flow By Doing Without Doing





The Taoist practise of Wu Wei is about "doing without doing" or living your life in alignment with the flow of life - quite literally going with the flow.

This becomes possible when we accept that:

“Everything in life has its own flow, its own pace and speed.

If we can tune into and align ourselves with it, we can achieve without undue exertion and enjoy effortless ease in all that we do. We find that we instinctively know what to do and when to do it.

This intelligence is the Tao at work within and around us. Relax into this flow and allow the Tao to direct your life.” [The Unbroken Self].

What Wu Wei means in practice

Doing without doing:

  • Does not mean not taking action.
  • Is about how you take action.
  • Means being at peace whilst taking action - so you can perform with maximum skill and efficiency.
  • Describes a state of total immersion and profound concentration on what you are doing - being "in the zone".
  • Requires you to have achieved conscious competence in exercising the necessary skills to unconsciously undertake the required tasks and activities. i.e. to "work on auto-pilot".







This belief causes us to create in reverse

We are brought up to believe that we get what we want in life as a result of what we do, by the actions that we take.

But we do not understand the power of our energy. As a result of this we so often end up "chasing our tails" to make up for the impacts of our unintentional negative energy.

Most of our actions are out of fear, worry or doubt

The issue that we all face is that we are obsessed with doing, and that inevitably involves some form of struggle.

Those of us from a western influenced background are culturally conditioned to an action orientation, and thus we automatically place a great value on activity.

Unfortunately, what we don't understand is that we are creating in a “reverse” fashion.




    We truly believe that nothing will happen unless we do something.

    Thus, rather than going with the flow, we end up attempting to force our intentions and desires into manifestation by our actions.








Going With The Flow By Balancing Your Action And Your Energetic State



It is not your action alone that makes things happen, it is also your energy state

It took me countless years to understand this dynamic of going with the flow! Years and years of working so hard, striving so hard… always pushing, pushing… yet the harder I pushed the further away seemed to be the results that I sought.

Eventually I came to understand that I needed to reduce my actions and increase my focus on managing my energetic state until I could feel the positive energy beginning to move within me. In contrast to my repeated efforts over so many years, this was not an energy based on doubt, fear, anxiety, worry or need. I learned to apply the following truth:

If you focus on the energy - the feeling - of what you do want instead of what you don't want, you will know when it is time to take action, and what action to take. This is the balance of being and doing

And when you do, it will be effortless. Doors open and it will seem as if the entire universe is on your side.

I once described a personal experience of this as like having a big red carpet unrolling in front of me and all I had to do was keep moving fast enough to keep up with it!

What I have learned the hard way over many, many years, and without doubt or reservation, is that we need to use the leverage of energy - the same energy that creates everything in the universe – The Energy Of Life.

You may have noticed that some people seem to lead a “charmed life” or have “the Midas touch”. It can appear as though they have an advantage over everyone else.

At the other end of the spectrum there are so many people who strive so hard and yet achieve so little for all their effort. This may not seem fair but in all of my lived and observed experience of life that really does seem to be how The Energy Of Life works.

That doesn't seem fair does it? But all the evidence seems to suggest to me that's the way the universe works.

We are culturally conditioned and brought up to believe that there is “no gain without pain” and whilst there is a truth in that, it is not the whole picture.

What matters is the energetic state applied to all that effort.


Actions are necessary, but they aren't the only component of the creation process

Actions alone cannot be used effectively to initiate results, because initiation is the function of your inner energetic state of being, then follows the thought, and then the action.

So the creation of anything we apply ourselves to is first through our energetic state and secondly the accompanying action.

We live in an energetic universe held together in The Energy Of Life and it is by the exercising and management of our energetic state, by going with the flow, that we harmonise and attract experiences to ourselves.

So before you act or do anything, check in with yourself, and ask: “what is my energy state?”

What is the simplest way to tell? You can tell by how you feel. Your feelings show you your vibration/energy state.


How you feel - your energetic state - determines what you attract, and the accompanying action seals the deal

When you do it this way you will find that The Energy Of Life will provide you with a different set of circumstances for you that requires much less action.








    How to achieve the balance of doing and being?

    Do Be Do Be Do.










Further Reading: Trying Too Hard

Next Article: The Stockdale Paradox - How To Deal With The Attrition Factor

Return from "Going With The Flow" to: Walking The Talk

Or to: Renewing Your Mind




English Chinese (Traditional) Russian French German Italian Spanish Vietnamese


LATEST ARTICLES

  1. The Challenges Of The Road Less Traveled

    Issues You'll Face When Playing The Long Game. The challenges of the road less traveled is loosely based around the phrase popularised by M.Scott Peck with his book "The Road Less Traveled". This arti…

    Read More

  2. How To Benefit From the Unseen Margins - 5 Key Tips For Success

    These Unseen Margins Can Have A Very Dramatic Impact On Your Life. To understand how to benefit from the unseen margins we need to start by understanding what they are and where we find them. In this…

    Read More

  3. The Art Of Thinking Clearly - How To Do More Than Just Survive And Reproduce

    3 Key Tips The art of thinking clearly starts with the sobering realisation that our brains are designed to achieve two things: Survival and Reproduction! 98% of our thinking is unconscious, automatic…

    Read More

  4. Algorithms to Live By - 5 Useful Rules Of Thumb

    5 Useful Heuristics From Algorithms To Live By The thesis of the book "Algorithms to Live By" is that algorithms developed for computers can be used by people in everyday life in a wide range of situa…

    Read More

  5. Finding Signal In The Noise - How To Avoid The Noise Bottleneck

    The Art Of Being Wise Is The Art Of Knowing What To Overlook. We are blessed and cursed to live in the digital age. We have access to more information than we can possibly handle yet we struggle to fi…

    Read More

  6. The Checklist Manifesto - Your Personal Safety Net

    A Checklist Is A Safety Net That Encourages Better Results And Prevents Avoidable Mistakes. The volume and complexity of what we know has exceeded our individual ability to deliver its benefits correc…

    Read More

  7. How Not To Be Stupid - 4 Key Tips

    How To Avoid The 7 Causes Of Everyday Stupidity. We are all capable of everyday stupidity as we undertake routine tasks in our business and working lives and also in our personal lives. This is not ab…

    Read More

  8. Beginners Mind And The Voice Of Experience

    Only The Experts Survived Evolution. "In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert's there are few." These are the famous words of Shunryu Suzuki in "Zen Mind, Beginner's Min…

    Read More

  9. The Art Of Being Alone Is A Skill

    Let's Make Today A Good Day. You may not have chosen the condition of being alone, and it may have been imposed upon you by circumstances beyond your control, but your response to the situation is wit…

    Read More

  10. Intuition & Anxiety - Are There Angels Or Devils Calling Here?

    How To Tell The Difference Between Intuition and Anxiety. How do you know whether the voice of your intuition is real or just the product of your inner anxiety? We all struggle with these inner voices…

    Read More

  11. Like A Prayer - Life Is A Mystery

    It Isn't The Process Of Prayer That’s The Problem, It’s The Way It’s Framed. Regardless of what we feel about Madonna or her song the topic of prayer often arouses strong reactions. Usually, it is som…

    Read More

  12. Fear Of Missing Out - "I'll Have What She's Having!"

    We Follow The Herd - We Mimic Other People's Choices. Fear of missing out - or FOMO as it is popularly referred to - is the feeling that everyone else in your peer group is having much more fun than y…

    Read More

  13. Free - Self Improvement Resources

    Exercising Balance and Discernment. I have just updated these self improvement resources with a number of additional sources of material that are practical and can help you change your life. Check it…

    Read More

  14. Your Higher Self - Your Hardwired Portal To The Universe

    This Is The You That Is Beyond Your Thinking Mind. This is the big you, the transcendent you, the you that is often referred to as your higher consciousness or higher self. This is the you that acts a…

    Read More

  15. The Power Of Gratitude - It's Good For You!

    Gratitude And Attitude Are Not Challenges, They Are Choices. The power of gratitude quite simply is that it is good for you! Many of us were raised by parents who instilled in us the social niceties o…

    Read More

  16. Living With Your Thoughts - 4 Tools To Help You

    Develop A Good Working Relationship With Your Mind. The first step in living with your thoughts is to understand and develop a good working relationship with all areas of your mind. The key to develop…

    Read More

  17. You Are Not Your Thoughts - How To Escape This Ferris Wheel Of Suffering

    The 4 Stages To Dealing With Your Thoughts. You are not your thoughts, at least that's what your rational mind tells you most of the time, but that's definitely not how it feels at 3 am when you have…

    Read More

  18. Finish What You Start - Action Will Destroy Your Procrastination

    4 Key Tips To Help You Finish What You Start. So why do you fail to finish what you start? Or in my case, why do I fail to even get started? There is a wealth of information out there about how to avo…

    Read More

  19. Going The Extra Mile - The Power Of One More

    Life Is Non-Linear, Which Makes The Rewards Of Continued Effort Disproportionately Big. In the pursuit of a long term goal you have to go countless extra miles to set yourself up for a big success. Go…

    Read More

  20. Tao Te Ching - Connecting To Your True Source Of Power.

    How To Be Lived By The Tao. The Tao Te Ching is one of those books that many people read, few understand, and even fewer put into practice. The only way to know the Tao is to experience it, and it is…

    Read More

  21. Dying To Self & Dropping The Ego

    Everything Does Not Revolve Around Me. The two phrases dying to self & dropping the ego are Christian and Buddhist expressions of the same fundamental truth - the need to correct the inbuilt, hardwire…

    Read More

  22. The Confident Mind - 4 Keys To Peak Performance

    Peak Performance Is Meditation In Motion. Peak performance is grounded in the Tao practise of Wu Wei which means "doing with out doing". This is all about how you take action by being so immersed in p…

    Read More

  23. Going With The Flow - The Balance Of Being And Doing

    Steer The Boat Each Day Rather Than Plan Ahead Way Into The Future. Going with the flow is about learning to become comfortable with uncertainty, and learning how to exploit the potential hidden withi…

    Read More

  24. 8 Principles For Success

    A Timeless Foundation On Which To Build Your Success. There are Universal laws and processes that work to support us and guarantee that we achieve all our goals. But first we need to know what they ar…

    Read More

  25. The Loving Father

    A Love That Will Not Let You Go. I had a loving father. I knew that I did, but I never felt it. My father was a good man but very damaged and unable to show his feelings. So I grew up knowing in my he…

    Read More

  26. Your Ebenezer Stone Of Help

    How To Stay Connected To Your True Source Of Power. Approximately 2,500 years ago the Israeli town of Kafr Qasim was close to the site of two battles between the ancient Israelis and their neighbours…

    Read More

  27. The Stockdale Paradox

    How To Deal With The Attrition Factor. The Stockdale Paradox is named after the late James Stockdale, former vice presidential candidate, naval commander and prisoner of war during the American-Vietna…

    Read More

  28. Embrace Your Fear Of Failure And Uncertainty

    We Celebrate Success And Ignore Failure. Numerous studies have been undertaken on successful people to understand what it was that they did to become so successful, how they did it and when they did i…

    Read More

  29. The Wilderness Years - 3 Keys To An Exit

    How You Got Into The Wilderness Matters Less Than The Lessons To Be Learnt There. The wilderness years can be described as any lengthy time, longer than a year, that is spend aimlessly; without an imm…

    Read More

  30. Boredom – Your Greatest Threat to Results

    We Live In A World That Glorifies The Results And Not The Process. We all know what we should be doing, but the trouble with that is that sooner of later we get bored. The enjoyment fades, the excitem…

    Read More



Get new posts by email:









Zen-Tools.Net





Support This Site