The Wisdom and Signs of Flow


by Judith Orloff, MD -

Flow is perfect attunement with a larger-than-self energy that helps us find balance in our lives. I view this energy as Spirit, compassionate and wise. Trusting the wisdom of flow means going with what’s presented to us as gracefully as possible, rather than flailing around in opposition—which creates a life out of balance. Our life’s flow propels us in certain directions. Of course, we do everything possible to create optimal outcomes, but we also must know when to ease off. The art is learning to go where the current takes you rather than maniacally mico-managing every detail of your existence.

Going with the flow safeguards your life force. Here’s a basic law of balancing energy: to realize your dreams, you must give them some breathing room. Do the footwork--but also stand back a little, let the universe work its magic. Paying attention to these signs about flow gives you a choice of behavior.

Intuitive signs you’re in balance with the flow:

* You’re happy or at least able to accept what is, without engaging in an unrelenting internal battle.

* You go after what you want, but back off if you’re pushing too hard--that tense, obsessive sense of being in overdrive.

* Your energy is high; you have an ease in relating with people and yourself. If conflicts arise, you breathe deeply, work towards resolution instead of getting rigid or retaliating.

* Hours pass, and you may not even notice. Kids get into a flow-consciousness when playing, artists when creating.

* You evaluate the timing of situations, rather than simply trying to break doors down.

* Flow can feel like coasting, a deeply spiritual state because you’re trusting the energy of the Now.
Intuitive signs you’re pushing against the flow
* There’s an energetic line you cross here between happiness and misery that you must recognize. It’s when you go beyond being healthily assertive to forcing the flow--a form of insanity in which you do something over and over again with the same negative results.

* The give-away is that your well-being suffers: you’re energy is frazzled, physical symptoms are aggravated, you’re impatient or desperate. A constant uphill battle can make you sick, instigate a cycle of frustration, blockages, and emotional pain.

* Giving the issue you’re fixated on a rest may feel intolerable or evoke tremendous anxiety.

* Typically, others are irritated by your pushing, and relationships linked with the desired outcome are strained.

* You deal with conflict by fighting it and clenching, instead of working toward the best possible compromise. In unavoidable, stressful situations you hate every minute of the “ordeal”--rather than flowing with it--and thus inflict suffering on yourself or others.

* Overall, going against the flow feels horrible, is a life force drain. It’s about fearfully clinging to self-will, and losing temporary touch with a compassionate intelligence, your Higher Power. This will help you find incredible balance in your life.


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