Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Go with the flow

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Those who know me really well, know that I have, sometimes, the tendency to be a bit of a perfectionist. I'm searching for the perfect place for everything and tend to make schedules and lists and plans in a great deal of detail. It's gotten more balanced over the last few years and I'm mostly happy with my level of need to have everything as (I think) it should be. 

Photo by Hamed Saber
This week, I've had a few opportunities to try my hand at going with the flow and not being so anal. My favourite and the simplest is the shirt with the tea(?) stains on the front that I didn't want to throw out. The shirt was so pretty, but I just couldn't get the stains out, so, in the spirit of "If you can't beat em join em", I decided to dunk the whole thing in tea for a dye. The instructions I found here worked wonderfully, but since the shirt was pink to begin with, it came out looking dirty. Not to be discouraged, I tried my hand with some of the harder stuff and dyed it a deep blue- beautiful. New skill, new shirt.

While it's hardly life changing and it was a fun experiement for me, it reminded me of a few simple things about control. You can plan and plan, but things don't always go as you expect. Sometimes there's a broken dish to your favourite set, an injury causes a change in plans, or sometimes the university gets closed and you have a beautiful day off to spend with family. Either way, there are surprises and they can be immediately apparently awesome, or not that fun. 

Photo by swimparallel
I don't think that I believe in  fate, but I do believe in perception, and choosing our next move. It's not always obvious, it's not always easy, that unforeseen path doesn't always seem as wonderful as the one we laid out, but it's part of life, an unseen adventure and, sometimes it's even better.

The desire for control is not a bad thing. A plan or wish is still useful, it, along with your actions, can help prepare you for surprises, and in general, move you forward. We have things we want and I think it's important to know what the most crucial aspects of our wishes are. Under the new situation (a compromise, an attempt to chill-out, a new circumstance, a potential opportunity), what do we want most? Can we have that? Is there something deeper to that desire that we can have in another way?

As one of my SMART goals I made at the beginning of the year, I included running. With that off the list for now, I have to remember that the original goal was to improve my overall (but particularly cardiovascular) fitness. In a sense I fell off the wagon I designed, but, keeping the root goal in mind, I can come up with another way. The setback gives me an opportunity to think about low impact exercises, being fashionable wearing comfortable running shoes, and, since walking's not always so kind to me, to think outside of my usual zone for fun activities.

Photo by pennuja
To keep things light, I like to say of those surprised that they might be like getting kicked out of a window and landing in a pile of chocolate- it could go a lot of ways depending on your perception and your next move. There's also making lemonade with those lemons. Either way, whatever we do, we've got to go with the flow, just know that we don't want to drown. That said, as I continue to wait on my feet to heal, I think I'll take that running time to the pool at the Y and improve my swimming skills. :P


Have there been any surprises in your life that have made it better than you thought or brought you to a new place? How do you deal with those quick little turns? Have any great sayings on the subject? Feel free to share and, if you like what you read, remember to share, subscribe, or follow me on Twitter or Pinterest.




Hope your day is full of happy surprises and revelations.
Live well, Charlotte

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