In our achievement-obsessed, goal-oriented culture, the idea of flailing around - or worse, failing - probably puts a knot in your stomach. I mean, who wants to look like they have no idea what they're doing?
The thing is, the mess of life is also where the magic is. Think about it - if you constantly went from A to B to Z, without any struggle or conflict, life would get really boring, really fast. You also wouldn't learn much. Oftentimes, at the end of a journey or a big achievement, we look back and think, whoa, that [struggle/breakdown/challenge] taught me a lot! I'm even grateful that all of that happened, because now I sure am [stronger/wiser/funnier/more confident].
Going after anything remotely outside of your comfort zone means that there's a potential that you'll flail around - a lot. When I first started my business, I thought I knew what I was doing, and that it would be profitable within six months. In truth, it took me years. And in those years I flailed, a lot. I also learned a lot more about myself, my mission, and what exactly I'm on this planet to do if I hadn't struggled.
When we can loosen our grip on what we think "should" be happening and get present to what is happening, even if it's uncomfortable, cool stuff happens that wasn't there before. We allow the Universe to come in and create outcomes that we never could have imagined with our perfectly crafted 10-step plans. It may not look how you thought it would look, but I can bet that it will probably be better.
Most of us are afraid of flailing, because we equate it with failing. If you're strugging, it must be because you can't hack it, right? But if you can embrace the struggle, stop judging it, get quiet, and see what it's trying to teach you, you will come out better, stronger, wiser, and more resilient than if you had had it easy the whole time. If you can do that, then it's impossible to fail.
Five benefits of flailing around:
1. It makes you more resilient. Being able to look a problem or challenge in the face, with absolute faith in yourself that you can create a solution, is one of the most crucial skills in today's volatile world. Your mindset is your most valuable asset. And of course, you can't solve problems if there are no problems to solve, right?
2. It makes you wiser. There is wisdom in this world that only comes through experience. In coaching we call it embodiment - it's one thing to read about a concept, it's another to live through it and integrate that experience in your being. This is where true wisdom lives.
3. It gives you some perspective. When I first started my business, every challenge was the end of the world. Now, I know that nothing is the end of the world, that the sun will always rise again tomorrow, and that this too shall pass. This kind of long-game perspective is critical for success in anything.
4. It makes you a better human. Let's be real, no one likes the person who acts like they've never struggled right? Being able to speak to your challenges with empathy and humor makes you more relatable, more approachable, and more real. And that's a person other people want to work with.
5. It helps you not take life for granted. If there's never any contrast, how are you supposed to know when the good times are? Having spent some time flailing around helps you recognize and appreciate when things are going well. And gratitude, as we know, is the key to happiness.
When have you flailed around? What did you learn? Come on over to Magic Circle and let me know - I'd love to hear!