When you step into quicksand and you find yourself sinking, the answer isn’t to flail your arms and legs, or to move faster, and make yourself bigger. Instead, reach your arms above your head and become very still, making very slow and deliberate movements until you find something to grab onto. In stillness your sinking will slow and your opportunity to save yourself is greater.
Recently I interviewed my brother Roy Ellis, Grief Counsellor, Therapist, Spiritual Caregiver and Writer in The Uncommon Woman community about the power of grief. In our conversation he used the analogy of quick sand and how it relates to our relationship with grief.
Often people feel like they are fighting their way through their grief, sinking deeper and deeper into it, often feeling like they are stuck in it, which is both exhausting and frantic. When you become still in your grief the sinking slows which gives you time to think and just BE with your thoughts. And within the thinking there is a certain level of acceptance or pause – permission to feel and be present.
This is so often the portal to the answers we are “searching” for.
When we find ourselves scrambling for an opening in our lives that resembles peace and clarity, the thing we actually need to do is be still.
As strange as it may sound, grief is a human experience, and like all the other human experiences it has ebbs and flows. Grief itself and the act of grieving have an impact on our lives just like changing careers, adopting a pet, or leaving a relationship will have. We can find ourselves caught up in the frantic energy of “why is this happening,” or “this isn’t what I signed up for,” and before we know it we find ourselves in the spin cycle where everything is blurry and moving too fast.
In these moments we often find ourselves saying things like “I wish it would STOP,” or “I just need a moment to catch my breath.”
The act of stopping and catching our breath is called “stillness.” Of course, in our society when we become “still” and step back, others worry and express concern about our mental health or our success when in fact it’s the very thing that our mental health ad success require of us.
Whether in managing our grief, managing our relationships, or managing our business we will find the answers to what it is we need next by getting still and ‘DOing’ nothing.”
The act of DOing is overrated. More often than not our society tells us to go get another book, attend another conference, join another Mastermind, or attend another group when we are searching for answers.
Answers aren’t sought out. They find us when we ask the right questions in our stillness. Even when the answers come to us in the moments at an event or while listening to a podcast or reading a book, we are open, still, attentive, and listening in with an specific question on our hearts.
When we stop chasing the answers and instead find stillness in our curiosity, the answers will have the opportunity to land, in time and when we need them to.
“True intelligence operates silently. Stillness is where creativity and solutions to problems are found.” Eckhart Tolle
I wish for you the clarity and peace that is found in stillness.
Founder, The Uncommon Woman
Go here to listen to the conversation with Roy Ellis.