Surfing is an definitely an experience that goes way beyond padding and popping up on a board. It can be a beautiful metaphor and analogy for life itself. I have had so many inspirational moments of learning and growth in the ocean and I have learned how to apply them to all areas of my life. Surfing can truly be a tool to empower your life! A mentor of mine once said to me “HOW YOU DO ONE THING IS HOW YOU DO EVERYTHING” So true. How we react and handle certain situations can tell us a lot about how we cope in similar situations in life.
The intention OF this article is to be able to share my experiences and insights with others of how surfing has helped empower me and molded my character for their benefit and inspiration.
What can Surfing and the Ocean teach us? Ahhhh many things indeed! There is much more than this below but here are some of the main qualities that I have refined within myself by being in the water…
How do you face challenge? Head on or do you cower and contract? Whether its maintaining the endurance for paddling or balancing yourself on the board, surfing can pose many challenges. When I surf there is always some challenge to overcome whether big or small. Seeing challenge as an opportunity rather than a difficulty has been huge for me. How I choose to react to challenge is more than half of the solution to overcoming and breaking through it.
When the waves are bigger and I am getting pounded or slammed underwater it can certainly be a little nerve wracking at times! Learning to surrender under water while this is happening and relax has enabled me to TRAIN MY MIND AND BODY to do the same when the “WAVES OF LIFE” throw me down.
Fear is really “False Evidence Appearing Real”. There is an old saying “THERE IS NOTHING TO FEAR BUT FEAR ITSELF” Ha ha very true! Fear can serve by protecting us in the moment but when we take that into other situations in life it doesn’t help. Through surfing I have learned to face my fears by accepting that they will be there from time to time and rather than contracting myself when they come up I choose to now “LEAN INTO” them. As I do this using my breath as a tool my threshold of where the fear begins has become greater. And Fear is really excitement without breath. Choosing to view my fear this way has really helped me see it as an opportunity for growth and expansion.
How can we be “IN THE FLOW” in life? I believe an aspect of “flow” is about being a part of something larger than ourselves (in this case the ocean) and fine tuning our awareness enough to be able to intuit its flow and merge with it so to speak. When we do this we can surrender and allow the waves to do the work for us. Intuiting my own flow through surfing has also been about finding the balance between doing (paddling) and being/receiving (allowing the waves to take me). When I discover this delicate balance in my life I have noticed how things become so much easier and move with more EASE and GRACE. We all have to take action of course. But knowing when to let go has been my challenge. I have learned to trust that life can take me exactly where I need to go when I learn how to tune into my own personal “flow”
Present Moment Awareness:
We all have had the experience of being “IN THE ZONE” doing something we love and/or something we are very good at. We lose our sense of time as we become very present and immersed in the experience. This is a state of “NO MIND” so many of the spiritual gurus and coaches talk about. The opportunity to experience this again and again is available to us when we surf as there is always another wave coming. So, there are just as many opportunities as there are waves. And every new wave provides that new fresh moment. That unique newness. That fresh perspective if you choose it.
As you can now see, surfing is certainly a beautiful experience that has enabled me to become more empowered in many aspects of my life. That same power is certainly within you my friends. I just use Surfing and the ocean as a catalyst and mirror for myself and others for that power to be accessed and for that transformation to occur.
Surfing is invaluable! Would you like an opportunity to allow more growth and expansion into your life while having fun playing in the ocean at the same time! What else is possible for you? Say YES!