Do you ever feel the harder you try to make something happen the further away it seems to become? And then when you finally stop putting so much of your energy into forcing its existence to reality it all of a sudden appears right before you?
Multiple experiences like this have forced me into practicing the art of surrender this year. Now where it might feel a little confusing is we often tend to confuse surrender with quitting or defeat or even failure and here I must add none of those things are bad either because all those mean were you weren't afraid to take the risk in the first place.
Where surrender differs is that thing that we want to achieve or receive still rents a room in our heads but it's no longer living there rent free with no contributions. For me on this journey, surrender has been about really forcing myself into the present moment and realising that there is abundance and miracles all around us everyday. In fact even breathing is a miracle.
When I came into the start of this year I was working a part time job as well as doing all of my own work. I had taken on the part time work because I was struggling to make ends meet with solely self employment but also I was so disconnected from what I was actually trying to put out in the world. On my first day back after Christmas in January I was low-key fired? Essentially, just told I wasn't really needed anymore with no notice and also no more pay. As you can imagine right after the Christmas & New years celebrations my first reaction was slight panic especially as I had also just smashed my car windscreen with my surfboard and discovered on the same day the insurance wouldn't cover it, but my second reaction was almost sort of a relief and that was the first time this year I noticed myself practicing the art of surrendering. I thought to myself ok this is it now you have to make it work for yourself because I really struggle working for anyone else because I am so passionate about what I want to put out in the world that unless it is in line with that I lose interest very quickly.
I was also going through shattering heartbreak at the time and the only way I felt like myself was through my work. So I put my absolute everything into it, I was constantly creating content, working with a business mentor, working with a new manufacturer, starting up the Soul Vibrations events and more and it was amazing to feel the rewards and be able to support myself AND treat myself working for myself this year. However it got to July and I realised I was experiencing extreme burnout but what was worse was due to the horrific delays I have faced this year with the new manufacturer mean we haven't actually put out a new drop this year yet. So I was facing burnout as well as feeling though all control I had over this thing I'd worked so hard on and care about so much was just slipping through my fingers. This combined with some personal things in July lead to some of my lowest days I've had in quite some time if I am honest.
I was at All Together Now festival in August when I had the realisation that my desperate desire to constantly be in control was probably what was causing most of my issues. On the Saturday night, I was standing watching Jamie XX, there was these crazy visuals on the screen and probably thousands of people surrounding me but in a sort of beautiful rather than lonely way I felt like I was the only person there and it was then that it sort of just hit me that I needed to simply just surrender to what was out of my control. That being things like peoples opinions of me or allowing the issues with one manufacturer ruin my entire business.
Don't get me wrong it wasn't all smooth sailing - I surrendered while also still trying to be persistent with all things business and did our Urbran Outfitters pop up with all old stock silently crying inside while having to smile on the outside. But about a week after coming home from All together Now I came across an email from about a week before about trialling a new platform to help me with finding new manufacturers within Europe and thought at this point what have I got to lose and now I can honestly say it has been that which probably saved my driving force to even keep running the business.
I had a fear at the time that it was madness to start working with a new manufacturer because we had no drop and very little cash flow to work on a new one without either getting it or getting refunded but something in my body just said to go with it and make it work some how. Almost 3 months later I am preparing to launch the pieces from that drop as well as working on new samples for Summer 24. It scares me to think had I not just surrendered to the outcome how stuck I would still be.
I could list of countless other personal experiences that forced me to realise the beauty of surrendering but instead I've decided i'll close out this blog post by reiterating that the art of surrendering isn't about quitting. It is about having the vision boards and the list of goals for the New Year, month or even week and having detailed plans and steps on how to achieve those but then also putting the goal itself almost completely out of your head and simply immersing yourself to what is in front of you right now. The art of surrendering is also accepting that plans, values and goals can change and just because you get something you thought you wanted doesn't mean you have to stick with it. The art of surrendering is about tapping into the intuition deep within all of us and picking up on the cues and signals our bodies try to give us in situations every day so that when we have bigger life decisions to make we're well attuned to what they might be trying to say to us.
Love & Light - Grainne xo