To struggle or surrender

I felt driven to accomplish things today.  Strangely enough, there wasn’t a lot for me to do.  The clinic schedule for the morning was light and, other than a yoga class, I didn’t have any personal appointments for the afternoon.

When I came home, I ate some lunch, paid my bills, wrote a few emails and only then felt like I was settling down.  Why the need to go-go-go?  What was I struggling with?  Why was I fighting the fight, for no good reason?

In my personal investigation of the niyama called ishvara pranidhana, or surrender, I’m realizing that the universe may have a different intention for me than what I had in mind that day.  I need to let go.  I need to accept what is happening.  I need to surrender to the moment.

Don’t get me wrong.  I am not giving up.  All I’m saying is that I need to recognize when I’m not using my energy constructively by forcing my will to go one way, when life seems to want to move in another direction.

As Deborah Adele says in Yamas and Niyamas, we should to flow with the current of life, paying attention to the clues that will allow us to respond with the next step.  She says it’s like dancing with a partner, not leading or following, but rather moving gracefully and in synchrony.

I see how jazz musicians surrender to ishvara pranidhana when they perform.  They know the basic tune but they improvise by listening to each other, picking up cues and following spontaneous moments that lead them to create a unique performance every time.  I love seeing the smiles on their faces when they’re in the groove and the music seems like it’s making itself.  Just watch this video of Esperanza Spalding and you’ll see what I mean.

So, I’ll take some advice and, as Deborah says, stop getting in my own way.  I’ll let the day unfold as it is meant to and remain open to the opportunities that become available, whatever they are.