The Ebb and Flow. The Highs and Lows.

So there you are flying high and everything is going perfectly. You are on top of your game taking care of every aspect of your life and everything is falling into place beautifully. And then it happens. You hit a wall; a brick wall. Struggling as that awesome wave you were just surfing swallows you up and pulls you out to sea with no life savour insight. Wave after wave crashes down on you and you wonder how could everything go  sideways so quickly when you did everything seamlessly right?

When you are embracing the “flow” periods in life you feel invincible, like you will never again hit rock bottom. You have mastered this thing called life and found the holy grail to all your answers. It is incredibly disappointing when you lose that connection. When it becomes challenging to find the beauty and positivity in situations that life has thrown your way and you fall hard. This is what many people refer to as the “ebb” or  “falling off the wagon” and in some situations it is when you experience a “relapse.”

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And so it begins, the internal dialogue of self criticism. “If only I was more present, more mindful this wouldn’t happen.” “Maybe if I was smarter I could see this coming.” I think it’s safe to say we have all been there. I personally have experienced this many times throughout my life. Last year, Mr. Ebb was very present and didn’t seem to want to go anywhere anytime soon. When it happened it was exactly like being side swiped by a semi-truck. In shock I couldn’t make sense of why this was all happening. I used all my holistic tools daily in helping me stay grounded in my mind and body, yet there I was far from feeling healed, balance or healthy. How did this happen? Why did I fall so hard, so fast?

When life is coming at you all at once it is difficult to see the bigger picture. These seasons of ebb are usually accompanied by moments of crisis. Job loss, illness, relationship problems to name a few. These stressors can lead to anxiety and uncontrollable feelings of panic and stress that can throw you off your feet into a “flight or fight” response.  When you hit that wall it very quickly becomes apparent that there is a lesson to be learned, a time for self-reflection. You realize that no amount of Band-Aids will cover up the pain that needs to be faced in order to move to the next chapter.  It’s in these incredible hard times that we fall to the bottom and have no choice but to re-evualte pieces of ourselves and the path we are on. The ebb is the reminder of the lessons we need to learn. As we conquer these lessons we build strength to get back up and surf the next wave. It’s when we experience these moments we strip away everything that no longer serves us on our journey and we face our vulnerabilities. Without the strength that is gained in these ebb periods we can not fully experience moments of flow with gratitude in our hearts.

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As hard as it is to do, surrender. Surrender to the experience and let go of control. Allowing your emotions and  your intuition to guide you through your healing journey. Trust yourself. Embrace the waves as you move through the pain finding the flow within the ebb. Feel it, experience it and then begin to release it. It’s o.k to be not o.k. When you are living in the ebb, it is so important to allow yourself space to just “be”. Be angry, sad, confused or frustrated. Be these things fully heartedly and without personal judgment. Rest and continue to take care of yourself. Sleep if your tired, cry if you are sad, have a bath if you need to relax. Lower your expectations and take a break from your daily superhero activities. Be patient and kind to yourself and accept that this too is apart of the journey.

Everything in life functions in cycles. From the moon to the seasonal changes, we are no different. There is always going to be the light to the darkness, the yin to the yang, the ups to the downs, you can not have one without the other. So the next time you are riding that perfect wave, enjoy every moment experiencing it in all it’s glory. Breathe in the beauty and bliss to the core of your being and hold on to it. It’s those perfect waves and sunny days that will help push you through those cloudy and stormy times.

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