Hard working has been praised and endorsed throughout all cultures and history as a virtue for eons. It has certainly inspired patience, endurance, strength, resilience and heroic acts. It brought us through challenging times and insurmountable situations. It played its part well in our human development. The question, is it still up to date in this day and age where our collective evolution is unfolding at more and more rapid rate?
In my interactions with clients, this “hard work” mentality begins to exhibit more pain in their lives than inspiration. More often than not, the “hard workers” show symptoms of stress, overload, burden, overwhelm and frustration. What is going on? What is happening is embedded in the words of “hard work” are the vibrational elements of heaviness, arduousness, and emotional density. Does this kind of vibration inspire creativity, innovation, beauty and mastery? Not likely. Why? Because energetically speaking, the latter qualities are at a higher level than the former. Then you ask, what do we do? Well, what if we transform the approach of “hard work” into a concept that is more aligned with the truth of who we are? By that I mean we retain what is valuable in the tradition of hard working, and release what no longer resonates with us. Specifically, we honor the values of consistency, commitment, concentration, taking time to perform a task, taking responsibilities for the things that are in our care. Meanwhile, we let go of the struggle, effortfulness, overly self reliant mentality, solo playing tendency, and close minded attachment to familiarity. This leads to a new concept I call “joyful co-creation”.
What is this “joyful creation”? It is being an open and willing participant of the universe. It is being more and more aligned with our inner inspirations and intuitions. It is taking care of our essential physical, mental and emotional needs. It is the ability to be aware, alert, clear and focused. It is being receptive to refreshing inputs. It is engaging in collaboration. It is being resourceful. It is being enthusiastic and passionate about what we do. It is doing what we do and have fun. It is assuming the childlike playfulness. It is growing and expanding our horizons every day. You may be saying to yourself, “Too idealistic, too good to be true.” Is it really? The fact we tend to have a difficult time welcoming the easier things in our lives has to do with our unfamiliarity with worthiness to receive, and our need to be in charge of things. Take a look at nature, does the sun rise up with much effort? Does the air flow with much effort? Do plants grow with much effort? And in our own lives, do all the memorable experiences come to us with much effort? In the extreme example of a mother giving birth to a baby, yes, there could be tremendous pain, and it is called labor. However, is the mother herself doing hard work, or is she more allowing a natural process to come through her? What we are releasing from hard work is the laboriousness that we have gotten used to as part of doing.
Sometimes moving through a co-creating process with the universe, there could be pain. When pain is present, by allowing it, feeling it, loving ourselves through it, and trusting the divine purpose in it, the process is made less insufferable, and more joyful. Joyful co-creation is not the absence of pain, rather it is allowing the doing to come from the place of being, so that there is ease, inspiration and harmony in what we do. From this place, our body is more relaxed, our mind is more alert. We will be more productive and not easily exhausted. It is about faith in a universe that knows how to move all things for our greatest benefit, so we no longer need to push hard to make it happen, instead we receive what the Universe has ordained to come our way with openness and worthiness.
Then how can we make the shift from hard work to joyful co-creation? There are a few practices to begin with:
Slow down the pace of internal and external activities to more balance and health
Take time to do each thing that is in front of us well
Breathe slower, fuller, more consciously and more often
Attend to our bodily and emotional needs
Set intentions for the day or each endeavor to allow our doing stem from the place of perfection and alignment
Look for what is right, acknowledge and celebrate our successes
As we experience more safety and alignment in our lives, our inner wisdom will lead us more and more intuitively as to the steps to take. May you experience more and more joy and creativity in all you do!