When Surrendering is Not Your Thing

I have a problem with surrendering. From my research I know the biggest step in giving up resistance is to surrender, but I’ve always been a rebel.

I can’t do it.

I’ve never been able to.

I’ve wanted to, but it doesn’t happen.

I fight it.

I think it’s the word. When I hear surrender, I see myself lying down on the ground white flag in hand. Lifeless.

And that doesn’t feel good to me.

When I envision it, it makes my mind and be free.

It makes me want to “make something happen”.

Besides being a “doer”, I am also a pusher.

In the past, I’ve done a “good job” (she says sarcastically) at pushing myself past most mental anguish, physical pain, or limiting circumstances.

What I’ve realized is though the pushing gets things done, it feels like crap. To say it is difficult, draining, and completely counterproductive, is putting it mildly.

I know the pattern is a throwback from my childhood that it worked well in difficult situations.

This coping mechanism within me used to instruct me to ignore, push, and these survival skills helped me in many ways. I wouldn’t be the person I am today or accomplished what I have if I had not followed my intuition at that point in my life. And I like who I have become.

But now the resistance to surrendering is not serving me.

I know I can’t undo or fix who I am and what made me that way, nor do I want to.

So I decided to choose a word that makes me feel empowered: release.

I can release my resistance.

I can release the pressure.

I can release my emotion.

I can release the notion of making the “right choice”.

For a situational control freak, being able to release feels so much better.

It soothes my childhood self need to have some control, but at the same time allows my adult self to be free.

I totally get it if the act of surrendering on any level is not your thing. I used to equate it with an image of lying flat out on the ground admitting you are powerless to change something.

Then I realized “surrendering” is optional, you can create the freedom you want your own way.

Here’s how I turned it around:

If you want to lower your resistance and create change, instead of forcing yourself into surrendering when it doesn’t feel comfortable to you, the question you should ask yourself is:

What word can I use and what action will I take to allow myself the freedom to let go of what doesn’t serve me anymore?

For me it was release, but for you it could be something entirely different.

Here’s to creating freedom and doing it your way!

3 Comments on When Surrendering is Not Your Thing

  1. For me it’s detaching. I’m practicing detaching from outcome. It feels better, it feels empowering. But it certainly is a process to initially say “I don’t care. It doesn’t matter if what I really want doesn’t happen.” Part of me still wants to be attached to it, but the more I say it, the easier it is to believe it and then I really am believing it and can truly detach.

    Thanks for a great article!

    • Laura says:

      Hi Gail,

      Thanks for sharing this! I love the way you are embracing “detaching” so gently. It makes it much easier to do:)


  2. Melisa says:

    This article really helped me – it reminded me to give myself space. I think my word is “allowing” . . .allowing myself to say no, to take time in making decisions, to not have control of everything. I think I forced myself to be busy, to be active, to always be achieving something, doing something. The pain forced me to slow down – I never saw myself as a particular active, go-getter type of person, but I was. I am. I managed to collect lots of letters after my name professionally – I have no idea why or how it happened when I look back, but those tests I took must have served me at the time, but time is changing and I can allow myself to change with it.

    your article gives me lots to think about. Thanks!

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