Trust and surrender are two words that we hear a lot in personal development circles and inspirational song lyrics — the kind of songs that tend to bring tears to the eyes. And yet the application of trust and surrender in our daily lives can feel more like an epic inner battle. In fact, for the past several months this inner battle has been raging within me, as the level of trust and surrender required to continue the evolution of an unfolding vision of infusing indigenous values into the modern world has risen to a new and intensified level of challenge.
In Maria’s post last week, In Search Of A Passion, she wrote about the misinformation that so many thought leaders have perpetuated on the masses that, “We just have to find our passion and all will be well.” While the truth is that most people never find a single passion, or any passion at all that makes them feel completely alive in their working lives. The same could be said for fully integrating trust and surrender. It’s easy to say that we just need to stick to our vision and trust that everything will work out. It’s another thing to live it.
The same could also be said of the ongoing conversation around organizational culture, in that while there is a growing body of research showing a strong correlation between values-driven leadership and greater profitability, just having the research has not proven to be a significant motivation for more companies to jump on the culture train.
While our modern society preaches the continual mantra of evidence-based, research-based, number’s-driven, big-data-driven, and so on, we are drowning in a sea of data and research that tells us to do what we don’t want to do. Quantum physics tells us that we are all energy and we’re all connected. Climate science tells us compellingly that we’re on a destructive course with nature. The social sciences tell us that we are fundamentally driven more so by intrinsic motivation — the desire to do work that matters — than extrinsic motivations like money and prestige.
Now enter trust and surrender. These are the missing ingredients in so many of our life and work challenges. They represent the subtle energy that tips the scale from predictability to vision, from remaining within our comfort zone to venturing into the unknown, and from doing work that pays the bills to doing work that has meaning and value for society at large.
The resistance to responding appropriately to climate research, or acknowledging the implications that we’re all energy and we’re all connected, or embracing the reality that values-driven companies are more profitable, is that we would rather live in the space of what is known and comfortable.
Trusting our vision and surrendering to the outcome is the challenging, often messy, difficult inner work that leads us out of the weed patch of denial to the sun-drenched meadow of blooming flowers and honeybees.
In my own epic inner battle with trusting an uncertain vision I continue to delve to deeper levels of surrender. It’s not pleasant, and many times I consider throwing in the towel. I allow that feeling of doubt to come to the surface, then I reconsider, then I trust some more. It’s all a process and a journey that we take one step at a time.