Why is it important to not go with the flow?

Imagine being on a boat sailing down the river and being presented with the options of controlling the boat with its oars or letting the currents take over. Which would you choose?

An obvious choice here would be the former – where for objective reasons you will want to pick having the controls over the boat and the journey overall. Now let’s apply this to the principles of life and check – would you still want to steer through the decisions of your life with full control or simply go with the flow? Have you been living your life consciously or going where the currents take you?

Let’s break this down. While being carefree and easy going isn’t a bad thing, striving for a conscious balance between taking ownership and inspired action on your goals will help you take charge of your life.

But… Why do we go with the flow in the first place?

Oftentimes we may find ourselves making decisions from a place of comfort trying to avoid any discomfort or conflict. However, if we are not mindful of the extent to which we prolong taking charge of our life, we could find ourselves losing sight of our end goals and get swayed by the currents.

For events and circumstances where you have limited control over your situation – going with the flow and taking it one step at a time could help. However, it’s important to remember that life does not take care of itself. Life is what we make of it. Opting to go with the flow as a standard response could lead you somewhere that’s not a part of your life plan. In the long run, one could become a bystander in their own life because they have chosen an unconscious way of living.

That said, the conflicts or disruptions we encounter in life can often present themselves with opportunities, should we choose to reflect and review our place in the world. Many leaders who have persevered through the challenges of life have found greater personal fulfillment and success than those who have submitted to their current circumstances.

Looking to integrate a good balance of going with the flow and reviewing your actions? Here are a few daily practices that can help :

  1. Journaling : Maintain a journal that allows you to pen down your long term goals and daily thoughts. Over time this will help you assess your daily actions with your accomplishments.
  2. Daily intention check : Notice your intentions behind the desire to go with the flow. You will realize instantly if it is the externalities that are driving you or your true calling itself.
  3. Accountability partner : Share your goals with your circle that will keep you accountable. An accountability partner will not only keep you motivated but will also let you know if you are steering away from your planned goals.

Honouring our overall growth and aligning with our better selves is what going with the flow should truly be about. It can serve as an effective tact in the overall strategy of designing your best life.

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