- Some people think we don’t have to go out of our way to create our highest destiny; it happens to us irregardless of what we choose to do.
- Other people feel that it is entirely up to each of us to create our highest destiny, so we don’t have to plan or strategize our way forward in life.
Of course, you can also believe a bit of both, like I do.
Many Americans tend to follow the idea that it’s up to us to create our future, and that if something isn’t going well in our lives, we just have to work harder. Like the picture on the right, we create a “map” to success in our minds. It’s just a matter of time before we achieve success with this linear or map driven approach.
When you look around at the solutions to our current American and global economic problems, most of the solutions have to do with this idea that we are the masters of our destiny, and we just have to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps to reach “Success”.
There’s nothing wrong with the idea of working hard, except:
- if you’re working hard for an idea of success that is flawed.
- if you aren’t as powerful as you think you are, and aren’t actually competent to succeed.
- if the world is changing so drastically that the old way of doing things just doesn’t work anymore.
Probably like most of you and most of my coaching clients, I have worked hard to create my own destiny at many times in my life. This is part of life.
But there is a problem with us humans — we tend to make mistakes, sometimes big ones. Collectively, we have been making a large negative impact on the earth and its ecosystems in ways that an individual or even a bunch of bright individuals can’t solve. In thousands of years on this planet, we still have not found a way to end wars, poverty, hunger, etc. because individual or national self-interest is not enough.
The older that I’ve become, the more I see something larger than humanity, pulling us along. I’ve been learning to surrender my own ideas of what my highest destiny will be. I tend to trust people who are not so rah, rah about our individual effort and who are more concerned with how we collaborate. Of course, saying that collaboration will solve all problems can also be a trap. How often have you seen committees design a great product or a new paradigm?
My belief is that in many cases, a better approach for creating “success” in our lives is to work with the energies around us and attract destiny partners. I know it’s a woo-woo idea to work with our energy to attract good into our life, but I’ve seen it work too many times to doubt that our personal energy state matters.
Now, how does this relate to writing?
When you look at great stories, whether in books or movies, many of the best stories involve the main character and a partner or set of partners who find a way to save the day or conversely tell a story of the lack of the right partners to heal the situation. We like to read or watch a story where something larger than the heroes comes to their aid. We’ve come to expect that the help comes only after the hero or heroine has surrendered the concept of success.
The movie, The Hunger Games is a recent example of this type of story, where being strong isn’t enough. The heroine Katniss Everdeen gets help the more she surrenders her own success. Throughout the story, she also has several destiny partners come to her aid.
It’s the same in our lives. When we surrender to the flow or Tao of life, and use our best judgment on what to do next, Grace course corrects our lives for us. Sometimes that course correction isn’t easy. Other times it is.
For today, here are a few questions to ponder:
When have your best “destiny partners” come into your life — when you actively seek them out or when you are in a relaxed or surrendered state?
Do your stories include destiny partners for the main character? Sometimes these are called Allies.
The climax of a story often involves a situation where the main character can not solve the problem at hand, and ends up relying on a greater power to move through to the conclusion of the book. What is the unsolvable dilemma in your story?
How could you flow more and push less with your destiny?