I once read that earth is the only place we can feel the wind on our skin. Of course that sounds so romantic, until you realize earth is the only place upon which we live, ergo, the only place we’re likely to feel wind! Anyway…the wind is a great metaphor for our lives and that’s what I’d like to talk about.
In our atmosphere, the wind is always moving; sometimes we feel it, sometimes we don’t, but it’s always there. The stuff in our lives is the same way–sometimes it exists without our knowledge, sometimes it blows warm and tender, and other times it blows a gale and knocks us on our keester! We cannot turn it off, so let’s learn to maneuver and harness it to work for us.
The unnoticed winds in our lives represent normal day-to-day life and most of us navigate that without a hitch. When the wind kicks up a little dust devil in our lives, we have to assess the situation and decide on a course of action. In this case, it may be a little messy, but usually short-lived and harmless. Having a strong personal foundation will allow you to stand strong and let the wind pass through without disruption.
However, when the winds around you really kick up, they can create havoc, but you can still navigate them with some effort. In sailing, heading directly into the wind is ill-advised and forward progress is made through a series of zigzags called tacking. If you encounter something, or someone in your life who is causing a great, windy upset–the term blowhard works for me–don’t try to battle head on, instead zig and zag until you’re through the wind.
To harness the wind in your life, replicate piloting an air balloon. Air balloons work with the natural wind currents to guide the balloon. By raising or lowering the balloon, sometimes even just the slightest bit, you can find just the right wind current to move in the desired direction. No force, no effort – only a series of minor altitude adjustments along the way. In this way, you select which winds to encounter and use to your benefit.
As metaphors, standing still as the wind swirls is awareness; tacking is somewhat an avoidance technique; and ballooning invites you to adjust your altitude. Based on your standards, values, boundaries, and personal foundation, and the specific situation, you will know which one best serves you. While we’d all love a continuous warm southerly wind caressing our skin–best experienced on a sandy beach with an umbrella drink–with a little navigational knowledge we can brave, and even harness, all the winds of life.
Set your course and harness the wind!