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April 12, 2021

How Moving Taught Me the Difference between Will-Power & Willingness

Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Pexels.

It’s been said, when there’s a will, there’s a way – but I’m not sure if that’s always the case.
“Willpower” is often seen as something that allows us to stay the course, or to stay sober, or to keep our chin up. Its often seen as hard, as tactical, and as forceful. There is certainly a time and a space for this energy.
But willingness is different. Willingness is openness, the openness to trying something different or just seeing things a different way. Willingness is saying “What if I didn’t see my life circumstances as a challenge?” “What if I let go of some of this internal drama?” “What if I listened to him, or her, or them, instead of closing them off?” “What if I trusted?” “What if I’m lovable?” “What if I’m capable?” “What if I’m not the sum of my past experiences?”
Willingness allows change, in a peaceful, compassionate way where we can open the door to something different, not all the way, not even an inch, but maybe just a millimeter. The door to a new reality, a new existence, a new way of being.
My latest dance with the gentle but powerful energy of willingness comes from how I see others and my judgments about them. After moving to New Mexico, I realized that being in a different place, a different culture, even – has opened the door to seeing things in a different light. Moving from a culture where people are well-versed in spirituality and psychology, it was easy to diagnose people or make assumptions about them. We might be right, but we also might not be.
Having the willingness to not know the answers is incredibly freeing. It’s helping me get past some of my assumptions about people and about life.
In the end, our beliefs and our assumptions have a huge bearing on how we perceive life and interact with others. Instead of being set in stone, having the willingness to even simply consider that things could be seen with a different view can be incredibly freeing. It can open the heart to the lightness of love and connection where there was once fear, judgment, and separation.
I’m excited to see where willingness takes me next.
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