Effort Surrender

Effort and Surrender

In yoga the wise sage Patanjali in his Yoga Sutras effort and surrender, (Abhyasa and Vairagya) is mentioned as a foundation for yoga practice and indeed for allowing the flow of life to move through you. It’s simple, like most of the sutras. Sutras or seeds to be planted and profound and when you start to  understand and realise its enormous impact on everything in creation.



A sustained relaxed effort is required to move toward making form from and idea. Abhyasa is consistent effort towards the goal.



The essential companion to a sustained and consistent effort is non-attachment, learning to let go of the many attachments, aversions, fears, and false identities that are clouding the true Self.


Even the breath embodies effort and surrender. Inhale as effort, exhale as surrender and from there it expands into everything in life.


Just this morning I was reading a quote by Ida Resi Alit, the high priestess in Bali.

“When you have a decision or a choice to take, here is what you can do: Keep silent first, don’t think about it, take a little rest. Empty yourself from the choice or from the decision, until it’s feels calm. Pray, next think about it, then you can take your decision or make the choice. And when you doubt, remember it creates the fears, and those fears create the hesitation. But if you surrender with no expectations, the result will come differently”


“Empty yourself until it feels calm”


Law of Attraction comes from this principle of Abhyasa and Vairagya. Life is happening and it cannot possibly flow through you and move you towards your goal when there is contraction or fear, rather than relaxation and surrender.


It makes sense that the consistent effort requires a surrendering to the many fears that arise in our process. The ways we avoid, the attachment to what we like and the aversion we feel when we deem something not good enough. Who are we to judge?


This is a HUGE topic. It’s lifelong exploration and awareness to moving in the direction of your heart, the dissolution of the conceptual idea of an ‘I’ , and allowing the flow of life happening without attachment and aversion.


A helpful suggestion to start bringing in more balance of Abhyasa (effort) and Varaigya (surrender) into your creative endeavours

  • Body Wisdom

Your body will help you. Start tuning into your physical sensations (this is where yoga practice is very supportive). Notice where you are contracted or where any tightness appears in your body. This very act of noticing the sensation in the body with consciousness is often enough to begin to unravel what’s going on. What usually happens is when fear arises it creates discomfort in the body, and then the mind takes over in a nano-second in an effort to eradicate and push away the discomfort. Awareness of the physical discomfort is key to being able to unravel what’s really going on.

Let me know how this lands in you. I’d love to know if anything in this article you find particularly useful and helpful.

with love and gratitude,


With love & gratitude,

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