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The Art of Allowing: The Difference Between 'Force' and 'Allow

Updated: Sep 6, 2018

These words …  So much is brought up in me just writing them, “FORCE” and “ALLOW”  — Even with no other words to give them context, these are charged words for me.

One word feels so masculine, and for me, for most of my life has been the goal: representing power and strength and courage.  The other word, so feminine, so weak and meek.  

As a minority woman in the business of entertainment, I have had to push hard to make my dreams come true.  I worked hard, and I had to forge through a lot of pain and discomfort to make things happen. I also used a lot of force.  When you work in a business where you may only work 20-30 days out of the whole year, you push hard when you get the work. You use a lot of force on yourself, and on situations with tight deadlines. I also used it in my life. I would exhibit force when I met against something that scared me. As if I could 'force it' to go away with my energy.  As if force could dissolve the fear away.  

Force has brought me far in life, but there was a point where it could take me no further.  You see, force doesn’t actually get you through something, it just pushes what you need to deal with back further out of the way for now, so you have to deal with it later. Force gets you through things momentarily.  It gets what you want for a brief moment … But it is not a solution.  It is almost as if it’s a way to avoid what is really happening. It is not in alignment with the Universe, so in the end what you create out of force, crumbles.  I know this from experience.

Today, I see these words in a completely different light.

Today, I would choose allow over using force to control, because I know now that this is the more agreeable choice. This doesn’t mean becoming a doormat.  And it does not mean it is easy (at first).  But it does mean that although we are in control of our own lives to an extent, we are also not the biggest fish in the fish tank.  

This concept of allowing and forcing really came to me yesterday in an example that couldn’t be clearer.  It is a topic I have been working on, taking notice of how it operates in my life, and I was grateful for this lesson yesterday. 

I have been wanting to go to the ocean. To sit beside the sea, and to feel the sand in my toes and the fresh air on my face. I have been craving this. It’s been a busy week for me, and I know that when I get that feeling of being overwhelmed starting to surge beneath my skin, it the exact time when I need to slow down and do something for myself. So, I was asking a friend if he would like to join me. He is going through his own stuff in his life, and couldn’t make it … But I kept pushing. He is a great measure of when I am in the “force” mode or “control” mode because he doesn't respond to force or control, and that is a beautiful gift. For that reason, we are extremely close friends — The Universe is wonderful this way, and always gives us the teacher when we need them. I am grateful to my friend for being who he is.

Anyway, I kept trying to put the beach into our plans, and he kept resisting.  But, he was asking for his truth and I was asking for mine.  This is good.  I recommend pursing what you need at all times in the most honest way.  But what I realized was this:  I was pushing and trying to control the HOW I was going to the beach. I woke up the day after we kept going back and forth and realized I was trying to make the beach about him, when in fact, the beach was not about him, it was about me. I was trying to control with whom I went to the beach.  So, the next day, I let that idea go, and I apologized for trying to push. I decided that I would stop trying to control the “HOW” and came to peace knowing I still had a week before I was to leave to host the Miss America pageant, and that the opportunity would arise. I let go and allowed the opportunity to reveal itself. And low and behold:  A dear friend and amazing crystal healer friend of mine reached out and she was also wanting to go the beach. In fact, she was swimming regularly at the beach, and was feeling amazing about it.  So, I made plans to meet her at the beach the next evening.

My day at the beach
"The path to joy most certainly goes through the the time and space of the unknown. Face the unknown and your own fears,  knowing it is the path to joy."

Now, the idea of allowing is a newer concept that I am practicing. I have noticed in the past year that allowing is much better.  Whenever I get scared or a bit uncertain, I do try to go back into control mode or force mode, and it usually creates more problems.  So, since I do believe that the universe is always helping us towards our joy, I got another message the next day.  Another friend of mine was at the beach, sitting there and sent me a video of the beach.  It was a beautiful reminder and for me, it felt like a nice nod from the Universe that even if my crystal healer friend and I hadn’t met up, I would have had yet another opportunity to go to the beach with a friend.  

All of this points to the power of allowing.  And what I have also learned is that when you allow life to give you gifts, and you allow certain things to unfold as they want to, there comes with it a renewed sense of faith and healing.  It feels like the Universe or God is looking out for you, and that feeling is helpful as we go through the ups and downs of this magical journey called life.

With love xx

Carrie Ann Inaba