This past weekend, I took my daughters on a date to see Soul Surfer. You may have heard it described as the inspirational movie about the teenage surfer who survives a shark attack, and goes on to become a Professional Surfer.
Maybe you are scared of sharks, hate salt water, and think surfers are stoners. That’s okay – the message is still for you. The movie is more than surfing; the message is about the soul.
There are three kinds of surfers:
- Those who take every wave that comes their way, searching for the ride of their life. Quick to tire, quit short, and miss the real opportunities of life.
- Those who stay on the shoreline, watching life pass by, talking about it and strategizing, while they wait for the perfect wave. Full of fear to risk and fail, they never try.
- Those who are patient and prepared, trust their instincts, and know which wave they are suppose to ride. Present in the moment, doing what they love. This is a Soul Surfer.
For me, the pivotal moment in the movie is a conversation between father and daughter, at the championships. Each surfer can accumulate 10 scores and keep the best two. The father’s words of wisdom are: “No one says you have to take every wave. Don’t waste your time. Be patient. The energy is building before the wave surfaces. Trust your intuition. You’ll know which one you are suppose to ride.”
Let’s break it down:
- It’s okay to say no. Don’t say yes to everything. Don’t over-commit and under-deliver. This is a life of plenty – don’t take more than you need.
- Don’t waste your energy – time, money, resources.
- Be patient. A Soul Surfer is patient, present, and purposeful.
- The energy is building before you see the creation. Sometimes waiting is part of the plan.
- Trust your intuition.
How do we give our children the gift of intuition – the permission to be Soul Surfers? We give our children this gift through respect, trust, and space.
Respect. We must respect our children as separate beings, capable of their own thoughts, feelings, and intuition. If we honor their opinions and validate their feelings, they will trust their intuition.
Trust. It’s okay to experience fear and overcome it. When the Soul Surfer was asked if she was scared to get back in the water, she said, “Yes, and I am not going to let that keep me from living my life.”
Space. Space is mindfulness, perspective, and struggle. We must give our children the space to feel it, and the stillness to hear it. This is the space of mindfulness. Sometimes we need to step back and gain a bigger perspective. This is the space of perspective. We don’t need to rescue and protect our children from ever challenging experience. To figure things out, to face the challenge, to hit a few riptides and overcome, makes them stronger. This is the space of struggle.
This movie gave perspective to my life and my role as tour guide on this journey called conscious parenting. I can’t think of a more perfect date night with my girls on Holy Saturday. I am looking for opportunities to practice my surfing skills, and to allow my children to be the best surfers they can be.
Cultivating Patience and Trust,