Dare boldly

A blog by Louise Gallagher

Letting go of control is impossible.


FLOW Acrylic on canvas 12" x 16" ©2015 Louise Gallagher

Acrylic on canvas
12″ x 16″
©2015 Louise Gallagher

For the past several years I have meditated on a word that acts as my ‘way-finding’ for the year.

Last year, the word that found me and rested with me throughout the year was, At Onement (atonement). The year before, Rejoice and before that Redemption.

This year, the word that found its way into my being present is, Flow.

I use the phrase, “found me” on purpose. I do not choose the word. The word chooses me. Left to my own devices, I’d probably choose something easier like ‘food’ or ‘fun’.

Allowing space for a word to find me is challenging. My mind wants to take control, to self-direct the process.

My heart knows better.

According to Wikipedia, the “positive psychology” definition of flow is, “Flow, also known as Zone, is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity.”

For me, Flow represents even more than just being in the moment, fully engaged. It means giving up my resistance, releasing my grasping for control and surrendering myself to what is, without fearing what might be if I am not dictating the way it must become.

I can be a despot sometimes. Yup. Just ask C.C. or my daughters. Sometimes, I like it all my way.

Funny thing about having it all my way… When it’s all my way there’s no room for anyone else’s way, or even for the Universe to turn up and have its way.

Being in ‘flow’ means, accepting I can let go of control and live in the in possibility of miracles shining all around. For my eyes and heart to be open to seeing miracles all around, I have to be willing to let go of holding the reins so tightly there’s no room for the light to get in.

Even in two short days of living with this word, I can feel the dissonance that happens when my mind chatter wants to overwhelm my heartbeat because it fears the quiet steady drumming of possibility at my door.

No way, it says, snapping at the synapses in my brain. You will not give up control. No. No. Never!

Be strong of heart, my wisdom voice whispers. Control is an illusion. You are not giving up anything.


I hadn’t thought of that.

Could it be that my fear of letting go of control is really all about letting go of something that isn’t real?


In focussing on letting go of control do I simply have to let go of holding onto the impossible?

Can it be so simple?

I’ve got another 363 days to find out.



Every year I create a painting to provide me a visual stimulus for my new word for the year. I created the painting above using a new technique I was trying out for the first time yesterday.  It was fun and fascinating and fabulously rewarding to allow the paint to flow!

I am also linking this post to Michelle W.’s Friday prompt at The Daily Post  — the invitation was to share a photo of something that speaks to NEW for you. This photo and painting are new for me this year!


Author: Louise Gallagher

I believe in wonder. I believe we are all magnificent beings of divine beauty. I believe we can make a difference in this world, through every act, word, thought. I believe we create ripples with everything we do and say and want to inspire everyone to use their ripple to create a better world for everyone. I'm grateful you're here.

28 thoughts on “Letting go of control is impossible.

  1. I like your way here, Louise. Just saying.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. And I like you Ann and your wonderful way of being present! Just saying. 🙂


  3. Geeze Louise …

    not sure your meaning/intent

    ‘go with flow’ … or ‘create flow’?

    I’ve never been able to ‘go with the flow’ as so many of my friends have encouraged me

    last year I took a course where one of the central focuses of the program was about ‘creating flow’ … and, yes, it was in a business development context. But, it was all rooted in relationship building, giving, doing … as opposed to traditional go-getter-think.

    I’m nearly a 1/2 year on … and I’m liking the flow I’m generating …. or maybe it’s finding me

    I am sure of one thing – it is ALL about mindset.

    I wish you happy new year, a year that flows well for you



    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love the word and look forward to hearing stories of flow moments this year. You might enjoy the book Finding Flow by Mihaly Csikzentmihalyi. It’s a bit of a research based look at the topic. I learned that like your word of the year it is less about us finding flow and more about understanding how we can put ourselves in situations wher it can find us!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’ll have to check out his book Ian — sounds fascinating. and I agree — it’s not about ‘finding’ or searching or seeking flow — it’s about allowing myself to be open to its presence. Hugs


  5. I look forward to hearing more about your relationship with the word flow Louise!
    Diana xo

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Love this word Louise! Go with it and be it!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I love it Louise!! The word, the painting, the idea behind it! I hope all is super with you at the start of this new year!! Much love ❤


  8. This is an interesting word and process to take through the year. I know what you mean about giving up control to go with the flow. However, I had never thought about control being an illusion. I had to think about that one for a while and I think I now see what you mean. It is a complex concept though and I will be interested in the next 363 days and your further thoughts on this.
    Are you keeping with the ‘Dare Boldly’ name for your website this year (last year you changed it to that)?


    • I am thinking I shall stay with Dare Boldly — it is a great reminder to me everyday to not take the safe path and to dare to be me!

      I look forward to exploring Flow with you Elizabeth — and to your comments. Happy New Year!


  9. Wow, this painting is a good start to the year for you and me both.


  10. Yet again this post left me feeling happy to know you


  11. Wow Louise, I love that painting. it goes so well with the word that has chosen you! All the best of adventures with the ‘flow’!


  12. You are the second person to mention ‘flow’ so I am absolutely going with this now; so simple but so difficult. Thanks Louise!


  13. The title captivated me and the following flow held me hostage. Acknowledging the truth set me free.

    My heart always feels lighter after you visit it. 💖


  14. Love your painting…you did capture the feel of flowing.


  15. First, I love the word. Joy seems to want to be my word this year. And the painting, so colorful…and flowy. Found you through the Daily post.


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