By Taylor Meadows

There is nothing I love more than when I have all of my ducks in a row.

I love this feeling even more than a giant slice of watermelon on a blistering North Carolina summer’s day. And that says a lot because NC heat is brutal.

If you want to see me melt down (when it’s not ‘that time of the month’), kick a duck or two out of my neatly organized row.

In the past month, I have learned that a lot is out of our control. (Yes, I just said to myself, “Way to state the obvious, Taylor.”) Sometimes this isn’t always obvious, though, especially to women because, well, let’s be honest, we are often the glue that holds a lot of things together. We raise families, maintain friends, pursue careers, workout, eat right, volunteer, and much, much more. (If I continue, my brain might explode!)

As the authors of Half the Sky, Sheryl WuDunn and Nicholas Kristof, say, “Women hold up half the sky.”

Yes, we do, and we hold it up while bleeding from our bodies once a month. (TMI? Well, I don’t care.)

I say all of this to ask a few questions. How do we maintain control when one of our cords of control is severed? How do we become that warrior that they tell us to be in yoga practice without turning into a raging monster?

Breathe my sisters and, with an open mind, proceed for my answers…

1. Relinquish understanding and control. This may seem ironic when I am trying to tell you how to maintain control when your plan seems to spiral out of control. Sometimes the best learning time in life is when you don’t have it all together like you planned. As women, when we lose control we become uncomfortable and try to control other things (often things like our diets). But what if we tried, just once, to open our hands, stretch out our arms, and say, “I accept whatever comes my way even though I don’t understand why.” I swear there is something beautiful in that, and I promise I have a hard time relinquishing too.

2. Accept the duck that was lost and work with it. Ladies, we need to accept what comes our way and stop trying to make sense of it all. Work with what you have in the present moment. You might have one item missing in your neatly crafted Martha Stewart list, but guess what? There are probably 10 other things that are still going according to plan! We spend so much time worrying about the one or two things that we don’t have our neatly manicured hands on that we forget about the things we do (including that our hands are not always neatly manicured).

3. Take the pressure off. First of all, don’t you dare point a finger and say society puts pressure on you to keep it together. I see you girl. Put it down. Yes, I agree that society has a distorted view of our role, but we give in to this and add to the pressure. At the end of the day, we put the pressure on ourselves. Take the lid off of the hypothetical pressure cooker before it explodes on you and everyone around you. Once you do this you may not have a meltdown when your life plan takes a slight change of course.

Let’s boil my 3 points down to 3 words: trust the process.

(I had to count to make sure that was actually 3.)

Try to focus and relax when the sand slips through your hands. Are you alive? Check. Are you a fabulous woman? Check. Do you have the capability to learn? Check. Now I challenge you today to flip your hair and say, “Long hair don’t care.”

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