Lifehouse Videos

How do I Surrender?

Last week, we discussed surrender in a general sense, leaning to Eckhart Tolle’s definition: “Surrender is the simple, yet profound wisdom of yielding to, rather than opposing, the flow of life.”

This week, we talk about logistics. Even when people begin to grasp the concept of surrender, we are often met with some variety of, “Yeah, but…how do I do that?”

While there is no one right way to surrender, we find the following tips and practices helpful.

1. We Reach Out to Surrender:

At BodySoul School, we encourage our students to reach out often–maybe even daily! Reaching out is a concrete action we can take to surrender. Reaching out means contacting a safe person who can help you find your center when you are in the moment of distress. We often use the following methods to Reach Out:

  • Marco Polo app
  • Phone call
  • Talk to someone in person

2. We Speak Our Surrender Out Loud to a Witness

When we use our voice to make a surrender, something magical happens. There is something that happens in the neural pathways and bodily reactions that is different than simply sending a text, or thinking something through in our own minds. Using our voice pushes us to solidify our intention, and practice humility and accountability.

3. Start by saying,

“Hi…it’s _________. I need to surrender.”

4. Next, begin an “I am feeling….” dialogue.

When you begin to process “I am feeling…” statements, it keeps your focus and awareness on your own locus of control: what is happening inside your own mind, heart, body,  and spirit. You might even locate where the feeling is located in the body. Tension and contraction in the body is a common sign that we are holding on to distressing emotions that could benefit from surrender.

5. Explain your situation, without getting caught in the story.

Most often when we reach out, we have been triggered by some sort of situation or circumstance. It might feel necessary to explain the back-story to be able to fully understand what you are feeling, and be able to truly let it go.

As you explain the situation, be careful not to get caught up in the details of the story. There is a difference between processing to understand, and creating a case to justify your position. As you practice surrender, you will gain greater capacity to feel the difference, and learn how to process in healthy, accountable, and empowering ways.

6. Apply the Serenity Prayer

As you process, you can begin to apply the first stanza of The Serenity Prayer:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.

As you begin to piece apart the situation, you can ask yourself 2 things:

What do I have the power to change?

What don’t I?

Both questions point us to the power of surrender.

If there are beliefs, mindsets, or willingness issues happening–these are thing you DO have the power to change. You can choose to surrender beliefs that aren’t serving you.

Maybe you can identify things you canNOT change that are keeping you stuck. Things you cannot change might look like:

  • other people’s opinions
  • other people’s behavior
  • the way you are perceived by others
  • your situation or circumstances
  • outcomes

You can surrender the things that are outside of your control, knowing that you are giving them OVER to a Power that is greater than you, with the capacity and power to hold all things in wisdom, love, and justice.

7. Say the words, “I Surrender…”

As you state the specific beliefs, mindsets, attitudes, opinions, outcomes, or circumstances, watch for a tangible sense of lightening in the body, mind, and spirit.

When you surrender to a safe person, they will hold your surrender with space and acceptance. There is no need to judge a surrender as “good” or “bad,” it simply is what it is, and they are simply there to witness this sacred and personal process towards spiritual freedom.


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