Excerpt from Passion in the Bones: A Guide to Breaking the Chains of Negativity and Living Your Own Adventure.

It is amazing to watch the way the water flows down a river. Nature makes sure the water has a natural flow to it. It takes the path of least resistance. Likewise, everything that is meant to be in our lives should have a natural flow. If you find yourself trying to force something to happen in your life, it is probably not meant to be.

When I was younger and thought I had met the right person, or was applying for my dream job, I would go to any lengths to try to make the situation work. However, it seemed the more I tried to force those situations, the less likely they were to work out for me. And, when things did not work out as I had hoped, I would become terribly discouraged. I now realize that the situations that were not meant to be in my life were simply not going to work out, no matter how hard I tried. Trying to force those situations was an exercise in futility that only brought me down further.

On the other hand, the people, jobs, and situations in my life that were meant to be had a natural flow to them, and I did not have to force them. Of course, even when going with the flow, you will face challenges that require you to put forth your best efforts to overcome them. However, when you invest 100 percent of your efforts into a situation, it should improve and progress naturally. When it does not, it may be time to move on.

I have since learned the importance of letting go and going with the flow in all areas of my life, even my real estate transactions. When I sold my commercial property, I decided to make an offer on a small house on a lake near my parents’ home. To ensure that my offer would be accepted, I offered more than the asking price. I was so sure the seller would accept it. Much to my dismay, my realtor advised me that the seller accepted another offer. At first, I was upset, but I reminded myself that, if it was not meant to be, I needed to let it go. I decided then not to worry about it and to continue looking until I found the house that was meant for me.

To my surprise, a few weeks later, the little lake house was back on the market. The other buyer had backed out. I called my realtor and told him to put in an offer for the asking price—not one dime more. I decided if I was meant to have the house, things would work out and, if not, I would let it go again. To my amazement, the seller quickly accepted my offer, and I ended up closing on it in less than a month. At that point, the transaction had a natural flow to it. It is so strange that, when I felt desperate to purchase the house and even offered more than the asking price, the deal fell through. However, when I stepped back and let it go, then everything fell into place. The house was meant to be mine, so my willingness to let it go did not stop the natural flow of things; it simply gave me the peace of mind to accept whatever was meant to be.

Don’t force something that does not have a natural flow to it. Just learn to let go, “go with the flow,” and keep moving forward in a positive direction. And remember that losing something that is not meant to be in your life is not an ending, but a necessary step toward a new beginning.