The Bottom is a Good Place to Be


As a child I fell into a swimming pool. There was no one around, and I was doing something I shouldn’t have and somehow fell in. Clothes on, tennis shoes, everything. I did not know how to swim, and was a bit afraid of the water. I immediately sank to the bottom. Fortunately I  pushed off and shot right back up. Before I knew it I found myself on the side of the pool, drenched,. It was all so dramatic, it felt as though I had been pulled out.


Almost immediately I realized how lucky I was to have gotten to the bottom of the pool. I knew that had I not gotten to the bottom, I was not going to get out. Floating around the middle was not going to be a good plan for change. Sometimes the bottom is the best place you can be. In difficult times in my life, while working with people in challenging moments of their own lives I remembered the lesson of my falling into the pool. I am, in this difficult time of all of our lives, remembering it now.


The bottom is in many ways the best time of your life. It is the moment when you discover something essential about yourself. It is the point of power, and you can draw a direct line from it to your ultimate success. It is essential to recognize it for what it is, the bottom. If not recognized, we  are perhaps not at the bottom, but on a ledge, and that by not paying attention, with poor decision making, or reaching states of panic, despair or rage that we can fall a lot further.


None of these are character or moral statements. Perhaps we should get away from the moralizing about who is bad and who is good. Perhaps the distance between the two is not as far as imagined. Making a bad decision, not recognizing that bottoming out is a precious thing.


So this is where we are at, this is our opportunity, as individuals, countries, and a world. We have the choice to pay attention to,  to attend to, what is most important. We can focus on what we each are angry about, or we can respect and listen to what we are all responsible for.


We are at the bottom of something. We can choose right here, right now to use that power to become who we would be. Mindful, even with the most intense emotions we experience. This is an important time. Let’s find the power to change. Peace.


Drake PoweComment