Since I wrote ‘10 Journaling Prompts‘, I’ve been thinking about one particular idea that I included in the article that resonated so deeply with me, I’ve been reflecting on the answer ever since. The prompt was … What, in your opinion, is strength?
I’m not particularly physically strong. I can’t lift weights or bench, bend, break or carry impressive numbers that are easily measured, compared and improved on. I sometimes struggle to open jars, move furniture and carry grocery bags. And while I can find physical strength impressive and even admirable in other people, I don’t put much importance on any of these things for myself.
Strength, in my opinion, exists in the moments of life that test us or push us to our limits. It’s found when we least expect it and fortifies us in the face of things we think we cannot overcome. It rises up as survival against the odds and lives among moments of doubt to help us stand firm despite it all. It lies dormant until needed. It’s even found in everyday acts of defiance against our critical inner voice that gets us through the day.
For what it’s worth: it’s never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you’re proud of, and if you find you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start over again. | F. Scott Fitzgerald
Strength can be found weathering the greatest of storms and it can also be discovered in the quietest parts of ourselves. Strength can be a guttural scream powered by adrenaline or a silence that belies the power it hides. Strength can be the push you need to do something or a balm to soothe your tiredness to continue through another day. It’s the knowledge of when to let things go and move on. It’s individuality. It’s feeling the fear and doing it anyway — it’s anything and everything you need it to be.
My most negative character trait — stubbornness — as it turns out, is also my greatest source of strength. That same unwillingness to bend, which can be combative, messy and misplaced, helps me plant my feet, grit my teeth and stare down any storm coming my way. It also gives me the capacity and wholeness to wrap myself around those I love to help them through any battle they may have, and fight alongside them.
What, in your opinion, is strength?