What does it actually mean to prosper? If you start with the definition, you will read words like thrive, flourish, flower, bloom, blossom, burgeon, grow vigorously, expand, spread, improve, succeed, advance, get on in the world, go up in the world, arrive, fly high, make one’s mark, or become rich.
With those words, I not only want to prosper, I crave prospering.
The promise exists…with hope, we will prosper. We want to make it in this world. Whatever our personal goals or wishes for achievement are, we hope to reach them.
What we so often forget to consider is our current place and how we have already prospered. The riches are too great to count when we focus on what we possess outside of what money can buy. I once read, “If you want to find out how rich you are, count how many things you have in your life that money can’t buy.”
We all know the fleeting promises of material goods. The next best technology item brings us a momentary thrill until we move on to what really matters…the treasures of life as they surround us.
As I sit and consider the differences between the words used to define one word, I am moved by the power of subjectivity.
The hand of hope is at work in my life. I reach for the familiarity of its grasp and realize the promise is real. The “riches” surrounding me are too great to count, yet I know there is more in store in a future beyond what I see today.
Living in the moment does not prevent us from hoping. Appreciating the now only lays the groundwork for tomorrow. When we believe we can grow, expand, and improve there is always hope. It is in that very same hope, we prosper.
“Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows.” Native American Proverb
Doing nothing, sitting still, yet still listening.
The deafening sound of silence could drive some mad, and yet to others it is the foundation of reconstruction.In the quiet, you may actually hear the humming of your brain.
There are times, I just sit mesmerized while allowing my eyes to scour the room stopping at each window to gaze upon a color fusion filtering through the panes. The subtle background noises blend into a cohesive white noise below volume one qualifying a nearly silent state.
And here is where the peaceful calm washes over my overexertion of the day.As I sit in the space of uninterrupted quiet, I find the time to hear what matters.Lessons of the heart actively yearning to find me receptive, untethered by the bustling activities of motion bound by the restrictions of time.
What I need to learn is not always what I want to hear.Yet, I acquiesce to the silent message as it finds a path directly to my heart.
At that moment when a search for explanations begins, the untainted silence is shattered.
“Come on Eleanor, you can do it!”, she emphatically told herself out loud, struggling to open her newest prize in the back seat of the car while I was driving.I smiled from ear to ear.She’s only four years old, yet she presented a powerful message with her example of persistence, cheering herself on, as her own best advocate.
Lately, I’ve been feeling somewhat overwhelmed with all the things calling for my attention.With that, disorganized thoughts and actions often follow.Of course, there is always the list strategy.Herein lies the problem with my latest lists; they are black holes.No sooner do I check a box, another box grows from that same box.
My approach to life’s “to do” list most certainly cannot be referred to as methodical.In fact, I have been known to veer from one realm to another without any given notice.This is what my husband refers to as my bubble strategy.Actually, he just uses the word, “bubbles…” with an affectionate smirk and a long pause at the end to describe my style.
So, you guessed right, my writing is on the list.And it is not getting much attention lately.It seems to be the easiest and most forgiving box to ignore, regularly getting shifted to a lower priority.I am quite saddened by the admission.
Negative talk has been reaching a loud chatter in my mind, for this reason, morphing into procrastination.Though, all along, there has been a whisper imploring me to just sit down and write.
After a few weeks of stalemate, the words finally are emerging in rough blobs of thought.Discouragement stands in my way.The creative work I believed I could accomplish effortlessly infused with passion begins to elude me.The beauty of raw feeling appears to be stifled by the burden of a daily task list.The irony of the black and white words I’m able to write stares at me, paralleling the non-emotional characteristics of a task list.
And I realize, I’ve been here before.I spent years reigniting my creative lifeline, after snuffing it out with the burden of self-imposed secular aspirations, and financial obligations.I found hope in my desire to share my experience of reconnection to my artistic self, with others, through my writing.And this is when the healing happened.I’m reminded, feel first…words will inherently follow.
If you have ever felt like this, you need encouraging reminders as I do.Where can it be found?
Observing the simple examples of young children can teach us the greatest lessons.The struggle to accomplish begins soon after our entrance into this world.Those who love and support us can help along the journey, but it is self-motivation and self-advocation that fuels our drive.And as usual in my life, out of the mouth of a babe, my little granddaughter modeled the positivity I needed to emulate.
Think how much more we could accomplish if we simply replaced our negative self-talk with self-encouraging words.
It sounds rather elementary, but recall how many times, lately, you have actually championed yourself with the three little words, “You can do it!”
-Erika K Rothwell
P.S. For those of you who believe in serendipity, I published this post and celebrated by boiling a cup of tea. The tea bag quote read, “Happiness is an accomplishment.”
I haven’t written in a while.I must admit self-seeking endeavors came between me and you.Life continues to provide me with powerful excuses to distract me from the matter at hand.
Yet it keeps gnawing at me, daily, the abyss of thoughts intertwined with feelings attempting to escape as a word canvas, wherein the artwork can be rendered.
The selfish part of me wants full attention to my words, and it is at this moment I recognize that I rarely give my full attention to any outside thing.My art craves an outward positive glance and even a simple like.The lesson stares me in the face, “to be liked, you must like first.”
I wrote something for you today, but the reality slapped me in the face, you are busy.Busy like me.You struggle to rise to daily challenges, and there is no time left for a meandering review.
Gifts exist in the name of time.And so few of us have the luxury of having any left to give.
My post is short.It was written just to let you know I’m still here.
An event arises in my life as a lesson in resilience. Although it may seem like a small setback for some people, in my world, I saw it as tragic. The words I so lovingly inscribed on the computer screen with hours of painstaking editorial creation disappeared in a flash, in an electrical surge that lasted less than ten seconds.
The devastation cannot be described in a grammatically correct format. My poetic soul was reawakened with an intense raw pain. My newly formed art form had disappeared before it could even be introduced to this world. I searched for it for hours until I had nothing left but to helplessly admit it was gone forever.
Tears fell as torrents of hopeless waves shattered my calm satisfaction felt only after a good work is finished. Circumstances beyond my control had obliterated my work.
What can I learn from this unfortunate disaster? Best laid plans…No matter how hard you work, you will face futility in the face.
And it is here in this hopeless moment I recognize, in order to help others, you must learn how to help yourself. In order to learn how to help yourself, you must focus on helping others. Circles, unending connections that take us back to the beginning of the cycle, in everything we do.
This depth of reasoning is pouring out from my exhalations of surrender. My body shakes with sadness, and I feel foolishly revived.
The words keep replaying in my head, “attitudes of gratitude.” How do you find gratitude in a moment of dissolution? Why must we fall down to get up?
We all follow the same pattern of growth as we are unwittingly thrust into this world, forced to take the next step of humanness. And we start with one deep breath of oxygen, a chemical composition foreign to our tiny little lungs, yet so powerful that it sustains our life on this planet, for close to a century, among all the other humans that began their life the very same way. Who can control that mighty power?
The same power reminds me sternly and daily that I am ultimately not the one in control. Trusting myself as the guide and the only guide leads to a false sense of security. The rug of uncontrolled circumstances can be ripped out from underneath me at any given moment. So where is the encouragement? I will turn the table for you.
Growth, change, and resiliency have much in common. We physically grow and change often without our initial determination and yet great resiliency is required on our part at times. Babies grow stronger and advance from crawling to walking, and we’ve all watched the tedious process of falling to get back up. Teenagers mature and are faced with hormonal challenges that knock them back to toddlerhood to work through the adaptation to adulthood. The silent growth often goes unobserved, yet a process we undergo throughout our lives, requiring the greatest resiliency.
Because we don’t often volunteer for the hard lessons, outside circumstances force their way into our lives requiring mandatory submission. Our choice remains to choose resilience and change our attitude to gratitude.
The lesson of assigning too much importance to my own abilities, recognizing the wondrous source of my creative and curious mind, and surrendering to fateful circumstances rounds out my repertoire this past week.
The gifts of my soul are granted to me to share with you. Messages originating from my heart connect the dots. The message I lost was a good one, but I see now it clearly was missing the point. I spent hours crafting a message on intuitive guidance, focused on self-driven ambitions, rather than maintaining a trustful reliance on the direction of a great and almighty force, who guides my steps and makes them sure.
May you also find your way through the powerful surges of unexpected events by relying on, whomever you believe to be, the force of greatness.
Lifting my eyes up from staring at the floor in defeat, has brought me to you today.
-Erika K Rothwell
“When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal.”