Hope – The Fuel of Courage

Hope – The Fuel of Courage

“And one has to understand that braveness is not the absence of fear, but rather the strength to keep on going forward despite the fear.” — Paulo Coelho

Slowly, I trudge on.  Fear tries to stop me in my tracks.  When I speak of fear, it’s not panic or fright dreading something horrible.  Rather, an uneasiness that lightly gnaws at my confidence causing me to believe that perhaps I may be a little too bold to tread in a world of unknown outcomes with only hope in my backpack.

My writing has grown from the seeds of momentary epiphanies to an appreciation so great, I desire to encourage and inspire with insight.  This monumental endeavor creates small episodic heart flutters and vague insecurity.  From a past of seeking accomplishment for recognition, my concern is remaining authentic on all levels.  

Yes, we all write what we know, but some days I feel I just don’t know.

This unknowing creates a stumbling block that could potentially grow into a mountain.  It is here where I seek to encourage myself with words of resilience and put fear where it belongs, buried by hope. And so, I have reset courage and continue my journey.

– Erika K Rothwell

Hope Dances – A Note on Optimism – Day 15

Hope Dances – A Note on Optimism – Day 15

“Life has its own rhythms, we just have to learn how to dance.” – Cristian Andrei Nica

Self-expression is discovered in each individual’s dance style.  We all feel the rhythm differently, uniquely perceiving the tempo as each of our steps moves according to the way we feel it.

It’s difficult to think your way through dancing.  You must embrace and engage the music with your heart.

When you feel what you write, your words dance with the rhythm of your life.

There can be no naysayers as they look upon your heart.  When we don’t feel well with our soul, we may look upon someone else’s joy as self-serving.  Yet it is the example of a joyous heart that feeds us hope. 

Lately, I question whether I’ve become a little too optimistic.  And I realize I may have just learned to dance without worrying about what onlookers may think.  Others who have ventured before me have given me that courage.  I share openly with an audience I do not know personally, yet feel connected to on another level.

Am I offended that you may not like the way I dance?

No, I appreciate your perspective.  For it is in the differences that we connect.

I believe it is not for us to examine another’s motivation.  Optimism drives my hope that we can all learn to appreciate someone near or far who has taken the struggles that life has handed them and learned how to dance!

I look forward to continuing my journey while reading and being inspired by yours.  You make “dancing” all that much more special for me. 

-Erika K Rothwell

Hope – Waking Up to Possibilities – Day 12

Hope – Waking Up to Possibilities – Day 12

Another day, another way to embrace hope.  The spirit of motivation drives my year-long writing journey to appreciate one small word with a grateful heart.

The writing possibilities seem endless.  A year may not be long enough.

I began the journey with an acronym, “H-Help O-one P-Person E-Everyday.”  And although my focus on this venture began with a desire to look outside of myself and become a helper, my natural tendency is still to fold inward.  So I look to nature for inspiration.

As a flower reacts to an early frost by closing its petals, my protective reaction is swift.  Blooming too early can cause unstable conditions and potential damage to a flower’s petals.  However, with roots intact, early spring trustfully continues coloring the cold ground with vibrant displays of hope.  

Raw and unfiltered trust is uncommon in a world that may appear filled with pretension and self-protective cloaking.  Yet hope can drive our desire to face even a frigid environment.  As the sun shines on our well-intentioned efforts we are reminded of the warmth existing in the hearts of humankind and the path from vulnerability to love and support.  

My meditation for the day is a reminder for me and hope for others to risk blooming.  Don’t let fear of sharing your true colors or harsh conditions prevent your hopeful steps forward into unfamiliar territory.  You were born to HOPE.

-Erika K Rothwell

Waking Up to Possibilities – Read by Erika K Rothwell

Hope is a Constant – Day 11

Hope is a Constant – Day 11

I discovered an old journal today filled with random thoughts and insights, speckled with a few plans.  What was most apparent, was an ongoing theme of discovery, searching for something that I felt needed to be found.

On one of the pages, the words were written, “All progress requires change, but not all change is progress.”  Because I’m not sure where the thought originated, I cannot assume it was mine,  thus giving credit where credit is due.  However this powerful quote stands beside a random thought that did enter my mind this afternoon, “Hope is a constant through change.”

We all have goals that drive our actions, but unanticipated change can upset our direction, breaking up an established routine, sometimes even sending us into a tailspin.

Thus, we must focus on a constant.  Power beyond the moment, a strength provided from a belief that moves mountains.  This support system cannot be broken.  It is always there for us, even amidst the upheaval of uninvited change.

And as I reread my own words in that 10-year old journal, I believe I may have just found the “magical” something I was looking for back then.  

Change doesn’t always move us forward, but it doesn’t have to move us backward either.  Holding on to hope keeps us steady through the waves of the unexpected.  From this balance point, we can surely progress.

– Erika K Rothwell

Hope is a Constant – Read by Erika K Rothwell

Hope Lives in Us – Day 10

Hope Lives in Us – Day 10

I woke up day number 10 of the year 2019 to this view out my window.

Hope is a breath of fresh air.  A long deep breath I so often forget to take as I allow the shallow breaths of time starvation and self-protective adrenaline to overwhelm my day.

The meditation I focus on is “Each day has its own sufficient amount of concern”.  If I magnify the effects of carrying my baggage of worry to the next day, I exponentially escalate negativity causing a snowball effect that only hope can melt.

That glimmer of hope lives within all of us.  A bright sunbeam of faith at times only barely sensed or an internal nudge toward a positive belief.  

I am reminded, “Choose to breathe in or tune in to to the message of hope.”   Sometimes it requires a quiet moment to focus on our breath, at other times we may need to turn up the volume to drown out our negative self-talk.  

Either way, we can all light up each new day with hopeful anticipation of that great something that is about to happen, within the world of possibility, as we are granted another sunrise.

As light powerfully destroys darkness, hope breathes life into despair with its promise.

Erika K Rothwell