**I originally posted this April 21, 2012.


“Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world right in the eye.”

– Helen Keller

“I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death.”

-Thomas Paine

“Few men during their lifetime come anywhere near exhausting the resources dwelling within them. There are deep wells of strength that are never used.”

-Richard E. Byrd

Have you noticed that some of the hardest things in life to define are the ones that take true experience and tests before you can ever really define them? Strength, according to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, is the quality or state of being strong: capacity for exertion or endurance. The first part is obvious, strength is how strong you are. However, I am more interested in the second part of that definition. “Capacity for exertion or endurance.” Well, how do we know what our capacity is? That is the sneaky part. You don’t know what your capacity for endurance is until you have been tested. Every day of our lives life throws problems, situations, people, etc…in our path to test our strength, our endurance. If you thought life was just going to be a fun ride, boy you were wrong. Life takes work and life likes to test the hell out of you.

Be Strong. Never Give Up. Keep Your Chin Up. Stay Positive.

We have all heard these words before from friends, family, and even acquaintances. But the question is, how strong are you? How strong am I? I often ask myself…do I have the strength? Do people look at me and think wow she’s strong? Do I lead by example? When is the moment you know? I do know that I get some of my strength from the people I love, my family and friends. However, it’s that moment when others would understand if you gave up and they wouldn’t fault you for it. It’s that last little push before you cross the finish line. That moment when you dig down deep in your heart, in your soul, and muster up that last little ray of hope when you thought there was none. That’s the moment. That’s the moment when you truly know you are strong. That’s the moment you have passed the test. YOU ARE STRONG. I AM STRONG.


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