March 30

Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH

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“Unity is strength… when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.” Mattie Stepanek

Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH - Sacred Lotus
Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH – Sacred Lotus
Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH - Fire Ants
Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH – Fire Ants


Unity is Strength

I love those who can smile in trouble, who can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but they whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves their conduct, will pursue their principles unto death. Leonardo da Vinci

What does strength mean to you?  What does it have to do with motivation and starting the week with a get up and go attitude?  Strength is more than our ability to work like an Ox and punch like a heavyweight champion. Strength comes in many forms and to achieve our goals in life, we need both inner and outer strength. The Sacred Lotus plant looks delicate and pretty, yet it is a tenacious, long living plant that thrives in the murkiest of waters and rises above the crap of daily existence. According a research report, the lotus can regulate the temperature of its flowers just like humans and warm-blooded animals do. “An individual lotus can live for over a thousand years and has the rare ability to revive into activity after stasis. In 1994, a seed from a sacred lotus, dated at roughly 1,300 years old ± 270 years, was successfully germinated (Wikipedia).” So this delicate plant can teach us about the power of inner strength; tenacity is strength.

Why is the tiny ant seemingly invincible? The tiny ant performs huge feats on a daily basis and it does so because it knows the power of numbers and the strength that comes from working in union to accomplish a goal. When a colony of  fire ants is accidentally encountered, they  will attack as fiercely as a lion. They are fast, with a giant bite that leaves angry lesions that hurt for days. When ants need to move a “problem” (huge piece of food), they gather together and create a chain of power. We can apply the same strategy in our lives.  We all need mentors, supporters and cheerleaders in our corner of this place we call earth. Without the support of others, our goals might remain a dream; unity is strength

“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.” Khalil Gibran

Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH - Bamboo grass
Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH – Bamboo grass


Strength – Motivational Video

“Wherever you see happy, peaceful individuals; wherever you see children endowed with noble qualities and good dispositions; wherever you see men who have immense strength when faced with failure and adverse situations; wherever you see people who possess a great measure of understanding, sympathy, love, and compassion towards the suffering, and who give of themselves to others—you will usually find a great mother who has inspired them to become what they are.” – Amma

Did you know that the Bamboo plant is a form of grass? Yes, this elegant, strong plant that spends years underground developing its roots and nurturing its armor is grass. Then one day, out of the blue, it shoots up to almost 3 feet and keeps growing. It is one of the fastest-growing plants in the world because of its unique rhizome-dependent system. “Certain species of bamboo can grow 35 inches within a 24-hour period, at a rate of 0.00003 km/h (a growth of approximately 1 millimeter (or 0.02 inches) every 2 minutes) as a tribe of flowering perennial evergreen plants in the grass family Poaceae, Bamboo has a higher compressive strength than wood, brick or concrete and a tensile strength that rivals steel (Wikipedia).” It provides much help to those who use it to build homes, containers, household furniture, and even for food. Imagine for a moment that a type of grass has such strength that it rivals steel.  It takes all that underground heavy lifting work that builds the Bamboo and trains it, until it becomes ready to show; focus/commitment is strength

What fuels a Mother’s strength? What motivates our parents and loved ones to support us? A mother’s strength is built in the fire of motherhood, in birthing and maintaining an undying love for her offspring.  Just like the Bamboo,  a mother carries her offspring, unseen, for a certain period of time. If she were in the wild, she might build a nest or dig deep into the ground or hibernate for a long or short period of time. When the time comes, she uses all of her reserve to birth life and then to nurture that life till it’s ready to venture out on its own. – A Mother’s Love is Strength. The point here is that strength manifests in different forms and through different channels. One thing they share in common is tenacity; the determination to see a plan from its genesis to the point of completion.  So the idea of building strength takes great inner reserve, preparation, focus, love and commitment. = tenacity. What are you tenacious about? What’s the difference and the impact it has had on your life?  Think about it; love is strength.

The Story of The River Goddess: Come back later for the story.
The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for March are:
03/02 – READ
03/09 – Patience
03/16 – Responsibility
03/23 – Health
03/30 – Strength

More Below!

“Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go.” Hermann Hesse

Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH - Sea Swell
Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH – Sea Swell
Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH - Atlantic Ocean
Motivation Mondays: STRENGTH – Atlantic Ocean


Embracing The World: Rebuilding the Future in the Philippines: Classrooms and Hope for Students Who Want to Be Teachers

It doesn’t take a lot of strength to hang on. It takes a lot of strength to let go.
J. C. Watts
Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.
Mahatma Gandhi

Which is stronger – Water or Fire? If you recall the Tsunami in  Japan in 2011 and the devastating Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines in 2013, you already know that the Ocean is a powerful force to contend with. On a calm day, it looks steady and still like a Zen Master and like the Atlantic Ocean picture above. However, when the ocean is roiled, it can destroy everything in its path. Some people ask the question: Which is stronger – water or fire? Think about it. Unlike the other examples shared above, water flows freely and can seep through almost anything. Over time, it destroys steel and absorbs everything into its depth. Water is powerful in many ways; we need it for sustenance, to grow food and to cleanse ourselves. Yet, in a moment’s notice, it can sweep away everything and wreck havoc in our lives; Water/energy is strength

Why is there strength in letting go? As the saying goes, still waters run deep. Why? When we take time to meditate and reflect on our inner core skills and instincts; when we dig deep within, we gradually come to the understanding that what is in us is greater than what is in front of us.  Letting go and going with the flow is also a sign of great strength because it gives us an opportunity to step back and let the energy flow. When we let go of being in control, our instincts are sharpened and clarity descends on us. That clarity helps us make clearer and calmer decisions and it doesn’t mislead us. When we let go of fighting the tides of life, we can get carried back to safe ground; Letting go is strength.

Positive Motivation Tip:  Begin by honoring the loving, caring strength that motivates you daily to get up and go.  Then honor the same in others.

Motivation Mondays is open to anyone who wishes to share a motivational quote, photo, personal challenge or a post that encourages others to start the week on an upbeat note.
Basic Instructions: Each week, I will have a motivation word to help us create a response. (See listed words for end of November and all of December below)
Email address: You may email or share your post as a comment and I will add it to the round-up of related posts. email it to: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com
Category tag: – Share your post using Motivation Mondays
Twitter hashtag: – Use this on Twitter #MotvnM
Dedicated Page: There is a dedicated page for Motivation Mondays. It has the same instructions and will include other helpful tools and a link to the round-up
Facebook Page: MotivationOnMondays Join our page and add your post and/or any motivational piece you think will be helpful to others.
Facebook Community: We have a Facebook community forum to compliment the page. It serves as another way to share uplifting posts and thoughts. Please join in and add your voice.

Badge: – I created a fun badge using PicMonkey’s free photo editing tools. You can create your own, use WordPress’ integrated tool on your blog or you are welcome to use mine. (see dedicated page)
Tag: – Motivation Mondays
Hashtag: – #MotvnM

Related Posts

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All Photos: Sacred Lotus, Bamboo grass, Atlantic Ocean, Fire ants, via Wikipedia

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet


Tags

#MotvnM, Ants, Bamboo, letting go, Motivation, Motivation Mondays, motivational stories, ocean, positive attitude, postaday, Sacred lotus, Self awareness, strength, Unity


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  • There are many forms of strength. Strength of family, strength of oneself, strength of community. They are all important. Great post.

  • When I think of strength I think of mental strength versus physical. Some people have so much on their plates to juggle.

  • You have some very deep thoughts here. I love having bamboo in my home. I actually have a lucky bamboo plant in my bathroom.

  • I especially liked what you said about strength in letting go. Sometimes letting go makes us stronger. And the story of the bamboo plant and it’s strong roots reminds me that even though we can’t see the roots and when the bamboo plant is seemingly doing nothing, those roots are growing stronger and stronger.

  • I can’t begin to tell you how much I needed to read this today. Thank you so much for sharing it! Couldn’t agree more that there is definitely strength in letting go…

  • Sometimes I feel like I don’t have the strength needed for tasks but somehow I always manage. Thanks for sharing your motivation. The next time I need strength, I’ll meditate and dig deep until I find it.

  • This is beautiful motivation. I agree that we all need mentors, supporters and cheerleaders to keep us moving forward and to help us stay on course. Strength indeed comes in many forms.

  • Strength is something I really need to work on for myself. Letting go is another one I need to work on too.

  • We can derived strength from our peers, from our loved ones, and from our faith. We need strength to survive and do things our Creator wants us to.

  • Wow thanks for sharing. I never thought of a Lotus and how its in the murky waters but is so beautiful. Its amazing that it can revive itself & regulate temperature.

  • I’m currently dealing with fire ants in my own lawn and it’s the numbers that make them impossible. Alone they’re not nearly as scary.

  • I really like your comparison of how ants have a sense of community and the benefits of it’s strength and how we could find a similair place.

  • Ants are amazing. I would most certainly agree that they have strength. I think water is stronger, A mom has many strengths and Letting go is a very hard thing to do. This is such a great post. I love all of your posts.

  • I have always been fascinated while watching little ants. What I have noticed is that no matter what struggles they are faced with they never give up. I remember once I saw one crawling up a wall with a piece of food in its mouth that was so big the ant keep losing it. No matter what he kept returning to retrieve his meal and then would attempt to crawl up the wall over and over again. Such great motivation!

  • I like that saying ‘unity is strength’. We were presented with a plaque at work for our great teamwork efforts that had this saying on it.

  • There are so many invisible examples of strength that I’ve seen all through my life. Appearances are deceiving, and it’s not until you really get to know a person that you realize just how strong they really are!

  • I couldn’t have worded it better. As always, thank you for the inspirational post!

  • Thank you for the motivation 🙂 Sometimes it’s hard and I see the beauty in everyday thanks to your posts.

  • So true, a mother’s love is as formidable as the strongest bamboo. Also, that’s a very lovely photo of the lotus. 🙂

  • Wow great info. I had no idea bamboo was a form of grass, that is cool. Am I the only one who instantly got itchy at the sight of those fire ants? Eeee!

  • Those pictures are gorgeous! I am always in the need for a little more motivation on a Monday!

  • amazing photos. i love how ants work together. they really are some of the best teamwork creatures out there.

  • This is an inspiring post. It is so amazing to watch ants move food. They use teamwork to accomplish something that would be next to impossible for one ant to do.

  • What wonderful ways of showing strength. I love the ants and the bamboo! What a great post!

  • So many wonderful examples of strength through images and quotes. That lotus is stunning. When I thing of strength, I think of mothers doing the day to day, conducting small everyday miracles.

  • Ants have always amazed. It is awesome that you were able to capture them in action.

  • This is exactly what I needed to read today, I need so much strength right now as we go through a health scare. I’m letting go of all the insignificant bickering and stresses, all I want now is serenity and peace.

  • My goodness – what a beautiful post and so enjoyed you sharing the videos – I agree life is a challenge – otherwise we’d be bored and strength is unity – Big hugs 🙂

  • Great addition to your motivation Mondays. Great quotes and pictures. Love the bamboo!

  • These are inspirational pictures indeed. They show strength in many thingsand in numbers to me anyway. Thanks for sharing the beauty of life things.

  • truly inspiring…and I love all the photos! I learned something today about the bamboo.

  • Isnt it amazing how strong tiny ants are? I used to be strong. I have had bad things happen to me and have had to push through life after years of abuse. People think this makes me strong. What makes me strong is choosing get out of bed every day.

  • This is a very motivational post! I need to work on letting go a little bit more and working with others… I tend to like doing everything myself.

  • I’ve not heard of the sacred lotus until today – it’s interesting what it symbolizes. Thought you’d like to know that the bamboo is very much attributed to the resiliency of the Filipino people because they say that like the bamboo, the Filipino spirit is indomitable that no struggle, challenge, or problem can weather this spirit.

  • It can be in various of ways.. there is so much to the meaning of strength that is for sure. Love this kind of… reminders each time.

  • What a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on strength. I have been finding my strength in my adult years, and it often comes out of admitting my areas of weakness first. Thanks!

  • United we stand. Most people want the same things for themselves and their families, it’s a shame that the differences so often divide us instead of the shared desires uniting us.

  • Great outlooks on life and ways to lead a positive life! I try to keep it positive too, though it does get tough at times. I find strength in my physical and mental capabilities knowing I am CAPABLE of making things happen. And of course I find strength in my family and friends.

  • Thank you for including that video of my home country, the Philippines. It’s heartbreaking to see what my country had gone through, but it is also heartwarming to see all those people who helped our country.

  • Ahhhhh strength!!!! Strength is so very important physically and mentally! Really enjoyed this post :):) such a great read!

  • The ant provides such a good analogy for so many things, doesn’t it? There are def. characteristics we could all do well to replicate.

  • I’ve always been amazed with fire ants, which best explain, strength in unity. They do it when they’re being attacked, when they gather food, and even during floods. As a colony, they gather as one and that they’d tend to float, more like a raft. It’s amazing. And, as simple as the ant stories usually sound, I think there are a lot of lessons that we can learn from them.

  • I was going to say how your “Love is Strength” quote reminded me of Harry Potter, where his mother’s love protected him till he’s of age. Then I see your “Letting go is strength”. It’s only then that I realized I had difficulty letting go of the past. I feel weak and small suddenly 🙁

  • I totally agree with this: “Unity is strength… when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.” One simply can’t work alone all the time.

  • Strength certainly gets us raring to go with the Monday morning blues! Such fantastic, well placed images as always. Ants are such interesting creatures – great analogy! Sim x

  • The strength of ants comes from their unity. Human can learn from this. Being a individual, I believe resilence that help a person overcome any obstacles.

  • A very well-put and motivating post. I really felt encouraged after reading and seeing how one can draw strength by just observing what nature has to offer.

  • I liked the comparison about the lotus and the bamboo. Never knew that bamboo could grow so fast in such a short time!

  • Self discipline and unity are two important things that I feel are very important to be successful in life. Thanks for sharing the inspiring bamboo story Liz.

  • Really great post. It was neat to read your propestive with the ants never looked at it that way before.

  • There’s strength in unity. I always remember how a wire can be so brittle alone but practically unbreakable when coiled together with other wires.

  • A beautiful read! When I saw the pictures of the ants, I was thinking that strength isn’t just about how strong a person is physically, but mentally. Then I had carried on reading and you have hit the nail on the head

  • I admired the cooperation and the strength ants have. They are all united—together they stand..divided they fall. But in every fall they help each other to stand up and be strong as always.

  • great message. i wish our government will start to unite and be strong esp those government officials. work together together with the whole nation

  • No man is an island, as my late father keeps reminding us. And true indeed, even on the dance floor , it takes two to Tango. That said, I believe having one by your side, just her mere presence gives you strength.

  • Lotus is really one of the most elegant flowers in the world. Your photo shows it in a different angle, so beautiful. For these plants like lotus and bamboo to symbolize strength and resiliency is so apt. I admire your courage to even go near fire ants to take their photo!- Fred

  • For me strength is the power to surmount the obstacles and endure the hardships without giving up. Be like a willow-bend but do not break. Nothing can break me down. I’ve gone through so much and I am ready to go through the next challenge in life. I am stronger now.

  • i had seen that video before in class. awesome post. your posts always inspire me. keep writing.

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