Or how to practically live a word that usually only means an expectation, a desire, an intent
I’ve challenged a fellow Destonian, Tormod, to redefine the word hope, but whenever I see within myself and I realize that I also have some redefinition to do around that word then it means: I have take my own suggestion for myself as well.
I also consider it’s timely since this year is ending, and usually what we tend to wish for one another in general is ‘hoping for better times’ in the year to come as in waiting for things to get better, to have ‘the good times/future on our side’, to be fortunate, to have all the best and no more of all ‘the bad/negative’ stuff, which is also an interesting premise first to look at in terms of how hope is usually said when things are not so well, things are going wrong or bad or not having the expected results.
I had shared before how supportive it was for me to in essence adopt the words ‘Kill all hope’ as a means to let go of that usual notion of hope as this word that almost evokes this whimsical experience where one can almost envision these ‘winds of change’ coming through from somewhere, somehow, almost with this ‘magical halo’ as if something/someone will come and fix our problems, will come and save us, sort something out for us, expecting something to get better by itself, “we’ll have better luck in coming times!” the future looking like this promising illusion that is nowhere to be found ‘here’, meaning, we are precisely just staring toward the upper right space above our heads, staring at a nothingness and imagining, fantasizing, wishing and so ‘hoping’ for good things to come our way.
So what do the words ‘killing all hope’ meant to me as a starting point to precisely correct myself in my experience that I just described above and so get back to ‘here’ to my physical reality and myself? Quite simple: stopping waiting, stopping fantasizing or weaving an illusion in our heads that we project and web into the future, someday, somehow…. Out there! So I questioned, who am I existing as within this hope? And I found that I am inaction, I am disempowerment, I am fears, I am sunk in inertia, I am depression, I am positively-thinking and fantasizing only, I am abdicating my responsibility for my self-creation to god knows what or who to do something out there for me.
Upon seeing that, I realized that surely I had to let go of all hope and so instead gear myself to not ‘wait’ but act, move, direct, create, plan and walk the first steps to achieve something, to do that something I was merely existing in ‘waiting-mode’ for. So this is more of a practical approach for changing hope into words that are the reverse of inaction or waiting.
However, I did notice at the same time that I then sort of refrained myself from using the word ‘hope’ and that would mean that I can still do some work to make it ‘my own’, to redefine it in the sense of filling that word with a meaning I can live by, stand by and so share it, speak it within the context that it may be suitable for.
So here I want to nail this word down within the context of communicating with others and understanding when they use the word hope as a means or way to, for example, give themselves strength, courage and motivation to keep walking through a particular difficult situation in their lives where it is common to hear ‘let’s hope for the best’. I’ll share a particular example that I want to use as a platform to redefine this word hope for.
I’ve been recently in this situation of being aware of someone being very sick and possibly dying soon, I listened to people express hope for this person’s health to get better. I must say I did get challenged in that I thought it would not get better at all, but I’ve been proven wrong, which is great, but I also considered that as with everything, even if things can go ‘better’ for some time, once that a particular diagnosis is certain, hope can only exist ‘that far’ in terms of a person’s life, and it applies to all of us really, we all have a limited timeframe in this world and if we only ‘wait’ for something better to come our way, we will certainly waste our precious time here.
I shared above how I can now ‘fill in’ the meaning within the word hope in a way that is much more substantial than just waiting or wishing or thinking positively. Developing strength, courage, self-motivation, consistency, diligence and perseverance are great ways to live hope in a way that one can give that to oneself – in whichever measure one is able to and according to the context/situation and conditions. These words are so much more ‘here’ and empowering and able to be lived by and directed entirely by ourselves, no matter how ‘big’ or ‘small’ the tasks we are moving ourselves with, what matters is precisely having this intent, this starting point of supporting ourselves or something/someone with that vision or outcome of creating a better situation for everyone involved moment by moment, day by day.
Here also considering that once that such active support is provided for example for a person, hope applies in the sense of yes doing what is necessary to assist another, the person assisting themselves with these words that they can live for and by themselves regardless, and there comes a practical ‘waiting’ in this case, where yes there is a waiting process at the same time to see how things evolve, what works best in creating a better quality of living in such difficult situation, it’s more of a timeframe to assess, to evaluate – but definitely not a time to be ‘with arms crossed’ doing nothing – so this is also a practical way to see ‘hope’ as a practical waiting/observing of a development or unfoldment.
It also assists me in letting go of the usual image I have associated with hope which is that of ‘long faces’ as in sad faces that are ‘hoping’ for better times, like people in war that one can have as images etched in our minds of how all of them are yearning for something better, for the war to stop, hoping for the best, but many times being incapable of ‘stopping the war’ themselves – but they, as many people in war torn situations, have demonstrated that in those worst situations the better of themselves can come through and assist them to live through day by day. They do become that courage, that strength, that diligence to face their day to day even in worst case scenarios and not giving up, and that’s a key word here as well that can nurture and substantiate the word ‘hope’: not giving up, not letting oneself be blinded by emotions, but also not fall into ‘false illusions’ but being very realistic about the work to be done, the process ahead, the amount of self-work and diligence it will take to do that and so realizing that hope is not a given thing, hope doesn’t come ‘by itself,’ Hope is created as a day to day living process where each decision we make is in fact affecting and so creating our future.
This is also another dimension as well where at least in my case I tend to associate hope with this elusive ‘future time’/ a future-tense word where one is kept in ‘tension’ and so in a ‘paralyzed’ mode in the present ‘waiting’ for that future someday… but that’s exactly the kind of ‘trap’ that we have to prevent ourselves from falling into when using the word hope and instead be able to redefine it into the realization that we are creating the future every single moment, ‘we are the future’, the future is already here for us to create, because it doesn’t exist in fact ‘out there’, that’s only an illusion. All we have is the present, and so the present is an active living, an active doing and working on that which we want to change, create, redefine, align, build and direct ourselves and others towards.
Here’s another cool dimension that this opens up! Many times hope is linked to an expected outcome or result, that is mostly suiting our interests, our desires and it’s usually something good or positive in however we see or frame things. I’ll take the example of a person with a terminal illness and them waiting and hoping to get better, or their family members. So realistically, it is probably not possible for them to live much longer, but that certain outcome as death should not define ‘who they are’ in their every moment where they are still HERE, still alive, still breathing, yes with definitive problems in the functioning of their body, but there is in fact much more that we can still live of ourselves even in those worst case scenarios, and this is something that I’ve had the luck and opportunity to become recently aware of through the recordings on Eqafe from a dear friend that is sharing with us her process through Cancer, and needless to say that it has changed so much of my perception around the notion of pain and terminal illness that in a way it has assisted me to also dispel my own fears that I projected unto her and others that I see in such terminal-diseases, and realizing that there’s so much more to each one of ourselves, regardless of the physical ailments and impairments that we might or may go through in our lifetimes.
So, hope became a very convenient word to look at in relation to a process of ‘wishing someone to be well/get better’ – but in this I see that it makes much more sense to focus on a day by day basis, not to expect that ‘desired outcome’ as in ‘full recovery’ or ‘back to 100% health’ because that would be an illusion, but instead definitely focusing on living this hope as in sticking to the best aspects of ourselves, our strength, our courage, our transcendence of fears and limitations, which means actual work, a constant being and doing in every moment that we are here breathing, breathing life into life instead of giving it away to worry, fears or empty waiting modes.
I very much appreciate the work from Sunette at SOUL – School of Ultimate Living that has opened to us a myriad of possibilities to look at words and how to practically redefine them, it’s quite a gift to give to oneself once that one is ready and willing to support oneself to change in one’s day to day reality. So, this is here my sharing in honor of what I’ve learned from her and through her in the awesome videos that have been share thus far this year at SOUL. Please check them out!
If you reading this have other points open up for you in relation to hope, please share them! I’d like to read and expand more on possible aspects contained in this word ‘hope.’
And so I take these words I’ve written also to place into context the usual expectations on the new year, and how so whenever hearing or reading the word ‘hope’ one can use it as a ‘flag point’, a reminder that there are actual ‘doings’ attached to that word: it’s up to us to create it, to stand as that which we want to live by and create for ourselves. And so also here realizing that no matter how challenging, harsh and difficult situations might be –because let’s face it, that’s how reality is for the most part – we can decide who we are in those moments, and not allowing ‘the bad/the difficulties’ to define us, but rather decide who we are within ourselves while facing and walking through such moments, challenging ourselves to get past the wishful thinking mode and instead go straight into the actions that stand as solutions, as a clear determination of us deciding to live the best for ourselves and practically do it.
Thanks for reading
Recommended series that will certainly assist you in those difficult times in one’s life and health, but not limited to that either, gift yourself:
I leave the post with a picture that is used by one of my favorite bands and it happens to be that, lol, I never quite got ‘the point’ with this image until now! Throughout the years I actually found myself more like judging or reacting to the fact that they usually have this word ‘hope’ as a constant in their presentations and related images to their music. However, now that I finished this blog and have grounded myself in this redefinition of the word ‘Hope’ I can see that the hammer in this illustration can be a representation of ‘the work to do’, the actual actions to live in order to create such hope in a supportive, realistic and sustainable manner, scaring away the ‘wishful whimsical thinking’ lol.
If you’d like some support in preventing and being 1+ person that stands up for life in a practical day to day living manner, check out:
7 Year Journey To Life Process : People Sharing their Processes of Self-Forgiveness and Self-Correction
Desteni Forum : Discuss and share with us