Inner strength. Is it something we are born with or something that we develop throughout our lives? Or is it consciousness with divine intent? Do we guide it, or does it guide, support and protect us?
So, what is inner strength?
Oddly it is intangible, we cannot measure it unless it is through our thoughts and deeds, yet we are all born with it, a primitive form of which governs our determination to survive outside our mother’s womb, our basic need for survival. Moreover, our inner strength is honed throughout our life by the many challenges we face, both good and bad, highs and lows. Life provides our experiences, but it is up to us how we respond and react to all that life throws at us, and as such, our inner strength can become governed by our environment, genetics and learned behaviours.
Personality and attitude play an essential role in all our lives. Everyone’s personality and attitude towards events differ, thus making our ability to overcome or manage any given obstacle unique. Take the pandemic we are living through today. People’s reactions are so wildly different. We have those who are willing to serve others before themselves, despite the dangers, both from infection and those whose inner strength has given way to fear and abusive actions towards societies carers. Living through the horrifying numbers of deaths, the struggle against the virus takes its toll. No one is unscathed or unaffected as inner strength can become a tower of strength or finally weaken and crumble.
But is it something more profound than our primeval desire to survive? Is it our subconscious, our life force’s way of guiding us through life? Where the conscious may grow weary, our subconscious believes in unlimited possibilities. We are divinely connected and feel both on an individual and collective level. Is it the dream to create something better, for ourselves, our families, humanity in general and the world as a whole than fuels this unconscious level, allowing individuals and groups of people to withstand hardship, torture and captivity, as they stand up for their ideals such as Mahatma Gandhi, Mala Yousafzai and Aung San Suu Kyi. Without Inner strength, these world influencers would not have been able to achieve, through peaceful means, all that they have done.
Life-changing; inner strength is the voice from within. It can give us the empowerment to leave relationships, change jobs, travel the world and better ourselves.
There is a level of contentment, consideration, calmness and patience found within someone who uses their inner strength. Just as the word strength traditionally implies, there is also a level of endurance necessary to use such restraint throughout our life. This is important to understand because our inner strength is essential to us living our dream.
If we look at the anatomy of inner strength, it’s hard to outline exactly what it entails. But it can be seen in those who embody it. These people may not be very tall or physically fit; instead, they may be slender and frail-looking. They may not look fierce but appear gentle and kind. Inner strength comes in all shapes and sizes. But what they do embody is a kind of quiet inner fortitude with which they calmly deal with whatever comes their way.
So, as stated earlier, we are born naturally with inner strength, but can it be developed at any age? Everyone is born with a certain level of tenacity or inner strength that’s innate, something that is part of us. But it is also something that can be developed; it can be cultivated within us just like a new plant can be cultivated from a seed. This is because the source of inner strength comes from our mind. The way we train our minds leads to how well we develop our inner strength, and it’s something we can do at any age.
Inner strength can take the form of compassion, kindness, silence in the face of insulting words or strong action in the face of injustice. It can also be the choice of non-violence in response to aggression.
Regardless of what form inner strength takes, the source of it is from within. It’s the inner capacity to assess a situation, observe our own thoughts and emotions as a response, and it’s the ability to respond wisely and compassionately to what we are experiencing. Inner strength is ultimately the capacity to train our minds and meaningfully harness the immense power of our mind in day to day situations.
The stages, therefore, put simply are being mindful, observing emotions, responding instead of reacting, expressing an appropriate response and from there bringing appropriate action.
The components of inner strength, therefore, show up in a certain kind of process of being and developing inner strength can be both lifesaving and can also help us to keep moving forward regardless of whatever situation we face.