This video is constantly my inspiration when it comes to talking about Africa, particularly.
I’m not sure why I never came across this piece in my English Literature days of high school, but someone on Twitter mentioned this the other day and I looked the poem up. It’s apt and appropriate for me at this time in my life, especially in the face of a recent job rejection email. But I am relentless and uninterested in allowing rejection to deter me from moving forward and finding success in my budding career.
Allow this inspire you this Monday!
Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Strive to be happy.
© Max Ehrmann 1927
Just re-read the words: at the moment of commitment …at the exact moment that you are 110% committed to something …the universe (or God, insert what you believe in) conspires to ensure your success. Conspires. What force behind that word! Here’s a dictionary definition:
con*spire verb (used without object)
1 | to agree together, especially secretly, to do something wrong, evil, or illegal: they conspired to kill the king
2 | to act or work together toward the same result or goal
con*spire verb (used with object)
3 | to plot (something wrong, evil, or illegal)
While the word conspire has a generally negative connotation, the beauty of language (poetic justice!) allows you to weave the traditionally negative to describe the severity to which the positive must occur. Lovely! And further, your success is ensured. Not suggested. Not recommended. Ensured. There is no question that the goal with be met. It’s done – ensured.
There are few other quotes as powerful as this that I turn to when navigating this life. This is also why I write. The manipulation of words can be so moving and so powerful and so striking. This is furthermore why I don’t believe people when they claim that words are just …words. That words mean nothing is just erroneous, at best.
I hope this quote inspires you as much as it keeps inspiring me.
I’m over-committing myself. I know. But October is already making me feel larger than life and I’m embracing this month! Personal challenge numero duo: a writing challenge. I always ALWAYS suck at this. I wind up writing for about a week, but then abandon the project after day 5. So I won’t beat myself up too much, but I’ll commit to writing something. Join me? Here are the rules of engagement and the creator of this challenge (here!)