Strength. What does it mean to be strong? What does strength mean to you? Where does strength come from? This is what I want you to think about today. What comes to your mind when you think of the word strength?
When we Google the word strength, it is defined as:
the quality or state of being physically strong.
the capacity of an object or substance to withstand great force or pressure.
Google also provides similar words. Some of those include power, muscle, muscularity, sturdiness, robustness, toughness, vigor, force, might.
Many of us think of physical strength when we see or hear this word. We think of a strong man or woman who can lift heavy weights, right? In fact, that’s the first definition.
How do you get “strength” like this? One might say you could lift weights to gain strength. You exercise. Yes, physically those things would be ways to get physical strength. But when I think of strength, it is significantly more than physical. Look at some of the words associated with the first meaning: “power,” “robustness,” “toughness,” “might.” Those words have a deeper meaning for me.
Power … how to do you receive power? Power comes from within. It doesn’t come from lifting a weight. Power is a force. Force causes power. Neither does robustness come from lifting a weight. Robustness is “the ability to withstand or overcome adverse conditions or rigorous testing.” In order to gain this ability to withstand or overcome, you have to go through experiences to receive this ability … you have to be “tested.”
In bodybuilding, we physically push our muscles past the point of our limitations to basically tear and break our muscles down so they can rebuild and grow back stronger so that we can grow more, lift more, and grow some more.
The same goes for inner strength…which is what I want to focus on. We have to be “tested” in order to gain the ability to withstand and overcome. In life, don’t we all have moments that test us?
When I look back at my past, so many things tore me down mentally. There were moments I never thought I would get through. But I did. And those moments helped me find my strength. I overcame those moments. Those moments gave me the ability to rebuild myself so that when something new hit my life, I would be able to withstand the blow and overcome that, too. Those moments made me tough.
What about you? Can you think of moments in your life when you thought you would never get through? When I am training a client and putting them through a very vigorous and tough workout, many tell me after the workout that they didn’t know they could do it, and my response is, “But did you die?” I push them past the limitations that they put on themselves so they can see that they have more strength than they realize. The same goes for things we go through in life. Moments we think we cannot possibly live through. We do it. We survive, and we don’t die. It’s actually an ability that we gained through that trial. That, my friend, is power. That is strength.
Have you ever looked at the trials of someone you know and said, “Wow! That is a strong woman to be able to handle this…I would never be able to handle that the way she is.”? That is how I want you to look at yourself. Today, take a moment just to reflect. Reflect on trials you have faced and instead of thinking about how it broke you or tore you down, focus on what you gained through that trial. Be thankful for the trial, because you gained power, robustness, and might through it. You gained strength that no one else gained. Strength that was meant for only YOU to gain. This is where physical strength meets inner strength. Find the strength within you today.
As seen in Modern Grace Magazine