There are people who will tell you that hope is not a strategy. And I completely understand that perspective, especially when I hear my mother’s voice in my ear saying, “Wishin’ don’t make it so” (and she would throw on her twangiest twang as she said it, too).
But hope can be a powerful, powerful thing – especially when it’s tied to a really clear vision of the future.
Have you got hopes? Could you make a list of them? A list of your dreams? Your vision of the future?
I know I can.
I hope I’m healthy into my old age.
But wishin’ don’t make it so, does it?
What do I have to do to make my hope a reality?
Feed myself nourishing foods, get moderate exercise, see the doctor from time to time, have friends, enjoy myself.
Looking at it that way, doesn’t getting older seem like a ton of fun?
I hope I’m financially secure throughout my life.
Again, wishin’ ain’t gonna fill up my bank account. So what do I need to do?
Work smart, invest well, save responsibly, spend reasonably.[I like that – especially the work smart part.]
I hope I’m always connected to engaged, happy, fun, caring people.
Well, to be connected with engaged, happy, fun, caring people, I need to make sure that I’m engaged, happy, fun and caring myself.
You never get what you aren’t willing to give, do you?
The exciting prospect is that to achieve this I get to keep learning new things, doing new things, meeting new people. I also get to be open, and vulnerable, and nurturing.
Now, that sounds like a wonderful way to live.
I hope my children are happy adults.
You know what? I’m going to take that back. Let me be more specific.
I hope my children are good partners. Good parents. Good neighbors. Good friends. I hope they find meaningful work. I hope they remain in touch with their own resilience.
I hope they find joy.
I hope they have hope.
Because hope is a vision of how the future might be.
How our lives could possibly be if we just line up square behind that hope and make it a reality.
Just like rock breaks scissors, darlings, hope squashes fear.
We hope we can, so we do.
Hope, when it’s backed up by steps toward a vision of your own creation – yes, in that case, hoping sure does make it so.
[photo credit: Michele Woodward]