Strength is one of the most highly held virtues in life. We look up to people who are physically or mentally strong or both.
I wrote about the importance of being strong and how people are looked at with strength in the post on courage. One definition of courage is strength in the face of pain or grief.
How do we truly measure the strength of emotion though? It’s far more difficult to measure emotional strength than physical strength. The world’s strongest man physically has often been measured as the weightlifting champion in the Olympics.
As I discussed in the post on courage, a friend of mine posted an article about that people with mental illness are not mentally weak. I posed the question to her: What is the true definition of someone being mentally strong and mentally weak?”
She’s in school to become a therapist and gave a very poignant response:
“As with most things in social science that cannot be defined absolutely.” This is also true with courage. It’s a subjective observation and one that cannot be answered universally. “
Strength emotionally and physically are both important. We use both every day. We might be strong without even realizing it. We use physical strength for small things like getting out of bed and lifting a shampoo bottle to get ready in the morning.
We then have the emotional strength to face whatever our day will be filled with. When we go through adversity we are told we need to be strong for our….children….spouse….employees etc. Are we the ones being strong or are we drawing strength from those we lead? Idea
Are we the ones being strong or are we drawing strength from those we lead? Ideally, we draw strength from each other. We should all be grateful when we have others we are able to draw strength from. The important thing is to have support not where it comes from.
I’ve often reflected on my own strength. In many ways, I don’t give myself enough credit and in others, I wish I had been stronger. Losing custody of my children zapped a lot of my strength. I was strong for them and they for me for 44 months. Losing them and having my skills as a parent questioned and looked at negatively was devastating.
I am grateful that I have people who are helping me to regain strength. It’s a process we all go through in life. Some people go through more than others. Looking inward and realizing our strength an important part of examining our own self-worth. It’s all a part of the growth we growth we do as human beings.