Ebbs and Flows

Jack of Some Trades; Master of None” listed my new year’s resolutions. Originally I planned to memorize and recite one prayer monthly to nurture my spirituality. I’ve changed my mind. Reciting mantras is a more reachable goal.

Mantras help us internalize our deepest desires. We wish to develop positive thinking. I’m realizing that mantras gradually bring me back to the present moment. I’ve been using the ThinkUp app to record several mantras and listen to them on loop accompanied by a motivational instrumental track. Listening to my voice repeat positive words gives me a confidence boost. These are my favorite ones so far:

  • Progress is moving forward. My best friend Ashley repeats that one. Her words remind me that each small step in the right direction truly matters in the grand scheme of moving forward. Each time you make your bed matters. When you brave the winter winds to go for a walk, you’re making a sincere effort to better your health.
  • Stand ten feet tall, every inch a woman. My wise older friend Karyn has been reiterating that mantra for as long as I can remember. It’s a catchy one! This mantra inspires me to look inward and proudly accept that all my experiences have made me who I am today.
  • I see problems as challenges that evolve me and help me grow. The ThinkUp app provides this mantra among many others. When I succumb to a negative thought pattern, these words help me spiral upward. I return to the reality that obstacles inevitably obstruct our lives. We can choose to fight them or to embrace them.

Rummaging through my old notebooks, I found this poem I wrote in April when I needed to feel more grounded. The poem follows a 3-4-4 rhythm, reminding me of the tide’s inevitable behavior. I’m comforted by its predictable rhythm. Meant to take place on the seashore, I imagine the water traveling between my toes and returning to the ocean. The ocean’s behavior parallels the changing seasons. A rose bush ebbs in the cold months. It begs for pruning so that it can produce fresh growth in the spring. We feel ups and downs in our lives. Most importantly, we should remember that “This too shall pass.” Each moment is fleeting. My father compares this phenomenon to riding waves. When a moment uplifts us, we ride the waves. When it challenges us, we can allow the wave to pummel us or bring us higher.

Ebbs and flows

as water runs

between my toes.



grow and wilt as

petals of rose.


Passing suns

make no change in

our ebbs and flows.


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