How do you define what is a good day? Or what makes a good year? Is life any perfect?  Challenges give and take us through journeys to discover, uncover and recover.

“2019 was a new start and 2020 is the time to realize the visions and dreams that have been planted, watered and waiting to burst out from the earth. If you haven’t started, it’s not too late. 2020 awaits your decision. What will it be? Will you start?”

Those were the closing words to my Time for the Eagle to Rise article on January 16, 2020.

Time for the Eagle to Rise

It’s been dormant inside,
steering in your eyes
seeing all that could be
wanting to be free
waiting in anticipation
bursting with expectation
longing to shine
spreading to fly
It is time for the eagle to Rise.

O. Stephen Peart. 2020 © All rights reserved.

At the start of the year, I did a quick inventory of what I was able to achieve in 2019. This was important to help me recognize where I was and the next steps for the eagle to fly. When you get to this point, then irrespective of what challenges, you will get through it.

When we were hit with the global pandemic, I made the decision to allow the eagle to rise. Yes, there were many setbacks, obstacles and challenges.  However, it made me realize that they give and take us through the opportunity to be creative and driven. So what did I learn from going through a year some have written off? Here are three (3) things that guided me in 2020.

Discover
Restrictions are what they are. However, they give you a chance to get out of your box and find a part of you that was always there. That comes when you challenge yourself:

Publish a Book in 30 Days.
It’s been over ten (10) years since I published my first book. While I write daily, I need to challenge myself yet again. So I set out to publishing a book in 90 days. This I achieved by writing in 30 days. The editing process then took another 30 days and finally wrapping up the final product in 30 days.

Lead a Team with Objectives Key Results (OKRs)
I’ve held a number of roles in various organizations. However, never had a desire to lead as the President of an organization. With a little prodding, I decided to take the leap. However, how was I going to lead the team? Leading a team is best done by example. This was my starting point, then from there I established my OKRs. With that I was then able to guide my team with their own and from there we delivered by earning President Club Distinguished.

Writing with Others
After completing a course in the Amherst Writers & Artists (AWA), I’ve moved beyond writing and helping others to write as well. This part of the journey has been more rewarding.

Learning in Exploration
Making new connections was part of the growth process. In doing that, I embarked on not just a new connection but also through that connection learning. I enjoy tackling social issues, but this one was an awakening.
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) an issue that impacts many a family for a lifetime. Discovering this was a highlight of my learning this year. Yet the continuous path of learning continues to be the core of Writing, Reading and Speaking.

Uncover
Sometimes silence awakens what has always been there. We just have not been listening.  2020 was a year of collision, lots of confusion and very little correspondence.  However, amidst all that, it was a year that uncovered some voices that for years have been ignored and silenced. It was a year to seek the truth and continue to search for answers. It was a year that allowed us to see ourselves differently and called on humanity to acknowledge the ugly face of hatred.

There is always a need to uncover the mask that we often place over our lives so that we can breathe again. Humanity is crying out for truth, honesty and purpose.

Recover
Challenges also allows us to recover from moments of lost. Many did not make it through 2020 but you did. The mere fact that you are here is an opportunity to finding renewed strength to keep moving forward.

He who has a why to live can bear almost any how.
– Friedrich Nietzsche

For 2021, your journey will be better. However that choice is yours to discover, uncover and recover.

#startingoverisNOTimpossible

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About the Author
O. Stephen Peart is the author of Released Expressions: the journey begins, a sequence of inspirational poetry on perspective and life. He’s inspired by the stories of life and others and shares those in his articles such as Before I Jump. His desire to bridge ideas, perspectives, and thoughts by connecting people, their stories into a conversation that enhances our awareness of ourselves and each other is the heart of Released Expressions.

Between writing and his day job, he seeks to inspire his two daughters. He will often escape into his indoor garden our out exploring for Geocaches while listening to the land and skyscape with his camera. You can learn more at www.releasedexpressions.com.

10 thoughts on “A Challenge Gives and Takes Us

  1. Brilliantly written Stephen, excellent reflection of 2020. We continue to move forward applying what we learnt in 2020.

  2. With so many words of 2020 doom and gloom, it’s refreshing to see last year through the eyes of accomplishment and triumph. When you have lemons… we all know the saying. You’ve marched through last year and achieved excellence regardless of the obstacles.. take a bow, and continue to inspire.

    1. Thank you for your forthright and forward receiving sentiment. Yes, looking pass the doom and aspiring to bloom. Let the eagle rise. It was a pleasure meeting you in 2020.
      #1T518

  3. ” What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger”. 2020 certainly proved that fact. Not only were we forced to look within, but it also opened our eyes to numerous opportunities that we previously overlooked. Glad you achieved all your goals!

  4. Another brilliant piece. Love the analogy of the eagle. I applaud you Steven. I admire you for your perseverance. Quite encouraging.

    The sky is your limit keep soaring.

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