“Hero” (2013) | Book Review (Sep. 2020)


Chosen Book:

“Hero” (2013) by Rhonda Byrne

Part of “The Secret” series. 


Trigger Warnings:

None!


Themes:

Hero, “the hero’s journey”, maps, guidance, inspiration, compass, advocacy, stories, aspirations, advice, worldwide, global, dreams, belief, how to get there, perseverance, pursuit, visualization, hope, graphic design, art, expectations, potential, encouragement, success, self-worth, self-esteem.


General Layout/Information Delivery:

This book is uniquely defined in a way that I haven’t seen any other book do before. This book follows twelve incredible human beings and their successes in businesses and life and finding meaning in their struggles along with advice for the reader to understand and grapple with, to become inspired and searching for their own dream either locked away or uncovered again from within their soul. The book has this beautiful aged paper look to it and it communicates wisdom and power just by the look of it, let alone the words of hope and help that are bound into it to begin with. Each “hero” is determined by a relating graphic design that appears beside their name as they add in quotes or sharing their own lived experiences about various parts of the “hero’s journey”. The separate but continued parts of the story are comprised of hotly orange, yellow and red landscapes and each chapter has the title at the right with the introduction to the chapter below in text and to the left, the area of the map and title with a red flag to mark where the hero is upon their journey. There are trees, mountains and often bodies of water. It makes for a book interactive and intuitive along with being aesthetically pleasing and inspiring.

I also happened to find the art not too overwhelming or distracting and I really quite appreciated that notion. 🙂


Summary:

Following the advice and wisdom of every hero’s journey along with Rhonda’s interpretations and spirit through each page and paragraph, comes alive a book about dreams and making them a reality that I have not encountered before in my life. It wasn’t without issues, of course, because at the beginning of this book I felt their notions of optimism and faith to be forced and pretentious in some respects, I found it to be a little annoying and seemed like it was trying too hard to be uplifting and inspiring without putting in the work yet to show me that it was uplifting and inspiring. I’m glad I stuck it out though because eventually I fell in love with the book and I’m grateful to have read it and have the opportunity to properly review it on here. ❤ 🙂

Additionally, “The Secret” is a widely acclaimed international film that made strides and leaps in bounds in hundreds of ways. Although I would have liked some type of explanation to what the film was, what it was about, even just a small blurb about it, we never get that from this book. There is apparently a book about the film out in existence as well as two other books in the series. Personally, this is the FIRST time I’ve ever come across this information so I have purely NO opinion or formulated thought about this series, the books or the film and I would have appreciated some introduction or blurb about anything on the material, but alas, I never received this. It does make me wary and also grateful that I can go forwards into this topic further without preconceived notions or judgments. 🙂

Overall this is a great book to read if you’re looking for inspiration and wisdom and guidance based on other people’s successes and how they made their dreams come alive like never before. The book really doesn’t cover any triggers so it’s safe in that respect, as well! I think a lot of people could get an excellent benefit from this book if they took the time to read it. 🙂

Keep reading this review to check out my thoughts on this book and how I interacted with it as well as some pieces I thought could have been better defined or explored.


Book Length:

227 pages


Recommendation Score:

4/5

accomplished dreams


Outstanding Quotes with My Commentary:

  1. “You might think ‘I’ve got time to follow my dreams.’ You don’t have time. Life is short. The current life expectancy is more or less 24,869 days. You do not have time to put off your dreams” — Byrne, 2013, p. 31

I found this quote to be particularly: necessary, anxiety provoking, important, true, crucial and terrifying. :O

2. “Realizing that no one else is going to make your dreams come true is a big step. Your boss, friends, partner, family cannot live your life for you. You are responsible for creating a life that makes you happy and fulfilled” — Byrne, 2013, p. 32

I really felt this quote and it reminds me once again how other people can’t exactly write a story or a fanfic in the same avenue that I am–not to say I’m particularly unique but that the plot, the way it happens, the details there, come from my head and while they can be influenced by my life and others, no one can replicate it in the exact same way that I do. So, if I passed on before I could get everything I wanted out in the world, people left behind could try and piece it together but it would never be quite “me”, you know? No one can live my life for me besides me. No one can make my dreams come true besides me. I have to live and live the way I know how. The rest will come into play later. ❤ 🙂 I definitely find quite a bit of truth and wisdom in this quote.

3. “We can’t take material things with us [when we pass on] because they are not who we are; while they are part of the joy of living on earth, they are not the purpose of our life” — Byrne, 2013, p. 37

I thought this was an incredible, poignant and resounding quote to read. Just, wow. I think a lot of us could use this reminder in our lives. I love the notion of it, and it reminds me of estate sales and yard sales even, because when we do pass on from this world into the next–whatever that may be–none of our personal belongings or ties to this world will go with us, not exactly. Certainly not physical items, some things like relationships will carry on but likely they won’t follow with us exactly. It’s fascinating, really.

4. CONTEXT: On p. 45 Byrne asks the reader to take a moment to listen to their subconsciousness, to find an inkling of an idea of what their dream is and what action step they can take towards completing their dream. She asks questions like ‘What is my purpose in life?’, ‘What am I meant to do?’ and ‘What is my reason for being here?’ She suggests to notice anything that arrives and says that the answer will come (from the Universal Mind) while we’re busy doing something else and try not to judge it or ignore it. Mine? Here:

“I am an inspiration not because I am flawless but because I am flawed.”

5. “It often takes courage to do the thing you love and go against the majority. Resist the temptation to try and please anyone and be true to yourself. It’s not your job to please anybody else, anyway; it’s their job to please themselves and find their own happiness. This is your life and you must follow your own heart” — Byrne, 2013, p. 60

I thought this was such a beautiful paragraph that needed to be seen by everyone’s eyes who reads this review. It’s so true and so well said. Again, it’s a wonderful reminder. We are not responsible for the actions of others or their reactions, only they are. And remember, not everyone is going to like you or approve of you, and that’s okay!! ❤

6. “Believing in yourself doesn’t mean there won’t be moments where you question your ability to achieve your dream….you can only take one step at a time on the Hero’s Journey and one step at a time is all that every successful person took” — Byrne, 2013, p. 74

I felt this was particularly important to note and if the journey at length becomes overwhelming, just break it down into the smaller pieces because everything has smaller pieces and it’ll be easier to carry that load than the entire tree. One log at a time. ❤

7. “The energy you put into the world comes back. In other words, the fruit is in the seed. You can’t sow an apple seed and expect to get an avocado tree. The consequences of your life are sown in what you do and how you behave” — Tom Shadyac p. 118

I really, really liked this and it has inspired me to do more art shares on my social media platforms and get back into doing that because I used to do it a lot before so yeah. Yay, inspiration! If I do it for online like with Twitter I can actually use some hashtags ahaha.

On top of this, the intention isn’t to put good out to get good back rather it’s to feel good about giving out good and being happy and fulfilled in that exercise.

8. “In fact, there are no walls (for your dream); there is only the appearance of walls. There are no dead ends; there is only the appearance of dead ends. Both are actually only detours for the purpose of redirecting you to that greater version of your dream” — Byrne, 2013, p. 141

I thought this was an excellent thing to be reminded of. That sometimes the roadblocks we face in the pursuit of our dreams really are ways the Universe is working for us to see the other side in a different way than what we may have imagined and maybe this new way could be even better and greater for us than what limited view we had from our own perspective (Byrne, paraphrased). It also made me think that I may try and get my memoir compiled and done within one and two years. As well as work towards more of the TEDtalk I’d like to give, my recovery projects, books and artwork. 🙂

9. (Liz Murray) “Every time something got in my way, what if it was just another hurdle? Because a hurdle’s not separate from the track; a hurdle is a part of the track, and it wouldn’t be an indication that I was off my track. When things were in the way that was just part of the course and eventually if I jumped those hurdles enough I would reach my finish line” — p. 163

I really, really, really LOVED this metaphor. So good and so easy to visualize and have such a fresh new perspective on obstacles and adversity in this way. 🙂 I really want to continue checking out Liz’s work trampolined from this book: she’s an author, has a movie about her journey and she’s a motivational speaker, which is really up my alley! Can’t wait to check her out. 😀

10. “(Liz Murray) [This woman] told me, ‘I can’t do much, but I can do that’ and if everybody on this planet would get that lesson–I can’t do much but I can do that…I learned that you can help other people in small ways that are available to you right this second” — p. 171

I love this!! It’s so profound and such a wonderful glimpse into a person’s life and what they wanted to do to help make a positive impact in the world (or in someone’s world; the woman wanted to do Liz’s laundry). It definitely made me think of the articles I wrote for the paper and one of my friends dealing with homelessness. I hope that she’s okay!! ❤

11. “(Peter Foyo) Some people say, ‘Why do you still work?’ and I say, ‘Because I’m making a difference and I’d like to continue to do that while I’m here.'” — p. 191

Straight up in love with this. What a perfect answer to an interesting question and so deep and profound at that, too!! It’s honestly so beautiful. *_*

12. “(Laird Hamilton) I only wish to figure out how to do more and make a bigger difference, and as I continue in that direction I think I may realize, at the end, that my goal was more to make a difference than it was all the other things” — Byrne, 2013, p. 204

I just thought this was breathtakingly beautiful. I’m not sure if it still is out of context but it was a great juncture to make at this point in the book.


Wandering Thoughts or Ideas I had While Reading:

  • How much do cruel comments about another person’s potential successes or failures wind up making or breaking an individual and what they can go out and do in the world? Can these remarks be unintentionally inspiring? Even if their intention was to hurt and put down–what defines whether a person will rise to the challenge or give in, give up and never try?
  • On the notion that how you were raised or the “circumstances of your beginnings” don’t dictate the life you lead made me wonder how much this is true for cases of trauma? Abuse? Neglect? Having finished the book I suppose it makes sense that one can aspire and become greater than those circumstances and at the same time it may be important to recognize the very reality that some people won’t. But that that power is up to the individual’s choices themselves. (Paraphrased, Byrne, p. 16).
  • I did find it frustrating that I was never told plain and simply what “The Secret” film/book/other books were about or what they even meant. Also, I was reminded early on about “Ashes” by Celine Dion in the film “Deadpool 2” (a film review that I could do very well in setting aside time to address and upload for myself and you all just the same; p. 18). :3
  • On the notion about how your hobbies are clues into what you’re most passionate about, what you make time for and that they can even be avenues for you to explore to make money out of: came the idea and reminder for myself to work on my fanfics synopses and place these and the dates they were created into my memoir. Of course, since then I uncovered a rule about them on FFN that clearly states to not use song lyrics in stories (how I missed that I’ll never truly know) which will be a difficult roadblock for my memoir, but I hope that I’ll figure it out or one day with an editor I can have my uncertainties answered properly. For now, it’d be nice to work on it again, I actually thought of it today, the last day of Sept 2020 but yeah. Haven’t quite made it there yet again but it’s on my mind. ❤ (Reference to paraphrasing: p. 20, Byrne, 2013).
  • From the section on receiving the call to my dream I was able to link and uncover the fact that reading GIAJ got me to make a Disney+ membership, YAWI (you haven’t seen this yet) inspired me to title my memoir “SOAR” and begin to work on it and this book, H, well, I haven’t completed figured it out just yet. But I was approached by someone on Twitter along the same time as I got my memoir title idea that prompted me to think about writing my book so there’s that. I think this book, H, helped to redefine goals and motivation and inspiration and structuring for myself, at least, from what I can remember! I’ll have to see at the very end of this review if there were any other lingering factors. 😀  
  • At one point of reading this book I thought of Chadwick Boseman and his passing and hoping that he, himself, had led a fulfilling life and was happy. It’s so sad to have lost him. And it was wonderful to have him for a while. ❤ </3
  • Being around books, reading books, ingesting books and watching movies really lights up my world. I’m drawn to books so much even if it’s more difficult these days to read, still I crave them. I find them hard to let go of, too. I also find photography helps me to pass the time by fast… which actually reminds me, I need to do some tracking tonight!! Art in general also serves that function. It’s what I’m most passionate about and I’m really glad I have that as one of my main outlets. In so many mediums, too!! 😀

 

  • p. 47 talking about the Universal Mind and asking it for questions or advice reminds me of my Thinking Rock out in my backyard that I would refer to for instructions and guidance to any problem I was having. It was a large oval rock by a beautiful tree and I would feel the coolness of the rock against my clothing and the mossy bits here and there. I’d sit saddling it and close my eyes, looking up at the tree’s leaves, imaging what life was like when the dinosaurs existed and pretending this big rock was a dinosaur egg. Those were good times. 🙂
  • From tips about how to ask for advice or guidance from people who’ve made their own dreams come true I thought of how: 1. getting help and advice from others mattered, 2. getting inspiration from others and 3. immersing myself in reading and writing helps, too. (Particularly in regards to being a published author, of course!)
  • I really want to work some day soon on mind mapping in my planner, setting aside and brainstorming monthly SMART goals in said planner as well as creating a cool and awesome mini vision board in my memoir’s journal 😀 Hopefully some day soon!!
  • I’ve definitely fallen into the trap of not putting in as much effort and work and time into the things I enjoy yet still expecting to be hitting it big regardless. So, as of  p. 50 I need to work on this and work on interacting more online and blogging and such and doing more than the stationary level I’ve reached as of the last few years. 😛 I suppose all in due time.
  • I don’t know how much my dreams involve popularity versus community but it’s definitely something I’ve been searching for for a while, once again reminding me I have to put in the effort myself to network and boost myself while also supporting others in their journeys and such. I’d like to do more shout-out posts and things to that nature to help with this. Maybe October will be a good month to start with! (Again though, I need to track tonight and fill in my planner a bit with these goals and ideas!)
  • The idea of navigating and expanding on daily blissful moments reminds me a lot of building mastery in DBT and the pleasant events diary homework assignment. 🙂
  • While I do want to write my own memoir and have that journey be the way it is, I also do want to return to reading other people’s memoirs, I think that’d be nice! 🙂 Get some exposures going again and all. 😛
  • Opening your subconscious mind to believing in yourself…and you will find that others new or old begin to believe in you too (paraphrased, Byrne, 2013, p. 73). This reminded me of Amaryllis again. :3
  • (About the keys and use of visualization…) I definitely want to practice more of drawing and writing about situations and dreams coming true and going well so I found the information on page 81 to be really helpful! I’d like to do practice scripts and things to that effect. 🙂 More work ahead of myself, for sure! XD I also have an existing idea about what the cover image of my memoir would be. 😉
  • One of the successful people talks about a book they only ever read the title of and no other mention of the author but I’m incredibly curious now: “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway” ❤
  • There’s a nice few sections on gratitude in this book that I enjoyed. It made me think (p. 104) about my fanfics like D&D, S, ALU and also made me think of someone whose mental health/ED journey I follow online as well as even just practicing gratitude when I’m at work. Which I still need to come up with activities for this week! Eeep! :S
  • I also think I can use gratitude for an old blog post idea I had back in the day and for my current online presence and community (maybe in shambles in some respects) but yeah. :3
  • I also think all this gratitude stuff came to align with a new twice daily journal that I got at Michael’s on clearance which has a prompt about gratitude and such. So, that’s nice. 🙂 Thanks, Universe!
  • On the idea of intuition being a flash of reasoning from the Universe: I need to work on trusting my intuition more at work especially. It is growing and becoming to exist/blooming in my chest.

 

  • Learn more about humility.
  • As told from Liz Murray’s perspective and how she moved from homelessness into a degree and motivational speaker: “what if that’s the school that lets me in? So I went and that was the school that let me in–that very next school. You never know when you’re about an inch away from your dreams. You have to do it one more time. Even if the one more time didn’t work, then do it one more time” — p. 133 For this, these positive what if’s, reminded me of the first IOOV and even the second IOOV from NAMI presentations I saw about mental health conditions and it always made me aware of this snagging reality that recovery is possible and maybe I could feel happy and fulfilled and live a life with mental health conditions. And, I’m where I’m at now. So, it IS possible!! Having a story and a purpose in that way was so beneficial for me. I’m grateful for that!! 😀
  • I don’t know if I ever did a proper blog post regarding this thumb/graphic design I made but it talked about how there are no one ways in life, that there are rotaries and side streets that will get you to the same destination in the end regardless. 🙂
  • Life Works Itself Out - No One Ways - THUMB - TT6 - 7.16.19
  • Art Idea Drawing #1 (9/14/20) : Lantern with rainbow light pooling out of it with a dark black background. Watercolors.
  • There exists an interesting comment on page 143 about how dreams evolve and how they will always be greater than you imagined, never smaller. 🙂
  • On the idea that as sensitive beings you’ll always be affected by naysayers but how you react to it is up to you (p. 147): This is exactly right and trolls and insensitive comments will always be there, how you handle it is up to you. Even in fanfics this would arise. It’s the consequence of putting yourself out there. Also reminded me of the lyric from “10 Feet Down” by NF: “it’s not about what you did, it’s what you became from it”
  • On the concept of other people taking your ideas and running with them before you get the chance to… yes, this is why I don’t want to be overly descriptive of some of my more pressing projects like my memoir, SOAR and my own fiction novels, etc. I’d rather keep some things under wraps whereas a few years ago I would have (and planned to) put it all out there. 😛 (By the way, SOAR isn’t the actual name of my memoir’s working title for now either, it’s just the pseudonym I’m using for it. :D)
  • On about p. 159 Byrne discusses how facing adversity and overcoming it gives you a set of strengths that forms your character and changes who you are into something greater than you were before…. This reminded me of an article I wrote during my final semester at uni titled “How I Earned My Degree Despite Adversity”. It was a pretty great article. It also makes me think of these words: ambitious, persistent, perseverance and determination

 

  • Concept: obstacles prepare the hero with the abilities to handle maintaining our dream when it comes true; without the skills to handle success [the dream] would not last (Byrne, 2013, p. 160). — I felt this was a good reminder even to myself to have more gratitude and patience with creating an online presence and following. ❤
  • I’m still pretty confused because on page 177 one of the hero’s mentions chronic fatigue to a debilitating degree and I’m not sure if they meant in general like tiredness or chronic fatigue syndrome/ME. It was never spelled out. :/
  • Liz Murray has a movie and a book!! I definitely want to check them both out! 😀 ❤
  • I liked this quote a lot from another hero saying essentially that living her dream is satisfying in respect and that she’s grateful for the fact that her doing what she wanted to do was inspiring to those who look up to her! p. 187 ….. I felt this was relatable even if just for my IOOVs and having hope within the darkness like I try to mention in my story’s script. 🙂
  • Out of nothing, you made something” Gwah! Love that! Byrne, 2013, p. 188
  • A hero is someone who’s made their life about something more than just themselves” — Byrne, 2013, p. 196; Amazing. Once again: interaction, promotion, encouragement. ❤ Bringing back the glory for everyone else to communicate with it, see it and engage with it.
  • I feel like giving back with writing blog posts and reviews and reading books in general is a great way to contribute to the larger good in the world. And my recovery projects and acts of kindness are also ways that make me feel like and inspire me to do more. 🙂 (Not gonna lie, at this point I’m getting very sleepy).
  • There’s a really great quote and experience that Liz Murray shares on page 209 of this book where she talks about how we are the sole authors of our stories and that we can change the way the plot goes at any point in time, that our interpretations make up our lives and it’s up to us to answer why we’re here and who we are. 🙂 This also reminded me of ALU.

At the very end of the book’s hero’s contributors pages (p. 200-227):

  • What’s the difference between a nonprofit organization and a foundation?
  • I wonder if Laird Hamilton ever made his goal for assisting 700k of people with the global water crisis. Also, did they help Flint, Michigan?
  • I would like to also check out Mastin Kipp (The Daily Love)
  • Mastin Kipp has Daily Love published by Hay House Publishing, 2014
  • Liz Murray: Breaking Night: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard; Hyperion, 2010.
  • Rhonda Byrne: The Secret film, The Secret book, The Power, The Magic.

A List of All the Things I Disagreed With:

    • I feel that on p. 25 it’s flawed logic to always look for the good in negative situations because it could be interpreted as dismissive and invalidating while having some kernels of truth locked away inside: that there is that duality in life and that something good can come out of the bad, some strengths can be found in the moments of weakness, etc.
    • Something I really didn’t agree with was on p. 31 where one of the heroes talks about how sitting on the couch moaning about what could have been and not living life by meeting people and traveling to new places was just unnecessary because just because they live their life one way doesn’t mean that’s the way EVERYONE has to live theirs, you know what I mean? It just didn’t sit right with me and really drags people down when you could easily use “I statements” or change the way you’re saying something instead of demeaning an entire population of people. 😛 Again, just because it wasn’t their definition of a life worth living doesn’t mean that they have to drag someone else’s life through the dirt like that. Bleh.
    • Another thing I didn’t agree with at all was this notion that mental health problems occurring throughout the world (p. 58) more these days is because it’s evidence that people are living miserable lives with jobs they were pressured into taking or had the expectation placed on them by others or society to do instead of their dreams. Like, no, that ain’t it chief. You can’t, or shouldn’t, define every case of a mental health condition to that of job dissatisfaction. Like, no, it’s a helluva more complex than that and doesn’t do the topic justice. Grrr. >:[
    • On the idea that people who are living with a pessimistic attitude suck the joy out of life and they suck the energy out of you and they’re miserable…. at what point is this insulting and demeaning to those who have these world views because of trauma or because of living with a mental health condition that clouds their perspective? Hot damn.
    • On the idea that whining, blaming, complaining and criticizing can’t fulfill a person’s dreams and give them happiness….. Whoa, whoa, whoa there. When is critique such a bad thing? When is having critical thought or skepticism or looking at all angles of a situation something so insulting and below a person? Like, not everyone is going to have the same opinion on things and they may tell you about it but what you do with that information is up to you! No one is forcing you to compile, change or do something at all in response to that. Besides, I admire those who can speak of their own opinion when it’s different than the masses. That’s helpful. Unless it’s just hate and is derogatory statements, than no, that’s not helpful/constructive criticism yet painting all criticism as a bad egg is one dimensional and doesn’t allow for enough freedom of speech and exploration of other things that the person in charge may not have realized. Again, saying nay when EVERYONE else is saying only yay, can be courageous too and just as helpful. Again, you don’t have to take their opinion into consideration. I don’t think it’s fair to begrudge and damn all of people’s opinions if they’re not just asspats to your ego. 😛 (p. 92) Critique, at its best, helps to spur on growth not diminish another’s worth.
    • Again the idea continues that a hero cannot ever be self-deprecating, miserable, a negative person could never be a hero, they can’t blame or complain etc. Honestly? That’s just mega judgmental and invalidating. I think having these flaws matters a little more than measuring up to whatever belief this author has about those types of things. I’d still watch if Tony Stark was more ‘negative’. It wouldn’t diminish him in my eyes! Ugh. Ranting and venting doesn’t equate to complaining. Having moments of despair doesn’t equate to being negative or pessimistic. It’s a part of being human. 😛
    • I really, really, really dislike this dangerous notion that certain feelings are “bad” and shouldn’t be experienced and never are by heroes, etc. Like, no, that’s not it. Emotions simply are and as long as we’re taking a more balanced approach to what our action urges are and what we want to do healthily with those emotions, than it doesn’t need to come down to “should’s and shouldn’ts”. Again, I think eliminating the experience of darker, less fun emotions is dangerous and not it at all. A person can’t exactly control their emotions and trying to suppress them could ignite a whole other flame of problems.
    • Continuing my level of disagreement with this book is what happens on p. 95 under the presumption that a hero is consistently optimistic, predominantly having a positive mind (eh) and the notion that your thoughts and your attitude become your life: 1. Yes, thinking it and believing it are related. Reminds me of that quote “Believe you can or believe you can’t, either way you’re half right” Also though, the idea 2. that your thoughts become your life is hardly the case in situations like MHC’s and OCD for instance. So, um, no. Maybe don’t make sweeping generalities that could be misconstrued and painted false easily by incorporating other perspectives? Or is that too much criticism from me? 😛

What Kept Me Reading and the Impact this Book Had on Me:

What really drew me to this book was when I found it at a great library by my psychiatrist’s office and I was looking for helpful and inspirational nonfiction books. I saw this cover and read the inside and outer flap and flipped through the pages and really wanted to try it out. I accidentally read it as “The Secret: Hero” rather than just “Hero” up until the point I actually dusted off the book and started reading. I’m glad that I stuck through the parts that made me disagree or exasperated and that I was able to read it pretty well, got pretty into it and got it done in a month. I’m proud of me for that! There is something very satisfying to me to get from page 1 of a book all the way to the end! 😀

One thing I really did like about this book was within the introduction when it was described by Byrne that the world is comprised of duality: that there is good and there is bad, there is hope and there is hopelessness, there is light and there is dark and it’s about how you perceive and interpret these things that paves ahead the road you’ll walk upon. Also, it’s emphasized that everyone has something great to offer the world and so it’s uplifting in that sense as well as encouraging and good for the soul and one’s self-worth. 🙂 And it’s up to you whether you achieve your dream or not, too.

I think this book has a great quality of being relatable in a lot of ways and sometimes also I found that it focused too much on business only dreams, but I took that in stride with the rest of its enthusiasm, patience, and practice. :3

I also think this book reminded and validated some of the areas of my life that I’m existing in right now, too: like, my work at Amaryllis, which it’s been a year now once a week and for a little while twice a week, is NOT my end goal destination job path. Rather, I want to write and publish books, do public speaking and the like. Those are my real dreams. *_*

Another thing I liked about this book is the way I could relate to it and how it made me think deeply on what I want to accomplish in life and how I might work towards getting there. The way I interacted with my own memoir, the preparation, the incentive and just being reminded that my dreams were possible and I could achieve them just as much as the next person, like the heroes stories in this book was very encouraging and uplifting. It definitely kept me reading more because I wanted to see not only where the book would head and end and how much inspiration and motivation I could even pull from it for myself–something no one else will have exactly in the same way I have. 🙂

On the idea of visualizations, I’d like to practice them going well with things like: IOOVs, work days, my memoir, my TEDtalk, reading and reviews. 😀

Something else that really inspired me about this book and from this book, really, was Liz Murray’s story and how she got into public speaking and sharing her story of adversity and overcoming it into success and triumph. It’s exactly the type of thing I want to get involved in and I found it particularly inspirational and I’m really, really happy for her!! 😀

For my own self, I’ve been doing advocacy work since March 2016 so that’s great. I am hoping to line up some of my ventures (interviews) in this avenue onto my blog within the next month. 😀


So, yes, overall those were ALL my thoughts about this book and the review. I tried to do a few things differently in this work of art so I appreciate you sticking with me until the end and around as I try and compact all of my thoughts, commentary and resounding opinions as I carry on reading books and reviewing them on this blog.

Thank you so much for reading!!! I am adding the final touches to this entry now on the first of October. I hope you all are doing well and I hope to be utilizing my planner very soon to revamp the way I do some blog posts, shout-outs etc. I desperately need a schedule ahaha. Thank you again! xxx ❤ ❤ ❤


Dates I Read this book:

8.30.20, 9.1, 9.8, 9.9, 9.12, 9.14.20.


Dates I Wrote this review:

9/24/2020, 9/30/20, 10/1.


No One Was Meant to Deal with This Life Alone | #SummerComer #PoetryChallenge Entry #8


Another late post, sorry about that!

Check out Entry #7’s poem here.

Also, let’s just jump right into it! 🙂


THE RULES

  • each post begins with the thumb above
  • each poem will be individually titled and labeled by the entry number in both the piece itself (at the end) and in the title
  • each post will include any background music used to “set the mood” which will be listed at the end of the entry
  • each poem loosely exists within the context of summer but is not strictly limited in constructing that imagery. I.e. it’s a summer project but may venture outside of that topic/theme-wise. 🙂
  • the goal: one poem each week from the end of May to the start of September under the hashtag: #SummerComer

Week #8’s Entry:

No One Was Meant to Deal with This Life Alone

“…You are not hopeless

Though you have been broken

Your innocence stolen

 

I will send out an army to find you

In the middle of the darkest night

It’s true, I will rescue you

 

There is no distance

That cannot be covered

Over and over

You’re not defenseless

I’ll be your shelter

I’ll be your armor

 

I hear you whisper underneath your breath

I hear your SOS, your SOS

 

I will send out an army to find you

In the middle of the darkest night

It’s true, I will rescue you

 

I will never stop marching to reach you

In the middle of the hardest fight

It’s true, I will rescue you

 

I hear the whisper underneath your breath

I hear you whisper, you have nothing left….”

— Lyrics from “Rescue” by Lauren Daigle

Trigger Warning: Depression, self-talk, implied suicidal ideation

(but also hope, rebirth, love, compassion, care, humanity, facing adversity, triumphs, worthiness, positivity and recovery)

your shoulders are weary.

 

your vision is lost.

 

you struggle to gasp for breath,

to pull in the air,

to let it out again.

 

you long for death.

 

but you cannot make it occur.

 

you’ve chosen a different path,

and still the pain bleeds blue,

and you feel you wish you could

surrender to it.

 

I see you.

I hear you.

I know your pain,

as it’s become mine.

 

I want you to know:

you’ll get through this.

there will be hope again.

this isn’t how your story ends.

there is more strength within you

than you realize.

the waves will leave and they will come again,

but they will always leave,

they will always fade,

so where you struggle,

you will find courage

and with that courage

you can find aid,

because no one was ever meant to

deal with this life alone.

 

so I will search for you,

I will search for you in the light of day

and in the darkest caverns of the night.

 

I’ll exclaim your name

because I know it to be

my own,

and I will find you,

I will find you,

and bring you back into the beacon

of the light that I know you will

feel again.

 

I will hold you,

tightly,

and remind you of all the reasons

you have to stay alive.

 

because you’re needed here,

you’re needed.

 

and we want you here,

we want you.

 

you are loved.

you are strong.

you are a warrior.

you are a survivor.

you are worthy.

you deserve to take up space.

you deserve a happy and healthy life.

you are amazing.

you are brave.

you are wondrous.

you are you

and no one can ever replace you.

 

so please,

please don’t try and replace yourself.

 

I see your shadow in the darkness,

the outline of grey that hangs in the air,

and I’m coming for you now.

I’m coming like the waves,

and when I find you,

I will secure you with the firelight

and you can sit back and hear the sparks

crinkle into the atmosphere around us

and you can find something in it,

something there,

that allows you to breathe an easier breath,

for your heart to beat another tune,

and for the world of pain to ebb away slowly,

finding yourself again

exactly where you thought you lost yourself.

 

you will be whole.

you will fall into acceptance.

and you will fight for a brighter day ahead.

 

because they come.

they do.

and we need you here

more than the heavens above require you.

 

so fight.

fight hard and fight loud.

we are here.

 

I am you.

 

and I want us to see another sunrise.

in the fading billows of the smoke,

in the joyous taste of a s’mores,

into the day ahead,

continuing onwards,

continuing over and over.

 

because we need to.

because the world is better

with us still in it.

 

and when you struggle to see the light,

I will hold it out for you.

 

and one day you’ll find,

that you can hold it out

for the next person you try

and save–

kindness and humanity

falling out of your palms

as you climb the highest hill

and call out their name.

 

because it’s you again,

in a different vessel,

it’s you,

and you’re as determined as I was

to find them,

to encourage them,

and to show them the world,

because they deserve to see it, too.

 

and on and on the story will pass,

endlessly into the dawn ahead,

and when the moonlight and the starlight

come out to shine,

someone else out there will find guidance in them,

peace in them

and be able to smile satisfactorily and feel

their soul beat with the crowd of souls that linger

by their side,

warming the air around them,

reminding them that

they

are never alone.

Technical aspects of the poem:

Written 7/10/2020

No mood music specified.


About the poem: So it looks like I wrote this poem the following day from my Goodbye Athena blog post. I was still dealing with the ramifications of that post into that day and I found out that late Thursday evening that I started Mother Redbird’s appearance (which would make more sense why I was so emotional). So I was still feeling the effects from it and needed to vent and had a harrowing day. I did it in the hopes that I could write or edit some fanfic afterward. It captured my mood pretty well,  I think, I found myself hanging on every word just now rereading it, and it is a hopeful poem even if it starts off dark and depressing. Such is life at times, huh? I think it’s a pretty worthwhile poem altogether speaking. I believe this preceded an email I sent to a friend called “Struggle Lane” and in between me working on a new fanfic chapter update.

If you are struggling with your mental health or suicidal ideation and you live in the USA you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline either by phone (1800 273 8255) or through their chat service. I used the chat service this day which I felt the person I spoke to didn’t understand either the OCD I live with or the situation of me writing about Athena however it DID allow me time to talk with my Mom and initiate help-seeking behavior in THAT way. So, it’s still worth a shot!!

So yeah, that’s what’s behind this post at least. I hope that you are having a nice day and I’ll be updating this blog with a few new posts in the coming week.

Have a pleasant weekend!!

❤ ❤ ❤

 

#SummerComer #PoetryChallenge Entry #6: Humanity is Measured Not in Hate But in Kindness


Hi again.

When you find this post, I will have scheduled it the day before. Or, the evening before, more so. Regardless, here is the sixth entry into this Poetry Challenge that I’ve made for myself.

Enjoy!

PS Here is last “week’s” post.


What are the RULES?

  • each post begins with the thumb above
  • each poem will be individually titled and labeled by the entry number in both the piece itself (at the end) and in the title
  • each post will include any background music used to “set the mood” which will be listed at the end of the entry
  • each poem loosely exists within the context of summer but is not strictly limited in constructing that imagery. I.e. it’s a summer project but may venture outside of that topic/theme-wise. 🙂
  • the goal: one poem each week from the end of May to the start of September under the hashtag: #SummerComer

Humanity is Measured Not in Hate But in Kindness

it was somewhere

along the way

that they

didn’t

have the heart

to say ‘No.’

it was some place

along the trail

that they

didn’t

have the strength to

bark back ‘Please.’

it was in some manner

where the sun

sparkled through the trees

that they struggled

with the courage

resting in their breast

to say “Stop.”

there was something in the way

that the moonlight

glittered on the ocean front

that made their experience

quantify into thousands of

insects’ wings fluttering up

into a cacophony of sound,

the air vibrating with their pressure,

the breath of life that leaked

from their open mouth

spun into kaleidoscopes as they

shouted from the ground,

“Let me free!”

the sticky, black goo

that rose from the tarmac

threatened to take their

existence from them,

but they were strong,

they were holding on tight,

and they never backed down,

grumbling out instead,

“Try to take me,

And you’ll fail.”

The goo transformed,

turning to a face that

they recognized

as painful,

but still they reiterated,

“Try to scare me,

And you won’t win.”

Their expression was harder now,

softer in some respects,

and their blue eyes flashed

with purpose.

“Try to take me,” they uttered with

a voice as strong as Plexiglas.

“I’d like to see you try.”

The goo changed again,

curling its tendrils around their legs,

legs rooted to the ground in a

steadfast position.

The goo curled them into a tight hug,

but they weren’t afraid any longer,

instead they smirked and said,

“Is that the best you’ve got?”

The goo hissed and moved to strangle them,

and they laughed instead,

pulling away easily and

humming to themselves,

“Your weakness baffles me.”

They narrowed their eyes at the

monstrosity before them.

“You’ve fought wars

and sought out pain,

yet here you are,

incapable of taking me down.

Do you know why?”

The intensity sparked further in their eyes,

just as they began to remove their arms,

stretching the goo’s material

as it cried out in discomfort.

“Because I am Loved.

Because I am Worthy.

Because I am Arose in Purpose.

Because I am Faith.

Because I am More.

More than you’ll ever be,

And when I struggle for breath,

When I fade in the dying light,

I’ll still be Strong,

I’ll still know my Worth,

Because unlike you,

I don’t need to tear people

Down in order to shine brighter.”

They grasped the creature’s limbs

in tight, closed fists.

“You can come back for me,

And you will,

But I’ll win again,

Because I have strength,

I have power,

I have unlimited potential

Compared to you.”

They tilted their head slightly,

the intensity in their stare never

wavering.

“But I won’t kill you,

I won’t destroy you.

Because I know what that’s like too.

So I will help you,

I will uplift you,

And I will heal you,

Because that is what you need.

And if you refuse to change,

If you refuse to become better,

Then I will let you go.

Because even you deserve not to be

Hindered.

Even you deserve freedom.”

The ghost of a smile

Lit up their features as they

Pushed down the creature,

Back into its small pocket

Upon the floor.

“It takes more love to treat

Those who crave it,

But aren’t aware of it,

Than it does to easily

Spill apart hate.”

They dusted off their palms,

The ashy hue left upon their

Fingerprints

And as they did so,

As they did,

Their spirit sparkled and they said

Lowly,

“I’ll trust in you,

Even when you don’t in me.

Because that’s the biggest

Difference between us:

You hate, you destroy, you crave power

and I am loved, I create and I

already exist powerfully.”

They slid a lone finger down the side

Of the aching creature’s face,

“And all you needed was the same.

And I’m sorry you didn’t receive it.

For I am here if you change your mind,

But tearing down others to

Build yourself up,

Is not the way.”

They sighed, lightly.

“Maybe one day you will see that.

For now, I will hold onto it for you.”

They began to walk away, but not before

Saying over their shoulder,

“I’ll be back for you at a later date,

And I will hope for you

And dream for you,

What you never dared to dream for yourself.

Rest easy, my dear.”

A torched piece of parchment

Flew free from their hand

And fell down near the shadow’s

Skin,

Etched upon its surface were the words:

Spreading kindness in a world of hate

Lifts all souls that deserve no such fate.

For humanity is measured not in which

All there is light, but rather when there exists much fight.

And no matter what cost,

What they engender must be no less than crossed.

For it is not only how a person acts within a crowd,

But the way they act alone and proud.

Forgiveness is a force that can only be decided

By those at war,

Who crave more,

Who desire a roar.

And at the end of the night,

They can only choose to shine bright.

Because where there is dark in light,

There is light in night,

And they, too, shall never lose sight.

Technical Aspects of the Poem:

Written and Edited: 6/26/2020

Mood Music: “Where the Shadow Ends” by BANNERS ft. Young Bombs


About the Poem: Kinda thinking of Kill Monger and T’Challa in “Black Panther” (2018) along with other related types of events occurring in the world and just having a creative spirit birthed this poem. I’m not sure if it even makes much sense (and I’ve tried my best rewriting/rewording some parts to make more sense, but I still can’t tell ahaha) but it’s what I got for this week and so that will have to be enough. Also, I’ve been doing a lot more lower cased poetry which isn’t something that I would do a lot of in the past, just an interesting thing. I tried to keep the change when our narrator they started talking more and their confidence grew and so the stylistic choices changed as well to match that. But yeah, let me know what you think!! Thank you so much for reading and feel free to share this work along with my others! Stay safe. xxx

Film Review Friday: “Jane Goodall: The Hope” (2020)

Film Review THUMB


Chosen Film/Year:

“Jane Goodall: The Hope” (2020)


Movie Rating:

TV 14


Movie Length:

1 hour & 28 minutes


Directors/Producers:

Elizabeth Leiter & Kimberly Woodard;

Lucky 8 TV & National Geographic.


Themes:

Activism; humanity; biology; chimpanzees; rescue; advocacy; love and kindness; inspiration; younger generations; community; teamwork; hope; humanitarianism; projects; conferences.


Trigger Warnings:

Mild substance use (alcohol)


How I found it?

Disney+


Movie Summary:

This documentary follows Jane Goodall, the chimpanzee scientist who observed the animals in the wild when she was young and in Africa, and her journey towards finding a footing in the activism sector and speaking out for those animals that she cared so much about and wanted to fight for and give a voice to them and others. This documentary follows her and the ins and outs of her story, where she came from, where she wants to continue going and how she hopes she’s making a positive impact not only on the planet but with the younger generation. She has multiple projects, “Shoots and Roots” as one for instance, and speaking opportunities that she literally travels worldwide for. She is a powerhouse woman built on the foundations of honesty, passion, determination, fight, spirit and perseverance. With a movie so visually pleasing and heartwarming from the dialogue and map of Goodall’s work, this is a must watch documentary to introduce you into activism, environmentalists and, above all, hope and positive change for the footprint left by mankind.

I thought it was especially interesting for them to include her meeting with her assistant/worker where they’re trying to figure out her schedule for conferences and being where/when and such. It just offered a neat perspective into how much she does and how much she’s trying to cram in with her growing age, and the fact that she still has such a large commitment and power to her voice that she wants liberated before she passes on. There’s just something especially empowering about all that, I think.


Cinematography & Transitions:

I felt that the transitions to this documentary were really pretty fantastic. We got the voiceovers of Jane Goodall as she spoke at length in different parts and more of the detached audio with moving pictures representing the landscapes or worlds within the world of local communities. Various people were interviewed throughout the documentary and gave their thoughts and inspirations from Goodall and it made the importance of such activism really shine and even help to further inspire so many other people out there who may want to embark on similar careers.

I know for myself that it was really pretty inspiring and I might work into activism some day, too. I think it’s so awesome all the work Jane has done in her fields of interest and intense passions. I hope we still get to be blessed with a few more years of her work and her mission and her story. To be able to appreciate her ongoing impact and others enjoying her presence and her soul is so powerful, that I’m really grateful there was another documentary made about her (I didn’t watch the first one, though). I think our current day society tends to congratulate and celebrate lives AFTER they’ve passed on so it was really nice to see a present play by play of gratitude and appreciation. 🙂

Also noteworthy is that the documentary itself was broken up into transitional slides that had a few words on what that next section of the movie would be about. I also think that through the production of this movie that we got to see the quirks of Jane Goodall and her humor, let alone her kindness and compassion to folks.


Memorable Quotes:

  1. “If we lose hope then we must all give up if we think there’s no way forward…We mustn’t let [that] happen.”

  2. “My job is to go around and inspire people to take action”

  3. [About Goodall] ‘She is driven to her commitment–to her mission'”
  4. “Every person matters. And every animal does too. But every person makes some impact on the planet every single day and we get to choose what sort of difference we make”

  5. “…I truly believe it’s only when head and heart work in harmony that we can achieve our true human potential”

  6. “If you don’t talk to people how can you ever expect them to change?”

  7. “Hope attached to action [is what] we all take responsibility for”
  8. “Don’t be confrontational: reach people’s hearts to change their minds. Don’t do something because you want the honor and glory of it”

  9. Concept:

    How anger with the rest of the world sparked Goodall’s passion.

  10. “When you die there’s either nothing, which case is fine, it’s finished, over, you don’t know anymore. Or there’s something. And I happen to believe there’s more than just this one physical life. I haven’t the faintest idea what else there is but if that’s true then what greater adventure can there be?”


Information Delivery:

I found the information in this documentary to be engaging, visually pleasing, understandable and educated me well on what mattered or what were the highlights of Goodall’s mission and those around her.


My final thoughts:

So, I found this documentary on Disney+ when I began my first week’s free trial (even though I’ve signed up completely for the plan, :3). I wanted to watch something for what I’m now designating as “Movie Monday’s” and this was the one that stood out to me for a documentary and something I’d be interested in learning more about.

I had never really heard of Jane Goodall before I watched this documentary and this is the first one I’ve seen with her in it. I think I mildly recall a reference to her from one of my biology classes about her having taken such field study related notes with the chimpanzees in Africa.

Regardless, I was eager to learn and listen and become educated. I really enjoyed the entirety of the documentary and I think it’s really kinda inspired me to get back into environmentalist stuff. When I was a little kid I used to be really into animals and saving the planet and as I got older I drifted away from that. But I did some community based volunteer work within the Greater Boston area in college and one of them was trash picking and I really enjoyed doing that, so maybe when corona is over or the quarantine is lifted a bit, I’ll get back into that, even if it’s just around my local community for now. 🙂

Two other things I want to touch on briefly include:

The confrontation quote and subsequently the not doing something because you want the brownie points is something that I struggle with because I think I do seek that external validation somehow in some ways and I want to be praised and loved by others around me, which is odd and interesting to say and acknowledge at the moment.

Secondly, the final quote absolutely reminds me of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with how Endgame went and Stark’s sacrifice. You know the whole, “part of the journey is the end.” ❤

And lastly, an additional point, the public speaking in Goodall’s life also reminded me of Kevin Hines who I also greatly look up to and whom inspires me and why I share my mental health journey story. But, that’s it from me now. 😉


Recommendation Score:

8/10


 

Above all: thank you. Thank you so much for viewing this blog post, for liking it if you did and if you were gracious enough to leave me a comment. I hope to one day give as much back into the community that I found a home in as I had a few years ago. It’s become lonely just talking to a void. I may challenge myself to write shorter posts here and there too or to just post more in general. I’d like to return to my roots, myself.


I estimate an update blog post for either this coming Sun or Mon, by the way.

Lastly, my handwritten notes when I viewed this movie occurred on April 27th 2020; and I completed more of the writing and form of this review on May 1st.

Stay safe, peeps!

❤ ❤ ❤ xxxx

PS This is my first officially published film review!!! I have DOZENS of notes for others but I never got this far so I’m really pretty happy about this. The views and opinions of this post are my own and I’m coming from a pro-recovery mental health journey perspective so some things will be skewed with that in mind and for the inspiration/expected audience in mind of my peers who may be looking for pick me up movies. 🙂