Finding Ourselves in The Struggle (while looking for “the thing” that works)

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“Look at a stone cutter hammering away at his rock, perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the hundred-and-first blow it will split in two, and I know it was not the last blow that did it, but all that had gone before.” Jacob Riis

You likely have friends like mine who jump on the latest, greatest, and fastest quick fix whether it’s a vitamin, book on tape, nutritious juice, blog to read, advice about drinking 13 gallons of water, Bible study, get-rich-quick scheme, revivaled church, diet plan, exercise plan, or life plan, and they talk about it ad nauseam.

Yeah, they drive me nuts too, but I get ‘em because I’m one of them.

It’s like I’m on a trampoline and bouncing from thing to thing to thing. Each time I land, I’m sure this is the fix for getting my own life. I’ve struggled through all that’s gone before, but I’m convinced I’ve now arrived, right in the middle of highlighting a book that arrived yesterday from Amazon.

I’ve finally happened upon the thing.

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That is, until the next latest, greatest, and fastest quick fix comes along.

For a couple of years now, my search has been for the thing that spurs enough inspiration to complete my manuscript. I enthusiastically promoted Michael Hyatt’s Influence and Impact Summit, convinced that was it. I posted daily about the high profile speakers and their motivational presentations. In hindsight, the summit was “all that had gone before” (from the quote above), but it wasn’t the hundred-and-first blow.

Even though the hundred-and-first blow (the thing we’re searching for) comes about because of the search, I easily tire and become exasperated with searching for and anticipating it. Maybe you do too.

And maybe figuring this out last week will help. Here it is. I figured out that it’s in hindsight I recognize I’ve found what I’m looking for.

Soren Kierkegaard said, “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”

When a friend posted a story about the importance of taking ourselves seriously, as well as the impact of that attitude on finalizing projects, I thought, This is the attitude change I need to move my manuscript toward completion.

In other words, this is the hundred-and-first blow. It is the thing.

My next thought was, Hear I go again.

I resisted talking about the article like I’d done with Michael Hyatt’s summit. Well, except my one mention in my last blog post. I decided to wait and see. Otherwise, I’m caught up in the information instead of initiating it. If I complete my manuscript in light of the author’s insight, I’ll give credit and tell all about it. If not, I’ll keep searching. That’s pretty much how it works. #GettingYourOwnLife.

Even though we can’t bring about the hundred-and-first blow and we have no idea when it will happen, the quote offers hope that it will. It also says “all that had gone before” matters.

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In light of this, I’d like for us to …

Let go of the struggle.

Simply do the next thing without expecting it to be the thing, and know it matters.

Trust the thing will happen.

I can breathe a little easier. How about you?

In This Together,
Kim

 

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19 responses »

  1. Kim, I love this because I think we have all bounced around from thing to thing. I know I have with my business, expecting each new focus to be THE ONE and then realizing later that my heart just isn’t in it any more. Maybe all those jumps were leading me to the writing, or maybe the writing is just one more “thing. I hope not. I especially love the last few lines: “Simply do the next thing without expecting it to be the thing, and know it matters.” That reminds me of another friend who eventually wrote a book on grief. After his wife died suddenly in a car accident, he sought therapy to deal with the grief, and the counselor asked him to just “do the next thing” in order to move forward. He did, and a book finally emerged from a series of next things. Keep doing the next thing and I know you’ll get there without any magic solutions.

    • Mary, I so hoped you and others would relate. I kind of felt foolish when I started writing this because I’m all over the place and always have been. In fact, I’m probably more focused now than ever before, and I’m still bouncing.

      “… or maybe the writing is just one more “thing. I hope not.” That’s similar to the thought I had after reading the article shared by Summer, the one about taking ourselves seriously. I hope it’s not just one more “thing,” but, if it is, the final thing will happen and I’ll complete the book. I really do believe that now. And I could breathe easier after I admitted all of this to y’all. There’s something about confession that is cleansing and healing and helpful as far as moving on. I guess John’s mom (a staunch Catholic who confessed regularly) was onto something.

      I appreciate the story about your friend. That’s what I’m hoping for.

      Thank you, and especially thanks for the last sentence of your comment. ❤

  2. Thanks for the prompting, AND the permission, to stop all the struggling and the constant grieving and waiting, for that next thing… In all my struggling I had lost hope, and had begun to find it very difficult to just DO the next thing (most times not even knowing what the next thing SHOULD be, nor having the energy to do it)–Now I’m beginning to see and feel how everything that went before DID matter, it wasn’t a waste, or something I need feel guilty about having been stuck there so long in, and I can actually feel my hope being revived. Hope is crucial! I know myself well though, and constantly reminding myself TO TRUST the next thing WILL happen is going to be necessary!

    Yes, I can breathe a little easier already. I REALLY needed this.

    Thanks again,
    Tammy

    • Tammy, thank you so much for your comment! ❤ I can't tell you how accurately you described how I've felt for almost 10 years. It's been a long decade!

      Hope is crucial, but I couldn't manufacture it, so I got really scared it was gone for good. Thanks for sharing your hopeful experience. I needed your words, as well!

  3. The last few years have been really rough, but I survived them. After losing my daughter my world no longer made sense. I didn’t seem to fit anywhere. Then Tom’s heart attack and my stroke. My emotional mindset made doing anything extremely frustrating, so I turned back to writing to get through my days. In between my physical therapy sessions and our doctor visits, the only thing that made sense was writing the story that so many people told me must be told. A story filled with Sherry’s incredible example of living life when it really mattered. Doing the next thing was finishing Sherry’s book and praying my words in A Gift of Joy would honor my daughter and capture her spirit.

    Thanks for the reminder that doing the next thing, or in my case doing the only thing I could manage, helped me get back to my life.

    • Agnes, you and Sherry were and still are an inspiration to me. I can’t imagine the loss, but I could see and feel God when you’d post updates. Y’all touched so many people’s lives. ❤ It was heartbreaking to know what your family went through, but, at the same time, heartwarming to see the love and grace and crafts 🙂 that came out of it. I love the example you set.

      I appreciate you sharing how writing Sherry's book gave you back your life. That's encouraging as I work on my own. I love you!

  4. Kim, I love your insights on getting your own life. This resonated deeply with me and I am like you with my addiction to the latest book from Amazon (I have three right now). I’m off now to do the next thing.

    • Rebecca, I might finish my own book if I’d put away everyone else’s! LoL. I hope you and I are reading each other’s books one of these days. 🙂 Or you’re reading my book and I’m signed up for your courses. Could happen if we keep doing the next thing.

  5. Love, love, love this post! I love your advice in the end to let go of the struggle and just do the next thing without expecting it to be “the” thing. That does help me breathe a little easier and helps me take the pressure off of myself. I’ve been wondering if the things I’ve committed myself to are really helping me…or what I should be committing myself to instead. Now I think that I just won’t worry about it. 🙂 The right thing will come along. It may be the 101st thing…or not. And that’s fine.

    • Awww, thanks for loving this, Anjana. I love your comment. ❤

      I would NOT think you'd struggle with this. You seem focused and on the right track and like you're doing the next thing. Your comment goes to show we're more alike than we think sometimes and we're all dealing with a lot of the same things. I know I should know better because we’ve talked, but then my self-talk starts and it’s not always accurate or helpful or loving. Your comment also reminds me not to compare and think someone else won't relate if I share this sort of thing with them. That kind of thinking right there makes life tougher because it isolates me/us.

      I've exhausted myself searching out the 101st thing to the point of losing the point of the journey. Geez! I'd like to relax a little and enjoy the next thing no matter what number it is. LoL. 🙂 Thank you!

      • Relax! Don’t listen to the self talk. There’s a great blog post you should read by a great writer on letting go of the struggle and not expecting the next thing to be THE thing! 😉 LOL! As for me, I am still focused on and love my travel business. I took the blog post to refer to all the avenues I’ve been pursuing to build up the business – trying to join the right groups and give my support and involvement to the right groups so as to reach my ideal clients and build the business. I may have misunderstood the original intent of what you wrote. Maybe you meant jumping from job to job. Either way, it doesn’t really matter. The way I understood it resonated for me and taught me to not worry about it. I put too much pressure on myself to be at a certain level with my business…and don’t give myself enough credit for accomplishing what I have so far. For now, I’m going to be like Elsa and “let it go, let it go…” 🙂

      • Hahaha, Anjana. I do need to relax! And I may need to revisit that blog post. 🙂 The writer said to thank you. ❤ I think I was thinking too hard about your comment. Imagine that! LoL.

        You didn't misunderstand. How you took it is how I meant it. I just imagine you as confidently moving forward with your business and not questioning the next step. That's a good image to portray, so your clients trust you to send them all over the world. However, I should know better than to think any of us aren't questioning ourselves or the next step or if we're far enough, fast enough.

        One of my favorite movies ❤ and favorite songs ❤ …

  6. I like the analogy of steps, just keep taking it a step at a time and work towards your goal, enjoying the journey and before you know it you will be there. But the secret really is the journey, not necessarily only the end goal.

  7. From Facebook (Kim Henson) ~

    Alice Martin McDowell, Megan Hunt Dell and 9 others

    1 share

    Anjana C. Duff LOVED this blog post! I commented at the blog site. 🙂
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 10:49pm

    Kim Henson Thanks so much, Anjana C. Duff. Hopefully I’ll make it to the comments tonight. I keep trying and I keep getting distracted. Isn’t that what I keep writing about? LoL.
    Like · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 11:02pm

    Anjana C. Duff Haha! Go back and reread your blog on distractions. It might help. 😉 lol
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 11:03pm

    Kim Henson Anjana C. Duff, hahahah. You think?
    Like · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 11:12pm

    Anjana C. Duff Maybe not. lol 😉
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 11:20pm

    Kim Henson Anjana C. Duff, I laughed out loud. Yeah, maybe not. 😀
    Like · Reply · 1 · June 27 at 12:08am

    Diane Wilson Dale I love your blog…everytime, it seems to be the “thing” that I need to read, today! thank you for sharing!
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 27 at 7:16am

    Kim Henson Diane Wilson Dale, hahaha. I’m so happy I can offer someone else “the thing.” I’m surely familiar with lots of them! 😉 I think about you every day and pray for y’all. Love and miss you! ❤
    Like · Reply · June 27 at 10:48am

    Diane Wilson Dale Love and miss you. too!
    Like · Reply · June 27 at 11:29am

    Linda Sandlin I just discovered your Blog and hope I don't over flood my wall with your good STUFF. I love wisdom and advise from minds that are aware and filled with the Holy Spirit's guidance. ❤
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 27 at 8:20am

    Kim Henson Awww, Linda Sandlin. Thank you! ❤ I hope you do a bunch of flooding. LoL. 😀 Thanks for calling this "good stuff" and "wisdom." I always pray that what I share is not just me talking, but God sharing through me.
    Like · Reply · June 27 at 10:45am · Edited

    Pia Savage Read your post last night and was too tired to comment. Love love love it for its basic truth. I think we're all looking for the next best thing until we're old and tired unless we're very wise (I'm not) and know when to be satisfied. Ironic–I'm writi…See More
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 27 at 8:40pm

    Kim Henson Pia Savage, I think not being satisfied is making me older and more tired and doing it pretty quickly, which is a good thing. Means I'll arrive at my satisfied place sooner. 😉 The header's been there for a while, but it's easy to overlook in black & white. Everyone was really happy. It was a fun family weekend. Who knows what Claire was thinking. LoL. How's the book coming along?
    Like · Reply · Yesterday at 1:19am

    Megan Hunt Dell Every time I read what you write, I think, "Get out of my head, Kim!"
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · Yesterday at 8:32am

    Kim Henson Hahaha, Megan Hunt Dell. I need more access to your head so I'll have more ideas for blog posts. What should we talk about next? 😉
    Like · Reply · Yesterday at 2:06pm

  8. From Facebook (Connie Gardner’s page) ~

    2 Likes

    Kim Henson Thanks so much for sharing, Connie Gardner. ❤
    Like · Reply · 1 · Yesterday at 1:59pm

    Connie Gardner Thank you for posting all your helpful inspiration❤️
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · Yesterday at 2:32pm

    Kim Henson Connie Gardner, awww, thank you again.
    Like · Reply · Yesterday at 3:43pm

  9. From Facebook (S. Kim Henson) ~

    Jo Ann Sarti, Mary Lancaster and 7 others

    2 shares

    Summer Turner Wow, just wow! I’m sharing the heck out of this!
    Unlike · Reply · Message · 1 · June 25 at 12:50pm

    S. Kim Henson Thank you, thank you, Summer Turner! ❤
    Like · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 11:08pm

    Angela Rosati I love this!
    Unlike · Reply · Message · 1 · June 25 at 1:00pm

    S. Kim Henson Thanks so much, Angela Rosati. I appreciate your comment. ❤
    Like · Reply · June 26 at 11:09pm

    Sybil Lee Just do it
    Unlike · Reply · Message · 1 · June 25 at 1:33pm

    S. Kim Henson I'm trying, Sybil Lee. 😉
    Like · Reply · June 26 at 11:09pm

    Jane Caterina so basically….one day at a time….do what is right for you….trust your guts
    Unlike · Reply · Message · 1 · June 26 at 9:30am

    S. Kim Henson Yes, yes, and yes, Jane Caterina. That's it! Thanks for stopping by. 😀
    Like · Reply · June 26 at 11:10pm

    Rebecca Barnes-Hogg “right in the middle of highlighting a book that arrived yesterday from Amazon.” Haha I do that too and have 3 on my nightstand now.
    Unlike · Reply · Message · 2 · June 26 at 9:56am

    S. Kim Henson Oh, goodness, Rebecca Barnes-Hogg. I'm always searching. It's okay, but I'd love to relax a little! I had to finally move all but one book from my nightstand. #tallstack LoL.
    Like · Reply · June 26 at 11:11pm

  10. From Facebook (Summer Turner’s page) ~

    I highly recommend reading this from my friend Kim Henson. A nugget of wisdom we all need, delivered with Kim’s inimitable flair for humor and all-in-this-together style.

    S. Kim Henson Thank you so much, Summer @ Summer Turner’s Success for Introverted Women. I appreciate you! ❤
    Like · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 11:03pm

  11. From Facebook (Summer Turner in private group) ~

    I’m assigning this helpful post from our very own Kim Henson. Get this point into your subconscious mind and you’ll be good to go for the long haul. 🙂

    Mary McKerihan Wilson and Rebecca Barnes-Hogg

    Kim Henson Thanks so much for passing this along, Summer Turner. You’re a wonderful mentor. ❤
    Like · Reply · 1 · June 26 at 11:04pm

    Jennifer Tinsman Kim, I think that reaching this place of no pressure to produce has been the key for me. I cannot even claim any great knowingness about why this happened other than I have worked consciously to be better at staying in the present moment and going with…See More
    Unlike · Reply · 2 · June 27 at 9:13am

    Kim Henson Thanks for your encouragement, Jennifer Tinsman. I couldn't agree more. Your comment states it well. Summer's course has already helped me break free from some of my bad habits and negative thinking I'm hoping the more I follow her lead, the freer I'll become. ❤ You do the same. Your writing is inspirational.
    Like · Reply · June 27 at 10:57am

    Summer Turner Yes, yes, yes!!!
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 27 at 11:55am

    Summer Turner Ease and flow in spiritual alignment is what I really want to teach the world (as I continue practicing it myself). 🙂
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 27 at 12:04pm

    Gwen Ries Thank you Summer Turner for assigning this. Kim Henson never doubt the power of your voice. This touches the very core in so many ways. From our self doubts, to curiosity driving us forward only to let us down, then the realization we are doing what were meant to do and appreciate it. Thank you for reminding us, live in this moment and trust our forward step.
    Unlike · Reply · 2 · June 27 at 11:08pm

    Summer Turner Well said, Gwen!
    Unlike · Reply · 1 · June 27 at 11:09pm

    Kim Henson Gwen Ries, I agree with Summer. That is really well said. I'm thrilled this is what you got out of it because it's exactly what I was trying to say. You wouldn't believe how many edits I go through to try and make my point. Thank you! ❤
    Like · Reply · 1 · Yesterday at 6:20pm

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