I was chatting this week with a new friend who I will call Sarah that feels like there is nothing she can do to lose weight. Her life reads like so many other tragedies of obesity:
- a traumatic and abusive childhood
- complete ignorance of nutrition
- challenges with finances now and no time for exercise.
A perfect storm of conditions that have led to persistent obesity that she just can’t seem to overcome. What could I possibly say to Sarah?
When I come across situations like this, I sometimes will turn to the weather.
I recently read about the Atacama Desert in Chile. It is literally the driest place in earth. It once went
almost 15 years without a single drop of rainfall. The closest city Antofagasta gets a ridiculously low .07 inches (.17 centimeters) per year. It stands as a stark dry strip of death along the Pacific Coast of South America in the shadows of the Andes Mountains.
Sometimes our lives feel this dry. We feel like there’s literally nothing we can do to create life within ourselves.
But here’s the important thing that I used to help Sarah: every once in a while, the rain comes. Last March, the Atacama saw its first major rainfall in a long time– almost a full inch in a single day! While that may not seem like much, for this region, rain like that makes rivers overflow and it changes the face of the entire region.
And even in the driest place on earth with it’s looming deathly feel, there are seeds in the soil for malva flowers. When El Nino storms pound this region every 5–7 years, those dormant seeds sprout to life taking advantage of the rains. Today, the Atacama desert is literally exploding with luscious, pink flowers.
Like the desert, you have within you the seeds of greatness. Even if you have some conditions (abuse
, nutritional ignorance, lack of time or money) that make your life feel like the Atacama, with the right conditions, you can thrive.
Unlike the desert, you don’t have to wait for seasons. You can create your own rain. Through practices like affirmation, meditation and education, you can overcome the conditions you may feel like you can’t control. You can become inspired without weather conditions. Your seeds of greatness are waiting for you to water them. They, like the Atacama’s Malva want nothing more than to bloom.
Sometimes the inspiration to change will come like El Nino every five to seven years. For many of us, we have a few drops hit every year around January 1st. But for all of us, there is a beautiful field just waiting to happen.
Is this your season?