The first thing that comes to mind when I hear the word vigilant is a wolf pack with a very watchful alpha or an old silverback looking after his troop ( I looked it up! It’s really a troop…. I may have thought it was actually called a congress because of a meme I once saw). He’s ready to take out any threat that dares get too close to his safety zone….. Ever watchful. The word feels very masculine and even paternal to me; I know some of that is due to who gave me the word, he is a dude… but even if the word had come from a woman, I think the word would still feel masculine and strong to me. Had any of my female friends given me this word, I know the first thing I would have thought of would be cancer survivors- they are ever watchful for a return of that beast. Actually, it brings to mind anyone who has battled a chronic illness, experienced great loss, or clawed their way out of something they never want to get a hold of them again. To be vigilant with our health is seen in preventative care, and early detection of cancers or other illness can result in damage reduction. Vigilant people are by nature living deliberately, they are always remaining watchful but they need to make sure the vigilance doesn’t turn into obsession… but we all need a certain degree of the vigilant trait. In my experience those who are vigilant are also reliable and always follow through. I plan to be vigilant for the whole year and all 52 words will have a page of their own…. Writing about a word a week may sound silly to some- especially when they are random words you got from friends on facebook or family members…. But each week has been a challenge for a different reason. I am a work in progress just like everyone else and making changes stick and creating new habits takes a good amount of vigilance…. Crushing goals takes vigilance- but maintaining those goals takes equally as much vigilance.
I love looking for quotes for my words, this week I had two that really stuck with me. The first is from Taher Ben Jelloon “Be vigilant, for nothing one achieves lasts forever” and the second is from Jeff Bezos (not an uber fan of his but I do like this quote) “Though we are optimistic, we must remain vigilant and maintain a sense of urgency”. I am not sure what the first quote was specifically made in reference to but I did read a little about the Bezos quote, and it was taken from a 2017 or 2018 letter he wrote to his shareholders…. I can’t explain more because I didn’t end up actually reading the letter, it was not super interesting to me. But I do love the quote. As part of this project, I (or more accurately my editor) sends me cues when I am struggling, she will always ask what color it is and other tactile stimuli… some words it really doesn’t work for me like Week 7 (https://hotmesshub.com/2020/02/16/week-7-trump/)- no way was I imagining any tactile stimuli or my senses. A word like this is much easier, green is the color that pops into my head. The texture is like a truck bed liner, vigilant has had its bumps and bruises, it is strong yet forms to fit its needs, it stays in place and watches out to prevent damage to the bed it covers.
Last but not least, my favorite part of 52 words is when I can tie the word to the person and understand why that was the word they chose. The person/word pair dont always click with me but when they do it makes me enjoy writing just a little bit more. This word is very fitting to the friend who gave the word. This friend has seen some harsh times the last few years, life is unfair sometimes, but he never breaks, he vigilantly has back-up plans for his back-up plans. Not only has he not broken, he has excelled in many areas; he has made things happen when the easy way out would have been to just let things happen. In his case I feel like his tenacity and his vigilance is directly reflected in his perseverance and ability to overcome all the obstacles he has faced the last few years. I love when I can be inspired by a friend and their word. Thank you for reading this week, I will include some links to other words. I am really enjoying this project, I think we all need to find our power in the pause. Find a way to make the time, challenge yourself to a goal- no matter how big or small. Making yourself sit down and think, breathe, and create is so good for your soul. Always remember, live deliberately!