Hope Can Be One of Your Greatest Allies in Your Recovery

“Hope for the best and prepare for it. Also prepare for the worst, and hope the time you spent preparing for it will turn out to have been wasted.”

Wendy Edey


“I have counselled so many people with depression so crippling that it will not allow them to hope for the best. Everything they do seems to be directed toward preparing for the worst. The preparation becomes so compelling a preoccupation that good things within their reach can elude their grasp, remaining as unnoticed as bed bugs in the light of day.

The problem, I think, is that hope in the context of hoping for the best is a passive thing, while preparing is an active occupation.

The problem, I think, is that hope in the context of hoping for the best is a passive thing, while preparing is an active occupation. We can get so busy preparing that any benefits of hope become invisible to us. Hope isn’t much use until we put a little preparation into it.

One of my favorite things about hope is that, when treated to attention and respect, it tends to direct our activities. To get the best out of hope, we have to treat it the way we treat a treasured infant. We can’t simply mention it and expect it to take care of itself. We have to sit with it, inquire about it, experiment with it, nurture it, work towards its goals. We have to invest in it. Even as we invest some effort into preparing for the worst.” Wendy Edey

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The 9 ways that hope is empowering

  1. It is built on self-respect rather than one more attempt to change yourself.
  2. It is honest and continues because even when life is very hard, you are worth improving on.
  3. It recognizes what you can do and accepts what you cannot do.
  4. It accepts your genuine effort and knows that sometimes enough is really enough. 
  5. It is how we live through what feels like the mud and guts of our reality.
  6. It makes space for self compassion, even when we invest much of our time in for the welfare of others. It does not sacrifice who we are for another person. 
  7. It makes room for self discovery and for our own identity alongside the identity and needs of others. Even when who we are, what we believe or what we do is different or even upsetting to those we care about.
  8. It is not blinded by positive thinking or denial. Empowering hope pays attention without becoming by what we see.
  9. It makes time to be open to our present along with investing in our potential.

To read more about hope, see my article “The 9 Ways that Hope Will Make Your Load a Little Lighter.”

• • •

About Wendy Edey: The Hope Lady writes about life from a hopeful perspective. Wendy Edey shares her experience with hope work, being hopeful, hopeful people, hopeful language and hope symbols. Read about things that turned out better than expected and impossible things that became possible. Read about hoping, coping, and moping in stories about disability, aging, care-giving and child development.

Keep it Real

Photo by Gamze Bozkaya on Unsplash

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