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When Life Is Difficult, You Still "Gotta Have Heart."

Updated on February 24, 2011

What comes to mind when you hear this phrase?

Gotta have heart.

I've heard the expression a few times throughout my life. Thinking of Valentine's Day - with hearts showing up everywhere - I thought I would go with the spirit of the season and take a journey.

A journey? Yes, indeed! However, this journey should not be taken only once a year; it's a journey we should continually strive to embark upon.

You are welcome to take the journey with me. In fact, I would be thoroughly delighted if you did and, to be quite honest, I'm going on the presumption that you will join me. I have a feeling we may be in for a few delightful surprises. Are you excited? I am.

Gotta have heart!

What exactly does it mean?

Can it only be interpreted one way or does it have multiple meanings?

Let's find out!

What ideas are swirling through your head? I would love to know the thoughts that are swimming, crawling, jumping or flying through your head when you hear the expression Gotta have heart.


Compassion

Sometimes we come across people who are down on their luck, or so the saying goes. We see them struggling in frigid temperatures without proper outerwear. They eat scraps left over from another person's plate. They sleep in the strangest places and often, in warmer seasons of the year, they try to engage us with their talents - hoping we will provide them with a dollar or two so their day would be a little more like ours.

Let's put ourselves in their positions. How would we feel if we didn't have a sensible home to live in, didn't know when our next meal would come and didn't know how long our existing clothing would have to last before receiving other hand-me-downs?

It doesn't sound pleasant, does it? In this case, I believe that we really gotta have heart.

We need to give to less fortunate people while remembering that they all don't live in third world countries; some are closer than we often realize.

Photo credit: Living Ministry.

Heart-warming book - from Amazon

Achieving purpose in the social sector - isn't that the dream of every person who feels compassion for others and their situations? Life shouldn't always revolve around money. After all, we need money to live but, if we live for money, life becomes empty really fast.

Sometimes we need to carry our heart in our hands to be effective in helping others.

Sometimes we need to carry our heart in our hands to be effective in helping others.
Sometimes we need to carry our heart in our hands to be effective in helping others.

Tomorrow

You're likely wondering what's coming next, aren't you? After all, what could tomorrow possibly have to do with the phrase gotta have heart?

Well, the first thing we have to do is look at today. What happened in our lives today? Was every emotion lighthearted and filled with contentment? Did we go around with smiles on our faces all day long because our souls were flooded with joy and peace?

Granted, some days are like those just mentioned; there isn't a dark cloud in sight. However, many days, there is something - no matter how great or small to someone else - which upsets our equilibrium, so to speak. Sometimes we feel down and become upset because of circumstances which may be brought on by the words and actions of others.

In such situations, we truly gotta have heart because we should look toward tomorrow with anticipation. When today ends - no matter how good it was - we have to look at tomorrow from the perspective that it will be better than today.

Photo credit: Pet Mania Magazine

Anything new?

Has the phrase begun to take on new meaning yet?

Are you enjoying the journey we are taking?

I am.

Faith and hope

during times of illness

Let's explore this heart-rendering topic for a few brief moments.

Chances are that, when we are not feeling well for a temporary period of time, our outlooks can still be bright - even if we wallow in misery for a few days. We can try looking at the bright side, that we can rest and relax while having someone else take care of us for a change.

If we are diagnosed with Diabetes or blood pressure issues, our diets, exercise and some forms of medication can help us live our lives with relative normalcy.

If we have lung disease, such as Asthma, it can be very difficult; not being able to anticipate when a trigger may present itself - leaving us breathless - is no laughing matter, especially for those of us who react severely.

However, if we learned we had Cancer, Tuberculosis (TB) or AIDS, we would feel differently. We would look at tomorrow as a scary place to be; we'd much prefer to continue living in today. However, we are not granted that choice because today has no choice but to say good-bye.

There is something we should remember, though. Faith and hope make a lovely couple; they walk hand-in-hand helping us to feel better about the trials we will face and endure - even through the most painful of circumstances.

We really gotta have heart because things could be worse. If we become ill when we're in our 80s, we can be thankful that we lived a full life. If we become ill and our children are grown with happy families of their own, we can be thankful their futures are secure.

If we become ill at a young age, we may wish we didn't have to look death in the eye but, if the situation comes that we must, we can be thankful we had a chance to say good-bye to our loved ones. Not every healthy person who died had that opportunity so we gotta have heart and accept the gift we were granted. Besides, if our souls are prepared to enter the afterlife, in physical death we are more blessed than those who are still alive dealing with the ups and downs which time brings.

Sports

We begin the game with anticipation; our outlook's bright and we're going strong. We feel great - even on top of the world - as the fans cheer us in our efforts and respond with resounding applause when we score a few points.

Toward the middle of the game, we're not feeling as strong. We may be leading the game but our bodies are growing tired from all the energy we're expending. Gatorade and water are our best friends but, even then, we would like the opportunity to rest for greater periods than brief intermissions allow.

The end is in sight; we're approaching the game's finale. We'll be glad when it's over because, right now, we're having difficulty focusing on placing one foot in front of the other. Our muscles are beginning to ache and complain and we just want to get it over with.

We gotta have heart no matter how impossible it seems. We can look toward the crowd and draw our inspiration from them. Also, we can look to some point within ourselves - our families, our dreams, our goals - for that added boost of energy... and it never did anyone harm to whisper a prayer asking for strength from above.

One side of this mug says, "Gotta have heart!" The other states, "Life is what you make it."

Don't these two expressions go hand in hand? They are sure worth remembering and what better time than when you drink your first cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate for the day? Of course, you can still drink cold beverages with these mugs!

Then, in the evening, even if the day didn't work out as you hoped, you can still be reminded that life is still what you make it.


The brilliance of hearts - no matter their color - catches the attention of many people. They are bright and beautiful and represent the good feelings we carry in our hearts and souls.

This mug can be enjoyed any time of the year and can be passed along to a loved one who may need a word of encouragement. Knowing the gift came from you would truly place a smile on his/her face. "Gotta have heart" is a beautiful reminder that tomorrow just may be a better day.

It's easy to go through life being busy and not paying a lot of attention to others. However, sometimes we need to slow down and count our blessings - which will help us to reach out to those who are not as fortunate.

May this greeting card serve as a reminder.

Is there someone you would like to reach out to? Why not give them this beautiful card and write your own personal message inside?

Today is temporary; we will never get another day just like it. We may have other great days shared with wonderful people but it won't be the same as today.

Even if we are performing the same routines, we often see different people, have different conversations and have different thoughts swirling through our heads - so no two days are exactly the same. As such, we should embrace tomorrow with all its possibilities.


Everything we say and do shapes our future. Good deeds performed for others can mean the difference between people enjoying life or losing heart because life is such a struggle.

We may not think much of the kind words we speak but, to others, they are like springs of water to a thirsty soul. We may never know the great impact we have on others' lives; all we can do is treat people in ways we would like to be treated ourselves. This creates our Masterpiece.

Did you enjoy this lens? I certainly hope so. I hope you may think more about this phrase than you did before...and this journey is still in progress, so be sure to check back, from time to time, for recent insights and developments.

Thank you for bearing with me because, for some people, this lens was difficult to read...

This lens was blessed by a Squid Angel!

Would you like to visit other lenses of mine which have received Squid Angel blessings?

If so, please click on the angel above.

Image credit: Fun Munch

Gotta Have Heart Guestbook

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    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 6 years ago from Canada

      I am fluttering around the community organizations neighborhood today and so glad that I managed to stumble onto your "Gotta have heart" article. It was heartwarming.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Another great Lens.

    • AuthorNormaBudden profile image
      Author

      AuthorNormaBudden 7 years ago

      @Kelsey-Budden-16: You tell me. :)

    • Kelsey-Budden-16 profile image

      Kelsey-Budden-16 7 years ago

      Wow....do I need a heart?

    • AuthorNormaBudden profile image
      Author

      AuthorNormaBudden 7 years ago

      @OhMe: Thanks for your refreshing words. I was at my computer desiring to add another couple of Zazzle cards and wanted to come up with some quotes along the lines of "having heart." I'm glad you enjoyed the products and found a source of wisdom throughout the words of the lens.

    • AuthorNormaBudden profile image
      Author

      AuthorNormaBudden 7 years ago

      @RhondaAlbom: Thank you.

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Your "Gotta Have Heart" is filled with some valuable words of wisdom. I love your Zazzle products, too. Well done!

    • RhondaAlbom profile image

      Rhonda Albom 7 years ago from New Zealand

      nicely done

    • AuthorNormaBudden profile image
      Author

      AuthorNormaBudden 7 years ago

      @BarbRad: Yeah, it's too bad we couldn't lensroll lenses as soon as they are published...perhaps it will come, in time.

    • AuthorNormaBudden profile image
      Author

      AuthorNormaBudden 7 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks for the blessing, Beth. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Very nice lens on "gotta have heart". Now I'm singing the song! LOL 5*, blessed.

    • BarbRad profile image

      Barbara Radisavljevic 7 years ago from Templeton, CA

      I enjoyed it enough to lensroll it to my newest lens, as soon as I can.