Reflections on Meaning and Power in the Midst of Change

Observing the aftermath of recent storms, I step outside my back door and notice numerous dead limbs scattered on the ground. Over the past ten days, we experienced the remnants of Hurricane Frances and Ivan. Despite the manageable winds and abundant rain, these storms have taken their toll, causing more damage than I have the time to fully comprehend at the moment.

Hurricanes, nature’s way of thinning the trees, remind me of a conversation I had with a park ranger during a visit to the Florida Everglades in the early 1980s. As we sailed along the water bank, he pointed out the tangled mass of trees, millions of them, and explained that if left unchecked, they could become their own worst enemies. “That’s why we sometimes hope for a hurricane,” he remarked.

This reflection on nature’s selective process parallels the concept of meaning and marketing. Each of us possesses a unique context of meaning in which we conduct our work. Undoubtedly, you also have your own meaning and purpose. Why do you engage in your work, and what are you ultimately striving for? Perhaps it is “success,” but how do you define it?

These questions about meaning likely have answers that are deeply ingrained within you. I acknowledge and honor the significance of your personal meaning, whatever it may be. It is an essential part of who you are, born out of your hard work, struggles, and individual gifts. Your meaning aligns with your personality and talents, making it truly irreplaceable, just like you.

If your current meaning satisfies you and fuels your motivation each day, hold on to it tightly. Embrace its uniqueness and revel in its positive impact. Congratulations on finding a meaningful path that resonates with you!

However, if you find yourself uncertain, dissatisfied, restless, or hungry for a deeper meaning, I invite you to read further. You might be pleasantly surprised and find yourself embarking on an exciting journey.

Alternatively, if you’re simply curious and crave a metaphorical hurricane to shake things up, to loosen your boundaries, and to facilitate growth and expansion in your endeavors, then hold tight. Brace yourself, as a grand storm is on the horizon—a massive, transformative one. Secure your metaphorical hatches, reinforce your metaphorical windows, and fortify your metaphorical doors because you’ll need it.

Meaning encompasses spiritual, psychic, and intuitive aspects. It can be challenging to express, but you know it’s there. It becomes your religion, even if you don’t adhere to a specific faith. Whatever binds you together, drives you to be who you are—that is your religion; that is your meaning.

As you present your products or programs to the world, proclaim boldly, “Beware, for I am coming! I am powerful! I am dynamite!”

And if you haven’t uttered these words, perhaps it’s time you did.

So, Mr. and Mrs. Meaning, how much power lies within your personal meaning and purpose? Is it abundant or modest? Only you can determine that. You possess as much power as you desire or are willing to seize. Grab hold of as much power as you need to accomplish your tasks, conserving energy for future endeavors. In your business, it’s crucial to think about the long-term future and plan accordingly.

Now, let me distribute some helmets. These special helmets are made of a titanium-steel alloy, covered with a layer of rubber and plastic measuring 1/3 inch. They are beautifully painted and customized to your liking. Are you ready?

These helmets represent your imaginations. Have you put them on? You do have an imagination, don’t you? If not, just pretend you do. It works just as effectively.

Are you having fun? Not sure? Why the uncertainty?

Suddenly, you find yourself transported to Patricia Smith’s third-grade classroom in Old Richmond School, Felix County, NC, in the year 1953. A student gazes out the window toward Pilot Knob, located approximately 20 miles away, eagerly awaiting recess. Even the pebbles on the window sill share the same anticipation.

But boredom is unnecessary because we know what lies ahead, don’t we?

Other articles in this series: “The Eye of the Storm,” “The WILL, the Links, the Trigger.”

About the Author: Paul Snell resides in Lexington, NC, with his wife, Jean, and their younger son, Steven, alongside their faithful dog, Blackie. After serving as a Presbyterian USA minister, Paul transitioned to full-time network marketing in 2002. At the age of 61, he was recently diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, with Attention Deficit Disorder as a minor component. With the support of his mentors at the PowerShift Loop, Paul advocates for the treatment of mental illnesses, including substance abuse. Go, Larry King Live!