“Desperate times breed desperate measures.”

– William Shakespeare

My husband expressed recently in delight that “food tastes so much better when you are hungry”.

This got me thinking, he is probably right. No matter what food it is.

There are surveys sometimes asking, ‘What is your least favourite food?’

Without a doubt, for me, Brussels sprouts tops the list. There could be other funky foods out there that I would find disgusting too but right now the tiny stinky cabbages are #1.

So, what would it take for me to eat them?

A big bowl of them?


Lost in the desert for days with no food the little sprouts would start to look good compared to biting into a cactus or a dead rattle snake. Survival would be at stake.

When choices are offered, sometimes you get a different perspective that was not in your arsenal before.

It turns into what is the better of two evils.

In life you either need inspiration or desperation.

You usually don’t turn away from fun things.

You hesitate on tasks you find difficult, unpleasant, aversive or just plain boring or stressful.

If a task feels especially overwhelming or provokes significant anxiety, it’s often easiest to avoid it.

What Are You Avoiding?

What things in life could you possibly be avoiding due to the discomfort they provide?

  1. Exercising?
  2. Dieting?
  3. Unresolved relationships?
  4. Quitting smoking?
  5. Addictions?
  6. Debt?
  7. Dead End Job?

For me it’s dieting. The deprivation of it all.

Food is my only vice in life. So, when I give that up, I have nothing left except the residual effects of over indulgence.

Looking back 10 years in my journal, entries looked like this.

  • This is the year; I have to lose this extra weight.
  • Here I am again attempting to lose ½ of myself.
  • I’m really pumped this time. I’ve found the perfect diet.
  • My new motto, its not losing weight its about letting it go. I’ll try that.


Why did I fail year after year?

Was it the diet? My attitude? Some hidden unresolved trauma? Or, maybe I wasn’t desperate enough?

I was not hungry enough until….

  • My health was compromised.

Its not about vanity or fitting into new clothes or even a trip to Maui.

It became about quality of life.

“Out of the fires of desperation burn hope and solidarity.”

– Sharon Burrow

I was so hungry for a better life ‘I had to bite into dieting and exercise like it was my last meal because the alternative was not palatable’.

“Desperation becomes unsustainable.”

– Cheryl Strayed

We become desperate when things seem out of our control – our finances, our health, our relationships.

It takes courage to initiate change. You don’t always know if the change will solve your problem or bring more distaste.

In my analogy, I would have known the bowl of Brussels sprouts would have been a better choice, in theory, than eating a dead rattlesnake or cactus that could have been deadly.

Other choices like ending a relationship or changing jobs could be scary. Sometimes you have to weigh out the alternatives.

Two Thirsty Frogs

There were once two lost frogs.

They were beginning to get very thirsty.

They came upon a lovely pond. They were so parched, they hop-sprinted over to the pond and leaped into it.

Soon they realized they had made a big mistake. This was not a pond at all, but a bucket of cream! Thick dense cream that was beginning to pull them under!

They tried to climb out but the cream made them slip and slide.

The one little frog began to give up paddling and sank to the bottom.

The lonely little frog kept treading and treading and treading and after a while, the cream started to thicken. He kept going, and eventually, the cream hardened into butter. All the little fellow had to do then was hop out of the bucket and he was on his way.

This story demonstrates the importance of perseverance and never giving up. As well as how one’s attitude to a situation can either make you or break you.

“Remaining calm in times of desperation, makes way for opportunity.”

– Simon Sinek

When you see tragedy strike, be it earthquake, flood or hurricane, you hear stories of people stepping up out of their comfort zone and finding hidden powers to help their neighbours in distress.

The human spirit in basic form is programmed to help one another. You see it in the animal kingdom so why wouldn’t we see it in humans.

Maybe helping neighbours that you never spoke to before.

The fences of intimidation, differences in religion or politics don’t matter. Fences you might not have crossed in better times.

When human lives are at stake, we are all cut from the same cloth. We are all God’s children.

“Usually, it takes a state of emergency, to throw us into desperation. It’s too bad it has to do that, but human beings are so slothful in their mind that it takes an emergency. Something arises in desperation and then they do….it brings out that real thing that you are. It shows what you are made of…It usually pulls out all the good things that are in you.”

– William Marrion Branham

“Be hungry for success, hungry to make your mark, hungry to be seen and heard and hungry to have an effect.  And as you move up and become successful, make sure to also be hungry to help others.”

– Arnold Schwarzenegger

Take on life’s challenges when they are small, don’t wait until you are desperate.

Desmond Tutu once wisely said that “there is only one way to eat an elephant: a bite at a time.” What he meant by this is that everything in life that seems daunting, overwhelming, and even impossible can be accomplished gradually by taking on just a little at a time.

Remember …life will taste sweeter with each bite of success.

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