hope, have hope, create hope, hopeful, karyn shanks md, empower yourself


Dear One,

Someone once told me that hope is just wishing that things could be different than they are. They didn’t want to have “false” hope after so many struggles and disappointments.

I hear this concern expressed by my clients—many have suffered greatly. Promises were made. The positive outcomes did not come through.

Someone else told me (essentially) that hope was for sissies. In their spiritual arrogance they proclaimed that true believers in infinite possibilities don’t need hope. They know. They likened hope to a child’s fantasy—wishing for what one does not yet have.

I disagree with both of them.

Hope is how we humans (and, by the way, sometimes we are sissies—pain and struggle can do that to us) make THE CHOICE to trust in those infinite possibilities.

We want to believe. And trust. We suffer and question everything. It’s hard.

So we make the choice. Through that choice we link ourselves to grace. It’s all within our reach, no matter what, even in our blindness.

Through my own difficult times I’ve learned about what hope is. How I had to choose to believe the solutions would come. Even when I couldn’t see what the solutions were, who would deliver them, or when they’d arrive, I made the decision—I made the decision—to trust they would come.

Then I took action. Hope is not a passive process. The decision for hope energized the actions I took that eventually led to the solutions I needed.

That’s hope.

Have a Beautiful day!


Karyn Shanks MD


Karyn Shanks, MD, is a physician who lives and practices in Iowa City. Her work is inspired by the revolutionary science of Functional Medicine, body-mind wisdom, and the transformational journeys of thousands of clients over her twenty-eight year career. She believes that the bones of healing are in what we do for ourselves.

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