Perseverance and Fortitude: How 3 Tattoos Changed My Life

Just recently I posted a quote on Twitter (since that seems to be the social media platform I use the most) that came to me at random.

“All the advice in the world can make you a better writer, but it won’t make you great. Greatness comes from born talent and self-discipline.”

~ so sayeth my muse

The world and its inter-webs are so over-saturated with advice, much of it good, some of it bad, that it makes it hard to hear our own thoughts in the “author” process. There’s advice about how to write, how to edit, how to live, how to market, how to promote, how to not promote, how to interact, how to breathe. It just gets stifling.

In my manic Occult/Metaphysics obsession, I got these Zibu tattoostattoos on my forearm. They are three symbols from the Zibu language, an angelic language that was channeled in by Debbie Z Almstedt. 

From top to bottom, the first one is “Listen Within.”

The second is “Creativity.”

And the third is “Fortitude.”

At first, I believed only the Creativity to be about my writing, when in actually all three of them pertain to my Life’s path work.

In order to be successful at anything, in any vocation, hard work takes precedence. Persistence. Relentlessness. Sheer willpower. Stubbornness. Fortitude. Call it what you will, but perseverance is a HUGE chunk of any battle. Be it debt, a vocation, a degree, a relationship, etc. Perseverance. Stick to your ticket, Harry. Stick to your ticket. Sorry for the HP reference, but your ticket is your ability to stay on track.

It’s going to suck. You’re going to hate it. Your inner child is going to kick and scream on the floor inside of your gut, but you’re not going to have a choice.

SisyphusYes, you have to “suck it up and drive on,” as my ex-military husband likes to say.

Anything you want in life comes from hard work. And while Rome wasn’t built in a day, all roads do lead there. It may not be today, or tomorrow, but it can be one day. It will be one day. Fortitude. 

Just keep driving on.

When I stumbled onto this language, I felt compelled to get these three tattooed on my body. Not any of the 40 others, but these. And it’s only now that I’m truly understanding how they all three complement each other. I should have tattooed a pie chart instead.2

Fortitude, the mental and emotional capacity to endure great adversity. Or torture, be it self-inflicted or otherwise. Aka self-discipline. Perseverance. Drive. Motivation.

Creativity, the ability to dream, design, invent, create, build, and/or enact a world of my own making.

And lastly, Listen Within. Listen to yourself, your inner voice. Self-trust. Assurance. Belief. KNOW that the path you are on is the right one. Believe in that and all the pieces will fall into place.

My level of understanding increased when I stumbled upon this equation, “Congruence + Self-Love = Authenticity,” taken from the 6 Seconds blog (check their site out for more great advice).

To be happy in life, you have to be authentic. You have to be true to yourself and to the world around you. To be successful as an author, you have to present your most authentic self to your readers, in your writing, and in the media. You are the brand.

So this year, much to the dismay of others, I got 3 new tattoos on a whim (I have plenty more) and 4 months later, I am just now understanding how this all fits together in the grand scheme of life. In my life in particular.

My creativity is worth nothing if I don’t trust my gut. And trusting my gut is worth nothing if I don’t have the endurance to push the boulder up the hill. Nothing comes without a price. Not love, not magic, and least of all, not success.

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