2020 / April

Just remember that ant.

High Hopes by Frank Sinatra

Photo by Vlad Tchompalov on Unsplash

This week is part two of our High Hopes trilogy and the turn of Frank Sinatra. Originally in the 1959 film A Whole in the Head the song became the optimistic soundtrack for John Kennedy’s 1960 presidential campaign. The song starts with a challenge:

Next time your found with your chin on the ground, there a lot to be learned so look around.

You know what’s coming next. What are we looking for? A sign of amazing provision or ability? Not quite. I think the answer is actually anything. Just look. When we observe the world around us what we will often notice if we really look is not situations which are perfect or easy, but the seemingly impossible being undertaken by the apparently impossible through desire, determination and perseverance. This might just explain:

Just what makes that little old ant, think he’ll move that rubber tree plant.

What comes across is not the seriousness of the circumstances but the spirit of the response:

So, any time your gettin’ low. ‘Stead of lettin’ go. Just remember that ant.

Well, it’s really simple I guess if you’re an ant. Or for that matter a ram (similar idea later in the song). But what about us as humans? Our lives are so much more complicated, aren’t they? Well, I’m sure you won’t be surprised to hear that I think it’s a yes and a no here. Yes, our lives are more complex than that of an ant (Duh!). But the point remains, what can we learn from that ant in all its simplicity.

When I work with people, I’ve noticed that most, if not all of us, face challenge in life. The amount and level of challenge varies, but for some, even the smallest challenges can become an immovable obstacle. Yet for others, those who seem to thrive, they seem to be able to withstand and grow through even the most impossible of circumstances. What they seem to have is the desire, determination and perseverance of the ant. Even when their chin is on the ground, they make the decision to act. So, it seems, if this song is right, there could yet be some wisdom in us channelling our inner ant for a life of wellbeing.

Need to grow your resilience? Why not consider booking an appointment with the author, Dr Dave Wood?

Taken from the album:


Exploring and co-creating #wellbeing4all and community theology with individuals, businesses and communities. For the many, not the few.