According to Merriam Webster, the definition of malleable is the following:
1 : capable of being extended or shaped by beating with a hammer or by the pressure of rollers
2 a : capable of being altered or controlled by outside forces or influences
b : having a capacity for adaptive change
I have worn many ‘hats’ in my lifetime and one of those ‘hats’ was as a Certified Diamontologist and Certified Gemologist when I enjoyed a career in Jewelry Sales (a career that was a result of following my curiosity and passion).
One precious metal that I have always found fascinating is platinum, due to its strength and malleability. While it may not be the strongest metal known to mankind, make no mistake about its strength! It is not only strong; but durable and pure, To be considered platinum, a piece must contain 95% or more of the metal, making it one of the purest precious metals you can buy.
When platinum is scratched, the platinum gets moved from one place on the piece of jewelry to another, and it develops something called a patina finish. This type of finish will make your jewelry look like an antique. Platinum’s metal can be moved back in place with polishing because it is not actually losing metal like white gold.
How cool is this!
Physically, platinum is heavy, soft, malleable (easy to work—only silver and gold are easier to shape), and ductile (easy to draw into wires) and has a fairly high melting point (~1770°C or 3220°F). Chemically, it’s often described as a noble metal because it is so unreactive. It doesn’t even react with oxygen in air so it doesn’t rust or tarnish. It’s also reasonably resistant to attack from acids. Unreactive! Now, this is awesome!
….Now, I’ve said all this to create one thought for the day.
The ability to be strong, while at the same time, becoming malleable, may sound contradictory, but that’s exactly what Platinum does.
Just think how remarkable this is!
Strong, yet movable!
Like a mighty Oak tree who gets toppled due to its inability to sway with the wind, we, too, should strive to be strong, durable and yet movable. A Willow tree adapts by moving with the wind rather than resisting!
When we are ‘scratched’ and marred due to outside forces; we must learn to have the rare ability to ‘move’ from one place to another with grace, ease and willingness.
Strength is cool. But when we add the ability to be ‘moved back’ into place with a just bit of ‘polishing’ without losing our ‘metal’ (spirit) is beyond amazing. I like to think of ‘Self-Care’ as polishing.
There will always be outside forces that erode, scratch, and put pressure on us. Learning to ‘go with the flow’ and having the capacity for adaptive change is a survival skill.
Getting strong is admirable. Maintaining strength takes work. Learning to become malleable in the process is practically a super power
Something to think about!