Prowess: My Inner “Bad Wolf”

Last night, I had a dream.  It was the kind of dream that pulled from different areas of my waking life.  From the slight increase in the numbers appearing on my bathroom scale to scheduling eco-friendly moving boxes for our upcoming relocation, random thoughts and ideas presented themselves graphically in my sleeping mind’s eye.

While most of the visual elements faded into the background upon my awakening, there was one that stuck out. An image that was repeated throughout the dream in various forms. It was a word that was engraved in the sand on a beach, the name of our bed and breakfast and spray-painted on an old brick wall.

The word was prowess.


  1. Skill or expertise in an activity or field.
  2. Bravery in battle.
valor – gallantry – valour – bravery – courage – heroism

The sprinkling of the word into my dream reminded me of the “Bad Wolf” story arc of Doctor Who.  In short, the phrase “Bad Wolf” first appeared in episode one of the 2005 series and was used in every story of that season.  It was eventually revealed that the “Bad Wolf” was actually the Doctor’s companion, Rose Tyler, who acquired godlike power after absorbing the energy of the time vortex in an attempt to help The Doctor defeat his arch-enemy, the Daleks (“The Parting of the Ways” episode).  According to the story, she spread the words “Bad Wolf” throughout time and space as clues to help her past self save The Doctor.

“I am the Bad Wolf. I create myself. I take the words. I scatter them . . . in time and space. A message to lead myself here.” — Rose Tyler, in “Parting of the Ways” (Doctor Who)

Which induced my first train of thoughts this morning as I was heating up the water for my pour over coffee — “Am I prowess? What does prowess mean to me? What about me would I define as prowess?”

In his book, “Train Your Brain for Success”, Roger Siep points out that the language of memory is images.  The more you visualize information, the easier it is to recall.  He says that memory and even goal setting depends on the image you have in your head.  The more action and emotion associated with it, the more you will retain.

So, what does all of this mean? Prowess isn’t a word I use or hear on a daily basis.  But perhaps this is my way of introducing the concept into my daily life.   A way for me to focus on my skills or expertise — bringing forth the image that there is something in me fighting to get out.

“A message to lead myself here,” if you will.  I like that.  I plan to seek “prowess” in my day, work, writing or during cat feeding times.

Thank you, Doctor. I’ll take it from here.