We all begin life as survivors
The odds of us making it into this world are 1 out of 400 trillion, so every day you breathe, you are a survivor already!
Perhaps you have already survived many losses throughout your life, the loss of a career, a loved one, your own health or loss of a relationships or financial security. What doesn’t break you, makes you, they say.
Let’s take a closer look at the picture of this young man above with no arms and no legs, completing a turn on a skate board during a 1/2 marathon race in the 2017 Ottawa Army Run. He looks happy, free and confident.
There is a secret to surviving just about any obstacle thrown your way; some call this gratitude or appreciation for life at all costs. Every single day you wake up, start your day in gratitude and before you go to bed at night, give thanks and gratitude for things that you experienced that very day. Writing gratitudes down in a journal is highly recommended so that you can review on those days when you really need a little boost. Even on your worst days, find something to be grateful for.
I have been mentored by several millionaires who all believe in the “attitude of gratitude” principle. When you focus on what you don’t have, you attract more of the same, so focus on the positive and be grateful for the lessons learned. Remember that like attracts like.
When this lesson was first taught to me, I found it hard to put into practice at first, so if you are doubting it, just know that is normal. Surender to the process and judge after wards if this slight change makes a difference in your life. You can turn your worst day into a great day with this principle.
As an example, I remember a story by David Wood, personal development trainer and millionaire who shared with his audience that he had been in a very bad car accident while driving his young sons sitting in the back of his car. They had been broadsided at an intersection and his car was totalled. David immediately checked to see if his boys were okay and they were. That was his main and only concern. Then out of the corner of his eye he could see the other driver standing outside his own car examining the damages and appeared to be irate. David calmly approved the other driver who was really upset and what he had done, and of course the damages to both cars. David, in his calm demeaner said to the guy “are you okay?”. The guy looked stunned and said “yes!”. The guy looked at David straight in the eyes and said “Are you not upset?” David replied, “No, my boys and I are unhurt, and that is the most important thing here to me today.”
This calm reaction to a very bad accident was able to calm this upset driver down, and as David put it, probably changed his whole world that day. Most people might blow up at a situation like this and respond very differently, but David lives by this belief. I have never forgotten that story and lesson. Look for the positive in everything. Live with an attitude of gratitude.
Back to the young man skateboarding with no limbs. Surely he must have had so much to be angry about when his limbs were blown off with an exploded IED. The months it took him to learn how to adapt and heal alone would have been agonizing. We take for granted a lot of things but losing your limbs is not something anyone plans for. Imagine how upset this young soldier must have been. Yet, I was left in awe of this young veteran because I could see pure happiness on his face as he skated around that turn, while I was struggling with a few blisters on my feet that hot, Fall day running my own race. Suddenly I was feeling grateful instead of agonizing over the pain in my feet. He obviously found his reason to live a full life and likely if asked I am sure he would reply that he was just simple grateful to be alive.
What are you grateful for today? What negative thoughts occupy your mind when you wake up? What can you turn around into a positive ones?
My world is full of gratitude and I practice that “attitude of gratitude” daily. Even on my most challenging days I do my best to look at the bright side. That’s all that is expected, nothing more or less. In 2012 I lost the love of my life, my late husband Luc of 34 years to Cancer. There hasn’t been a day since that I regretted anything that we did in life, or that he was gone too soon. I was simply grateful for the years we spent together because we experienced love the way it was intended.
As I write this I want you to find it in your heart to forgive someone, or forget something petty. It does not serve you to harbour anger or resentment. We have one life to live. Live your own life on your own terms and always be grateful.
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Have a wonderful day!!