Recently, this update appeared in my Facebook feed:
What is resilience? I get a text saying the sidewalk is all ripped up outside the [office] that I will not make it in. I pivot to work at [another of our offices]. I get off the wheelchair Uber at St. Clair to take the subway to Queen St. Elevator broken and have to take the subway to Union (because King St subway not accessible) to head back north to catch the Queen St elevator north. Path elevator broke so took an extended detour. I’m here at work ready to make a difference. How was your morning?
If that sounds like a convoluted way to get to work; it is. The person who posted it is my friend Dave Dame, who has been living and working in Toronto for the past couple years. What adds to this story is knowing Dave has Cerebral Palsy and gets around Toronto in his power wheelchair.
How often, have I taken things for granted, and when faced with barriers I just give up or try something easier. How often, have I not made a difference in this world, simply because the universe didn’t make it easy for me.
Take for example, when I first decided to shift to the world self-employment. I did not know what level of adversity I would bump into. In spite of some early successes, I started to learn what it meant to hit roadblocks such as: “No” or “Sorry not now.” There were days I wondered if I’d done the right thing, and perhaps I should get a ‘real’ job.
The good news is I am still self-employed despite all the barriers life put in my way. I love the life I’m living, and feel like I am making a difference in the world. I still face barriers and challenges, and what I’ve learned is the more you go around roadblocks, the easier it gets.
Thought of the week
The roadblocks you face in life are NOT to blame when you don’t achieve your goals. The stories you choose to tell yourself about life’s challenges ARE what holds you back.
What if Dave had told himself there was no hope of reaching the office that morning? What if Dave looked at a broken elevator and said: “I guess it’s hopeless”? I imagine all the roadblocks may have made for a frustrating commute that morning. However, despite all those challenges Dave kept moving forward and accomplished his goal of getting to work.
So what’s your story? When you hit a roadblock in life; do you give up or do you choose to find another way? If your goals in life are important, then regardless of what gets in your way, never give up. Life may try to trip you up on your journey. Instead of giving up, try asking yourself “well if this isn’t the right path, then what am I going to try next?”
It’s your story, fand you get to choose how you write it. Please, don’t finish the story with the phrase “it’s impossible!”
Dave has the best sense of humor! Determination + passion + openness + humor = resilience. What else would you add to the equation?