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Life doesn’t always go according to plan.
Just ask Isaiah Austin.
A 7 foot 1 centre from Baylor University, Austin was a talented basketball player who had already overcome a significant eye injury that required a prosthetic eye to produce a remarkable season and place himself in contention to be drafted to the NBA.
However in the days leading up to the draft, a routine physical revealed that he has a rare genetic condition known as Marfan’s syndrome, which placed his heart at risk of rupturing if he was to play professional sport. This meant that Austin had to retire at the age of 20 before his career even had a chance to start.
It wasn’t his fault.
He had no say in it.
His dreams and everything that he had worked hard to achieve were destroyed just days before they were to be realised.
It’s easy to turn on the news or read about the latest events and become despondent about the world and our future.
It’s tempting to gain a perspective of the world that is as bleak as what we see around us.
Fear, chaos, hopelessness and despair are very powerful and can easily become our domain if we aren’t watchful.
Yet, in the midst of such a climate of negativity, I have hope.
Because even in the darkest night, the bleakest sky and the most desperate situation, the smallest light shines a long way.
Let me encourage you to play your part and be that light.
This past week, I had one of those unpleasant dentist trips that resulted in having one of my back teeth removed.
Of course, the offending tooth will never grow back. It’s gone for good.
Great white sharks however, have between 5 and 7 rows of teeth and when one breaks off, another one grows in its place.
They have an inexhaustible supply of teeth and don’t really care if one is used up.
Some people treat life as if ideas are human teeth.
That first step that you take towards your goals:
… is the hardest.
… is the scariest.
… comes with the most excuses.
… is the most over-analysed.
… is often a step into the uncomfortable and the unknown.
… and more than anything else, it’s probably the most important one.
Anyone who has ever achieved anything significant in life has experienced the unpleasant feeling of rejection.
From a young age, writer Steven King would nail his rejection letters on his wall.
He knew that it was part of the deal and he was determined not to let it stop him from achieving his dream of becoming a professional writer.
Great salespeople get rejected more than anyone else, and are able to keep going.
Great artists, musicians and writers generally have a long file of rejection letters and bad reviews, but are able to keep going.
And I suspect that if we can all remember the following every time we get rejected, we are going to be OK.
So remember, when you rejected… Read the rest of this entry »
Let me encourage you today to increase your expectations from all aspects of your life.
Expect great things for your career or business.
Expect great things for your relationships.
Expect great things for your health, finances and spirituality.
By raising your expectations, you are raising the possibilities.
You increase your awareness of the fantastic opportunities that are out there and you are more likely to identify things that you can be grateful for in every aspect of your life.
However, expectations are not enough.
Every child needs to be able to play freely.
They deserve the right to laugh, frolic and dance.
They should to be able to optimistically use their imagination, without wondering what is on the other side of the fence that contains them.
No child should live in detention centres.
Every child needs access to a great education.
They deserve to be able learn, grow and flourish in a safe and supportive environment.
They should be able to dream of a future where they get to utilise their unique skills doing something magnificent, without wondering if they will ever be free.
No child should live in detention centres.
Highland cattle have to be my favourite breed of cattle, partly due to their Scottish heritage (like my wife’s) and partly due to their rugged looks.
However, there’s more than meets the eye with these iconic animals.
I was researching them with Hayden for his animal blog and as I read about how well suited they are for thriving in difficult situations, I realised how much we can learn from these magnificent beasts, especially when we are going through bad times.
So, what can we learn from highland cattle? Read the rest of this entry »
In the 1780’s, a boat shipwrecked off the coast of Hadawax Island off the coast of Alaska, and a few stowaway Norway rats made their way onto the island, resulting in a mass infestation so great that the island was re-named Rat Island.
After their arrival, the rats decimated the local bird population, eating eggs, chicks and even adult birds.
In September 2008, a group called Island Conservation, intervened and successfully removed all the rats from the island. Don’t ask me how they did it, I just have images in my head of a lot of mousetraps and some dude running around with a big net.
Anyway, they achieved their goal and as a result, much of the local bird life has recovered, with many species returning to the island that haven’t been seen there for many years.
It’s an extraordinary recovery and a great result for wildlife conservation.
We all have rats in our lives.
It’s easy to develop bad habits that start small and slowly get bigger until they take over our lives and we become defined by them.
I was walking down a busy street and noticed dozens of people bumping into one another and invading each other’s personal space.
It was crowded and it was frustrating to be a part of such a mass of bodies.
I don’t know why, but I looked up and saw a lone pigeon flying against a beautiful blue sky.
As we silly humans hustled and bustled, this pigeon had the entire sky to itself.
We live in a very competitive world.