“At some point we will all confront a dark moment in life. If not the passing of a loved one, then something else that crushes your spirit and leaves you wondering about your future. In that dark moment, reach deep inside yourself and be your very best.”
Admiral William McRaven
You might not know Naval Admiral William H. McRaven, ninth commander of U.S. Special Operations Command. You might have heard about the famous speech he delivered at the University-wide Commencement at The University of Texas at Austin on May 17 to the Class of 2014. “What starts here changes the world.”
I am not that much into the military. But that speech and his “few suggestions that may help you on your way to a better a world”, the ten lessons he shared to change the world for the better, are some of the best motivational insights I’ve heard from anyone.
I have often wondered why we ignore some truths we know and understand. Those everybody knows.
Can you think of an example?
Here are a few I can think of.
We know that we are destroying the planet and we know what we need to do to save it — but we ignore it. We continue buying cheap, throw away clothes; we continue buying expensive smartphones made with rare metals destroying the environment when they are harvested and when they are disposed of. We know Old Black Joe’s still picking cotton.
We know that there are people who need our help which we don’t give to them. Because the money isn’t there.
We are ignoring those truths because we are busy with life. Because we don’t have the motivation to do anything about what we all know is wrong.
It takes people who are motivated enough to affect change.
Because they will not let go.
They will make their bed every morning, find someone to paddle with them, measure people by the size of their heart, they will keep moving forward in the knowledge that life is not fair, they will fail, but slide the obstacles head first, they will not back down, step up when times are toughest, sing when they are up to their neck in mud, and they will never, never give up.
Pádraig is preparing for the Iron Month Challenge.
He walks for nearly an hour every day.
And today, he broke his personal best, his PB, cycling 5k in 45 minutes. In his second cycle for the day.
There is no giving up.
A touch of madness brightens up life. – Un brin de folie égaye la vie.
As another great French proverb says:
In order to achieve great things,
we must live as though we were never going to die.
Pour exécuter de grandes choses,
il faut vivre comme si on ne devait jamais mourir.