(Courtesy of Jill Blakeway)
We are at the threshold of a New Year.
I know. Where did 2014 go?
We say this every year and yet we still ask the same question. It seems that time goes by too fast. Then again, I guess this thought could be argued depending on what kind of year we’ve had. If it was a good year, it probably did speed by. But if it wasn’t, if we were forced to deal with a lot of difficult challenges in our life, time may have lagged on. As in, “Will this year ever end?”
Nevertheless, we have little choice in the matter. It doesn’t help to worry about the things that we weren’t able to achieve or the little idiosyncrasies that took over our hopes and aspirations. Either way the change is going to happen. So we might as well buckle up and enjoy the ride.
It’s a brand new year and a fresh slate—a chance to hit the restart button! An opportunity to take on a positive view or perhaps set new goals for a brighter future.
Are you feeling inspired? After all, inspiration is the spark that can set our new goals on fire. If you’re looking for a little encouragement, let me share with you something that I know you’ll find inspiring.
Unbroken and Undefeated.
What do these words mean to you?
First impression may tell us they mean the same thing. But if we take a closer look, we find that even though these two words share a parallel meaning, they embrace a whole different significance unto their own.
When we think of Unbroken, we think of someone who is constant, steady, undying, someone who has run the race with endurance. Someone like Olympian and war hero Louis Zamperini, for which the book and new movie was written about.
On the other hand, Undefeated can take on a whole different meaning, that of someone who is unbeaten, invincible, determined and steadfast. Someone who is resilient, a survivalist, someone like author Laura Hillenbrand.
Why do I say this?
It’s not like Laura Hillenbrand has written a plethora of novels. Quite the opposite actually. She has written only two.
Seabiscuit and Unbroken.
Equally successful, both books revolve around subjects whose lives were found Unbroken and Undefeated. Both were stories that told an unforgettable journey into extremity, a testament to the resilience of both animal and man.
But what some of you may or may not know is that Laura Hillenbrand suffers from a very debilitating illness. It is what’s kept her from writing more than two books thus far. No telling what the results would be if the woman was healthy.
Laura suffers from what is now known as ME or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. For her, most days are considered a success if she manages to take a shower on her feet. Even during a two year period while writing her current novel “Unbroken”, which took her almost a decade to write, she never left her home. In fact, for several of those months, she never left her room.
Yes, in the carefully calibrated world of Laura Hillenbrand, every reaction has an equivalent and opposite reaction. For an example, she might agree to an interview but skip a shower. Her energy is finite, and she typically has enough for one activity per day. Yet, her writing has been a riposte to anyone who had ever associated CFS with laziness.
Many journalists have been quick to point out the irony of Ms. Hillenbrand’s work: “A woman for whom walking around the block constitutes a marathon writes about the finest specimens of physical endurance.”
A woman who has proven to be Unbroken and Undefeated.
And therein lies the story behind the stories: Laura Hillenbrand’s unique ability to tune into each of her characters and show how they overcame the many tragedies in their life. They say to write what you know. If that is true, I think Laura Hillenbrand’s example is a wonderful source for true inspiration!
So worry not my friends. Do not hold back. Hit the reset button. Go after those new goals with passion and enjoy the ride!
So what do you think? Are you ready for the New Year? Have you set new goals for the future? Have you read one of Laura Hillenbrand’s books? Do you remember watching the movie “Seabiscuit”? Have you had the opportunity to see “Unbroken” yet?
Cheers everyone! I hope that life is treating you well. And as always, thank you so much for all your support and wonderful comments!