Over the past year or so I have written numerous blogs describing remarkable people who’ve overcome immense obstacles and challenges in their lives.
Many of these folks have dragged themselves back from the deepest crevices of hopelessness and the darkest ravages of despair to become shining beacons for others to follow.
They all seem to have two traits in common.
The first is that they have all acquired a sense of modesty regarding their achievements and do not see themselves as having accomplished anything special.
They seemed genuinely surprised when they learn how inspirational their stories have been too many others.
Some were reluctant to even share their stories – simply because they felt they were “no big deal” – and the majority agreed to do so with only one small condition attached – that they remain anonymous.
The second is that they all – despite their natural reticence to do so –desperately want to reach out and share their “secret” with as many people as possible.
Their secret is, of course, their newfound understanding of the indomitability of the human spirit and the irrelevance of the height, width and depth of the obstacles that may be before us.
These folks remind me of several people I’ve met over the years who are long-time members of AA and who believe so deeply and profoundly in the benefits that their organization offers to those who reach out for help that they will “go anywhere, any place, anytime” to connect with and offer support, judgement-free friendship and a lifeline to anyone who asks for help.
The extraordinary people I have had the privilege of meeting and writing about have all, in their own words, told me of the sense of obligation they feel to share their newly acquired love of life with as many people as possible.
The only reward they seek is the indescribable exhilaration that comes from knowing you have made a difference in someone’s life.
They’ve all shared with me that their lives shifted the instant they began to believe that change was possible and they realized at a deep, visceral level that one could not possibly wish for a greater gift than the limitless power of choice to which they had been blind for so long.
They now strive to share this gift with as many as possible as they believe we have all been endowed with that remarkable gift but that sadly many of us remain unaware that it lies present within us.
John F. Kennedy told us that, “for those to whom much is given, much is required” and these great people believe that they are the recipients of “much” and wish to give back as much as they have received.
They speak of karma – that whatever we put out into the universe comes back to us – and they speak of being blessed by the good thoughts that came into their minds and became the impetus for the remarkable new joy they brought into their lives.
I agree. I believe that if we truly want to live lives of shameless self-indulgence – getting what we want – the best way to do so is to reach out and help as many others as possible get what they want.
In the end, we all want exactly the same thing. We want to be happy.
What constitutes happiness is, of course, different for each of us but, speaking for myself, I can truly say that the greatest moments of happiness in my life have come from those few instances when I have been able to help others.
Selfishly, I have not done enough of this but now that I have learned the secret of happiness I intend to do a lot more.
How about you?
Till we read again.
P.S. I usually use this space to shamelessly beg you to buy my book, Life Sinks or Soars – the Choice is Yours.
I mention each time that the book is available in both hard copy and as an e-book from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Chapters and Indigo.
I always mention a local, independent bookstore called Self Connection. I have encouraged people to support the store as they have been very helpful to me in the promotion of my book.
You can, of course, order my book from them by clicking here.
Today I asked two favours of each of you. The next time you are in the market for a book to read please consider visiting a local, independent bookstore. The small, independent bookstore is at risk of becoming extinct in the face of relentless competition from the Amazons of this world and unless we go out of our way to frequent these stores they will soon cease to exist.
The second favour is this: Self Connection has been nominated for a Small Business Award through the Calgary Chamber of Commerce. The award will be presented on Thursday, October 18th.
I would like to see the deserving owners of this store receive recognition for all the many things they do for their community and the winner of this award will be determined through online voting.
Below is a link to the site where you can cast a vote. The deadline for voting is fast approaching.
Please take a moment and cast a vote for Self Connection, I will be truly appreciative. Thank you.