If you want to beat the odds, it can help to find a compelling story to inspire you. I think it’s because almost without exception, all of us have experienced major challenges in our lives. We’ve questioned how we could possibly overcome the odds we faced. We’ve had family members, friends and colleagues tell us we would not succeed. We’ve wondered how to go on. During these times, we need to remember some stories of those who did just that.

I learned recently that 11 years ago one of my fellow Rotarians – I’ll call him Anthony – was diagnosed with Stage 3 lung cancer. Apparently, it was close to Stage 4. Two different doctors told him to go home and prepare to die. He consulted with another one who saw it differently. Anthony decided to fight. He radically changed his diet and other lifestyle factors and embarked on numerous traditional and alternative therapies. The survival rate for that stage lung cancer is very small, yet he’s alive today, an elderly gentleman with a wonderful twinkle in his eye. He beat the odds.

beat the odds superbowlIf you follow football, you know that the NY Giants beat the New England Patriots in this year’s Superbowl. It was an incredible game down to the final seconds. The Patriots were favored to win by two touchdowns. With little over 2 minutes left in the game, the Giants were behind by 4 points. They pulled it out and scored, beating a team which was 17 – 0 coming into the Superbowl. They beat the odds.

So right now, what are you facing where you need to beat the odds? How will you endure and overcome that particular obstacle and do more than survive, but thrive?

When you face your next daunting challenge, remember the NY Giants, remember Anthony, and most importantly, remember how you have beat the odds in the past. Take heart within yourself. Surround yourself with people who believe in you. Gather your courage and take one more step forward.

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