Monday, June 15, 2009

Lance Armstrong's It's Not About the Bike

Just the other day, a close friend of mine poured out his worries to me. Much have happened at his work place lately, both good and bad, and he's overwhelmed by doubt and fear.

Coincidentally, he asked me to recommend him some books to read. Prior to the conversation, I suggested the Bartimaeus trilogy (but, of course!). But after our little chat, I recommended him Lance Armstrong's It's Not About the Bike. Here's why.

When diagnosed with testicular cancer, the once confident, ruthless Armstrong, felt weak and lost, mentally and physically. But gradually, he picked himself up and decided to not give in without a fight. And it is this journey that we see how Lance turns fear into strength, uses it to fight his doubts, worry and disappointments with courage, perseverance, endurance and determination. And most importantly, to bring back once again, the belief in himself to be able to overcome a challenge. This part, best describes it:

"I believed in belief, for its own shining sake. To believe in the face of utter hopelessness, every article of evidence to the contrary, to ignore apparent catastrophe - what other choice was there? We are so much stronger than we imagine, and belief is one of the most valiant and long-lived human characteristics. To believe, when all along we humans know that nothing can cure the briefness of this life, that there is no remedy for our basic mortality, that is a form of bravery. To continue believing in yourself...believing in whatever I chose to believe in, that was the most important thing."


We're given only one life. So, whatever comes our way, embrace it. Whatever the challenge, face it. Whatever the outcome, accept it. But not without first giving your best.

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