Sunday, April 26, 2015

Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome... Going Beyond Life's Challenges


Good Morning,

Don't we all feel like were climbing a huge mountain sometimes.   I know I sure do when things don't seem to be going my way or unannounced challenges enter my life.  The big question for both you and me how should we respond during these times?

As some of you may have read on this site, I spent some time in the military with a good bunch of guys.  They were leathernecks, devil dogs, some may even call them jarheads, but they were resilient men who proudly held the title of United States Marines.  My experience with that organization formed much of my thinking about success and failure.  The Marine Corps had a motto that we lived by that was a commentary on how Marines are expected to deal with failure and challenges, "Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome".

One of my many stories that illustrate this concept was when we hiked into the mountains of Northern California.  In a matter of three days we covered more than 15 miles, and ascended from 2,000 to more than 8,000 feet with a ton of gear on our backs.  It was a grueling hike that took its toll on many.  A friend of friend of mine became one of the many who emulated our motto on that trip.
It started a few weeks prior to this exercise when he had purchased some new boots.  Much like each of us who were with the infantry he tried to find a pair of boots that were comfortable and would hold up to the rigors of the field.  During those weeks prior to the trip he ran in the boots, bathed them in mud while on field ops, and generally did everything he could to ensure these boots would protect and sustain his feet.

Sadly, this wasn't the case on our winter wonderland hike.  His boots became cold, and lacked pliability.  His boots began to start creating little hot spots all over his feet that turned into horrible blisters.  When we were half-way through the hike he came and got me to check his feet because he was in a ton of pain.  We quickly pulled his boots off, and all I saw were blood soaked socks.  The entire bottoms of his feet were covered with open blisters.  I quickly dressed his wounds, and was going to put him in the hummer when he stood up and starting walking away.  This trip was a rite of passage for him, a chance to prove to himself he could overcome obstacles and deal with painful challenges.  It was his opportunity to live the Corp's motto and be successful.

I'm surely not condoning abusing our bodies, but making the point that in life you and I sometimes face seemingly unbearable challenges.  Like my friend, we too can "Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome" when we believe in our cause and in ourselves.  Thank you for letting me share, and ramble a bit.

So, how are you going to "Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome" in your life today?  Whatever it may be, you can do it by believing in yourself, and figuring out how to beat that challenge.
Here are a couple quotes for your day:

“Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment. Full effort is full victory.”
Mahatma Gandhi
“if you set your goals ridiculously high and its a failure, you will fail above everyone else success”
James Cameron
Have a great Day!

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Thanks for visiting. I would love to hear your thoughts. Take care, Dave.