The power of perception
I recently wrote about the power of perception, pompously thinking I knew what it was.
The truth is you don’t really know anything until you’ve lived it, until you’ve felt the reality of it, until you’ve broken through the s#*t storm or connected deeply with someone who has.
You think you know sorrow until your hero, a person you love unconditionally, passes away.
You think you know how to defend yourself until a Jiu-Jitsu blue-belt folds you into a human pretzel.
You think you know contentment until you meet someone who hasn’t been able to see for well over 40 years but still cuts wood with motorised saws, runs marathons, scales desserts, escapes from remote prisons, supports his family and jokes like there’s no problem (keep reading and you’ll understand).
Aubrey Marcus put this concept brilliantly, in his recent podcast with Nahko, as “the cool breeze of perspective.”
Life sometimes offers us this cool breeze and it’s our job to acknowledge it and use it to grow!
You’re lucky if you can acknowledge the cool breeze through other people rather than being smacked in the face by it!
This week I was lucky, I felt the cool breeze through an inspirational man…
Blind Dave Heeley
A man who lost his sight in his late teens/early twenties years due to a genetic disorder called retinitis pigmentosa (RP).
You think times are tough?
How would you feel as a teenager being told that you’re losing your eyesight and you will never see again?
Dave admitted that he took the news hard to start with, kicking doors and punching walls; however, he has overcome such pain to create a wonderful life for himself…
He is happily married with three children, enjoys carpentry and does some fantastic challenges to raise money for charity, including (to name just a few):
- Being the first blind man to run seven marathons in seven continents in seven days
- Spending six days in the Sahara desert
- Escaping from Alcatraz
- Running ten marathons from John o’ Groats to Lands’ End in ten days
Completing these challenges are amazing feats alone, without the added challenge of being blind, but Dave’s impressive endurance and ability to defy his disability is not what inspired me most…
My cool breeze of perspective
Blind Dave Heeley is one of the most admiral people I have ever met!
This was the first time I had ever met Dave, yet we laughed, we joked, and we almost cried together!
(A couple of times during the podcast Dave spoke about his family and the work he does for disadvantaged children. Let’s just say it was a little emotional).
Even though he couldn’t see us, he looked in the direction we were speaking from out of respect.
He welcomed us into his home and was a true gentleman, fully immersed in the conversation and loving every minute of it.
This is a man who clearly enjoys life yet he is more disadvantaged than pretty much anyone I know!
If that isn’t inspiration to become a better person and live in a way that I truly love, then I don’t know what is.
It would be all so easy for Dave to bury his head in the sand and feel sorry for himself, but instead, he gets up and gets on with it. He’s “enjoying the journey” as they say in the self-help books.
Why do we worry so much?
It’s up to us to enjoy what we can do while we’re here.
Our past doesn’t need to establish who we are today.
There is no excuse for us to bury our heads in the sand, drift through life aimlessly and feel sorry for ourselves.