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Beat Your Own Record And Dream Greater Dreams

The Olympics continue to bring its seasonal inspirations day after day. From stories of suffering refugees finally seeing their dreams come to life on the world stage to athletes breaking world records, and records they’ve achieved themselves before.

And seeing pro athletes break records they set themselves is an inspiration in and of itself.

What better achievement is there to achieve something and outdo it again, and again, and again? Read the rest of this entry

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Yusra Mardini: From Swimming for Life to Swimming for Glory

By ACNUR Comité español (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWTvAF4moK0) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Yusra Mardini

Yusra Mardini’s story begins as any tragic story from war-torn Syria begins. A young woman, fleeing death and destruction, in search for hope and dreams.

Her journey from Syria to Germany took her through the perils thousands upon thousands of refugees have faced while crossing the Mediterranean Sea to reach Europe. Yet her role in that crossing was not that of a mere passenger aboard a small boat.

As the New York Times reports, the dinghy she was on was about to sink, potentially taking the refugees aboard and their lives down with it.

Yusra Mardini and her sister jumped into the water and pushed the small boat and those aboard to safety.

While that heroic deed was most certainly the highlight of her journey, she also endured other troubles as she traveled through Lebanon, Greece, Turkey, the Balkans, and other central European countries before finally reaching Germany.

Yusra Mardini said she began to learn how to swim when she was 3, and her father continued to train her till she started to compete for her country’s national team. The Syrian Olympic Committee recognized her potential and her determination and began to support her ambitions as well.

Life in Syria took a turn for the worse when war broke out in 2011. Yet despite the horrible conditions, Yusra continued to train. “Sometimes we couldn’t train because of the war,” the Independent quoted her as saying. “And sometimes you would be swimming in pools where the roofs were [blown open] in three or four places.”

Yusra Mardini finally made it to the 2016 Olympics and was selected to join the Olympic Refugee Team with several other refugees from other struggling corners of the world.

 


(Yusra Mardini during the Women’s 100m Buttefly)

Her story will remain an inspiration to the world. A story of a dream that, through perseverance, struggle, and sacrifice, became a reality.

You can show your support by visiting Yusra Mardini’s official Facebook fan page here.

Just Doing Something is Very Important, But Don’t Forget This

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Once you realize your dream, your goal, or whatever it is that you yearn to achieve, it is very crucial to actually get your hands dirty with working on it. And even when you do, you won’t make it.

Yup, you won’t make it to your goal on a straight, smooth upward slope like you were riding an escalator. And you would never know where you are headed by just walking in some random direction.

The world is a map, and your life is a bucket list of places you want to visit. Only that these places, these destinations your heart desires to see, are your goals. And just as you might live your entire life without visiting breathtaking sights and being immersed in unbelievable experiences, you might live your life without achieving any goal your mind keeps begging you to work on if you don’t learn how to achieve them.

Unless you are walking on a prairie or vast grassland, getting to a destination never involves walking in a straight line. In cities, there are streets you must walk through, turns you have to make, and detours that may throw you further from your goal than you desire. In forests, you might have to walk around a lake, decide to avoid a muddy area, and trip on a few rocks or vines on the ground.

Your original set of directions to your destination, your initial plan to achieve your goal, may not get you there on the first try. And it just might not have been the best option.

Never let a failed plan ruin your dreams. Always be prepared for the unexpected. Keep a few other alternatives ready. And push on toward your goal.

Detoxing the People Around you

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Alexandrian Mediterranean Sea (by Zein Designz)

As humans, we are affected by everything around us either positively or negatively. A good cup of coffee can lead to a great start for the day, whereas a stale cup can add misery instead. A nice walk along the shore can uplift our spirits, whereas walking through a crowded street can feel chaotic.

The people around us also affect us in many ways. Meeting good friends puts a smile on our faces once we approach them. Speaking to a confidant helps relieve stress and the burden of holding in all our worries and troubles. Meeting an acquaintance who seems to be pleasant also helps make our lives more interesting and pleasant.

And, of course, the people in our lives can also have negative impacts on us, our moods, and our outlook. The drama setters can throw you into a tempest of rumors, backstabs, and gossip. The self-interest seekers will suck out your energy and good will for their own gains.

And sometimes even friends and family can cause drama and turmoil for you. You may find yourself absolutely loyal to an acquaintance who shows practically no true loyalty or friendliness in return. Family members may pull you from each of your limbs to help them out with their own problems and their issues they can handle themselves.

Detoxify your list; clear out those non-friends from your life and only befriend those who have shown true companionship in your struggles through life.

You’ll start noticing your life feeling ever purer and clearer.

How to Take Flight

We rarely take our talents, skills, and knowledge and push them to our utmost limit. It is human nature that we don’t fulfill our complete potential. Fatigue, distractions, problems, conflicts, and life’s own dramas all try to keep our feet on the ground.

But we all need to take some time, a few minutes or an hour each day or once every few days, to tell ourselves that we are much more capable of achieving greater feats than we are currently achieving now.

Whatever skill-set you currently hold, whatever knowledge you have been blessed with, and whatever tools and materials that are currently at your disposal, there is something you can do now that will take you one step closer to your full potential.

 

Go do it. And take flight.

Common Kestrel

Common Kestrel in Flight (Photo by Zein Designz)

Our Tempests and Drizzles

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Shipping in a Tempest of a Rocky Coast

Our lives have weather systems of their own. And while there are days when we take shelter from the tempests that come crashing through, there are also those drizzles that remind us, after we survived those tempests, to always be prepared for whatever comes our way.

As you walk through your path in life, as you travel along your journey to whatever your destination – whatever your goal, dream, or aspiration – is, you will have to endure those harsh storms to see the magical beauty of the other side of those tempests. And, sometimes, when it all seems like sunshine and clear skies, there will be some delicate drizzles that shower you with a reminder that the road is still littered with potholes and perils.

But you will make it through those tempests of pain and sorrow, and you will smile through those light drizzles of minor problems and conflicts, and you will smile when you reach your destination – when you turn around and look at that long journey and those winding and cruel paths you crossed.

Overcoming the Walls in Life

Walls

Brick Wall (by Oula Lehtinen)

We live our lives with goals and dreams somewhere in our conscience, only to find walls blocking the paths toward them.

These walls vary in height, and width. Sometimes a wall seems so high it blocks the sunlight that shines from our dreams and aspirations. Sometimes it is so wide that it will seem like forever to go around it.

The next wall can be a wall of steel, concrete, or bricks, and the idea of penetrating it or breaking it seems practically impossible.

And sometimes a high and wide wall may seem impenetrable, but beneath the façade, it’s just plaster and sheet-rock.

However high or wide those walls seem, whatever they are made of, you need to cross over to the other side to reach your destination.

Whether you have to go all the way around it, climb over it, or charge right through it, do whatever it takes to cross over the next wall and get to your destination.

The Furnaces of our Lives

In this world, we are the blacksmiths of our fate.

And the problems, challenges, and conflicts that cross our path during our journey through life are our furnaces and molding tools.

And our thoughts and decisions are our raw material.

And it is up to us to either use the material, the furnace, and the tools to create masterpieces, or just give up on it all and toss ourselves into the furnace and let it burn us into ashes. Never to be seen or heard from again.

And as we create one masterpiece after another, we must expect to face even harder tasks and hotter furnaces ahead.

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