An Unlikely Influence
We all have that special person in our lives, you know, the one who becomes that little voice inside of your head when the going gets tough, when the tough gets rough and when you feel like you’ve had enough. That ONE person who you admired as a young boy or girl, that you eventually started looking up to, and then one day realize that, that ONE person inadvertently now not only influenced your way of living, but also your way of thinking, of doing, of being.
As a young woman I have had so many people who influenced my life in some incredible ways – people who helped shape me, break me and make me into the strong woman that I am today, but there is one person who influenced my way of thinking, training and being in ways that no other person could – and I haven’t even met him yet. Maybe you’ve heard of him, maybe you haven’t… His name is Kyle Maynard.
See Kyle Maynard is not your typical hero – he is a bit different, unique – BUT its those differences that made him stronger than anyone I have ever met, braver than anyone I have ever seen and the type of influencer I want my son to look up to one day – not batman, not superman or ironman, no a simple man with no feet or hands who can fight like batman, fly like superman and who is stronger than ironman – a man like Kyle Maynard with a simple moto – “No Excuses, No Limits”
Kyle Maynard was born with a rare condition called congenital amputation, this simply means that his arms end at his elbows and his legs end at his knees. This however didn’t stop him from living his life, in fact I believe he has lived a fuller life than most of us have, simply because he does not believe in excuses and he never places limits on what he is able to do. Kyle Maynard played nose tackle in youth league football, he wrestled in High School ultimately winning 36 matches in his senior year of high school, he did weight training, he eventually moved on and opened his very own cross fit gym and even began training in Mixed Martial Arts. In 2012 he became the first quadruple amputee to climb Mount Kilimanjaro without assistance, by CRAWLING all 19340 feet in only 10 days – without the aid of any prosthetics! So, despite having no feet and no hands Kyle Maynard went on to become a champion wrestler, CrossFit Certified Instructor and Gym Owner, competitive MMA/Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu Fighter, world record-setting weightlifter, and skilled mountaineer – now YOU tell me how we can so easily give up, so easily say “I cant” without even trying, can so easily place limits on what we are able to do and provide a book full of excuses as to why not!
See Kyle changed the way I think and do things. He taught me that in order to get where you want to be you need to know your limits, but in order to know your limits you need to test them, and in order to test them you might have to try 100, maybe even a 1000 times, but eventually you will get there. Try giving up when these words are on re-play in your mind – you can’t – because I always keep wondering what if I succeed with the next one, how will I know if I don’t at least try one more time. He taught me that the saying of “nothing is impossible” is a lie… but that once we know our limits, we can always try to break them. Through studying and listening to his videos I have been able to change my mindset, and even when things are hard I hear his voice in my head and gain strength from his achievements to keep on keeping on and push harder than ever before, and this have had such an impact on my sports career, personal life and even as a mother. I have learned not to place limits on myself, but also to not place limits on my children. I refuse to teach them excuses, instead I’ll show them how to find solutions, how to trust in their own abilities and how to exceed their own expectations. Through his videos I have also learned that RIGHT NOW is the only thing that matters, so invest all you have into the present, because you can’t change or influence the past or the future, but this moment – right now – matters most.
So How did this Influence Me?
Firstly I have learned to never take anything for granted, there is always someone else who dream about and pray for the things I already have. Secondly, I have learned to never make excuses if I haven’t yet tried, because the “what if’s” are worse than the “oh well’s”, and this counts for Aryan as well. Thirdly – as mentioned above – even if I fail, I push myself to try again and again because instead of seeing it as “failure”, I now see it as another opportunity to test and push past my own limits and boundaries. Fourthly – he has taught me that nothing in life worth achieving comes easily – it all takes hard work, commitment, dedication and sweat and tears – it may be possible, but nobody said it would be easy. And last but not least for now, I have learned that when things become a little too much and overwhelming – to take a step back, breath and focus on one thing that is important in that very moment (not the past and not the future) and to take it 3 steps at a time. Do yourself a favour and take 10 minutes to watch one of his videos.
“It’s important to realize anything truly worth having in this life is going to be hard and sometimes we may have to fail hundreds of times before we break through and succeed. I had to go through failures in order to learn how to do it.” – Kyle Maynard