“Life is like a book with many different chapters. Some tell of tragedy, others of triumph. Some chapters are dull and ordinary, others intense and exciting. The key to being a success in life is to never stop on a difficult page, to never quit on a tough chapter. Champions have the courage to keep turning the pages because they know a better chapter lies ahead.”
Rich Ruffalo, Award-winning Athlete
“Effort only fully releases its reward after a person refuses to quit.”
Right now, you may have hit a difficult page or a tough chapter in either your life or your writing. I’m right there with you. I’ve hit a thorny patch in the latest revision of my children’s novel and I’ve just started my rewrite — it’s tough going. I have to change something major and it’s rippling through my entire story. I’m in a tough spot, but I’m going to take Rich Ruffalo’s advice and “keep turning the pages.”
Rich knows what he’s talking about. He knows how rough it can be to keep going when the going gets tough. Legally blind since he was a young man, he went through many bouts of despair, but he never gave up on his dream to become an elite athlete. Ultimately, triumphed over circumstances and won a sheaf of international and national medals as an outstanding athletic competitor and motivator. His book, “P.E.P.: The Seven Ps to Positively Enhance Performance” chronicles his gritty, inspiring story.
In looking at his story, several qualities about him jump out, qualities we can all use to jump start our own projects if they’re stalled:
He had a mission: Along with his physical challenge, Rich also had a tremendous drive to excel on the playing field. Over time, he transformed that drive into a burning desire to prove that even a major physical impediment was no obstacle to outstanding performance. That desire became his mission and motivator.
He had support: Throughout his many ups and downs, Rich was surrounded by family and friends who believed in him. Along with his own belief in his abilities, this support gave him the courage and the will to break out of despondency, set failure aside, and go for the gold. His team became another powerful motivator.
He made it about others: Over and over in his book, Rich stresses the importance of putting others first. When we get outside our own heads, we move beyond self-imposed boundaries. His inspiration was bigger than his limitations.
OK, we can do this! We can reignite our sense of mission, reach out for support, push past self-imposed limits, and overcome the obstacles we face. Write on!