What’s your “in spite of” story?

What's your "in spite of" story?

Have you ever noticed how inspiring stories of triumphal defiance are? We love to cheer for the underdog who perseveres against all the odds and comes out on top. Yes, we love a good Rocky story.

Especially when they are real life.

In spite of a military demotion, several failed business ventures, and multiple political defeats, Abraham Lincoln became President, deftly leading America through the Civil War, abolishing slavery.

In spite of going broke five separate times, Henry Ford commercialized the Model-T automobile and ushered in mass production technology.

In spite of being rejected by 28 different publishers, Theodor Geisel’s books have sold over 600 million copies, have been translated into more than 20 languages, and earned Dr. Seus two Academy Awards, two Emmy Awards, a Peabody Award, and the Pulizer Prize.

In spite of being unable to speak until he was four years old and told by his teacher that he would never amount to much, Albert Einstein went on to usher in modern physics with his theories of relativity and being generally regarded as one of the smartest men who ever lived.

These are but a few famous examples of those who persevered to bring to life their creative best. More are captured on this video. As I watched it, three things about their story impressed me:

  1. They didn’t believe their detractors or let their failures become their disabilities.
  2. They achieved notable contributions having experienced even more failure than I presently have.
  3. Their story inspires because the ending is known. My story is not yet finished.

Your story isn’t finished either. Perhaps you could write yours the way I’ve summarized theirs: In spite of       (your obstacles)     ,      (your name)    went on to      (your dream)     .

Remember, the middle of the story is where you find conflict and tension. Redemption and inspiration come in the next act. How are you writing yours?

What’s your favorite story of personal triumph?

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