Last night, I was watching Chopped, a cooking competition on the Food Network. Four chefs begin with a mystery basket of ingredients. They must use all of the ingredients in some way. After each round, the chef with the worst dish will be chopped. One of the chefs was a 26 year old from New York City. He had been cooking since he was 15 and suffered from Fibromyalgia. He also battled depression and low self esteem. He walked into the competition already defeated, telling himself that he could not do it. At the same time, he desperately wanted to win and prove to himself that he was worthy.
During the first round, he struggled. He was nervous, couldn't think straight, and simply forgot how to do things he does everyday. He told himself that he would eliminated, so "why am I even trying?" His appetizer looked awful and it seemed that he was going home. The judges told him that he was better than that, and he needed to find a way to put his doubts in check. At the end of round one, another chef was eliminated because she forgot to use one of the ingredients in the mystery box.
Round two began, and he put his game face on! With his main dish, he blew the other chefs out of the water! No one could believe the turnaround. He proved that he could win the competition. After the final round, he did win the competition and $10,000. You could tell that he hadn't smiled like that in a long time! As I watched him, I was so proud of what he accomplished. He fought through adversity, his pain, and his doubts to achieve his goal. All he needed was someone to say, "You are better than this."
Sometimes, the odds are against us. It looks like we are out of the game. But, if you can pull enough strength to tell yourself, "I am better than this...I can do this", change starts to occur immediately. Change refuses to let us give up. Change shows us that we are capable of doing the impossible.
Never give up!