Three decades ago the doctors told my parents that I wouldn’t have a normal life. I guess they were right. It was a long and somewhat bumpy road, but at some point in my life I finally realised something:
I did not achieve the things in my life despite of my disability. I achieved them because of it.
What blows me away every time is how people connect with my story and manage to apply it to their own life. Not just with disabilities, but taking responsibility for their lives no matter what their challenge is. Or what there excuse has been up until then.
My condition is a challenge every day: I can’t walk further than a block, and even for that I need a crutch and someone to lean on. I can’t get up most stairs and even something as ordinary as getting up from a chair takes a lot of effort and sometimes a helping hand. When I go outside, I am using an electric wheelchair.
In my years of living with a severe disability, I have learned one thing over and over:
Limitations are only in our heads!
I’m not going to pretend that limitations don’t exist at all, and neither should you. But I will say this: almost all of the things that we think are blocking our way are only imagined. You might not have a disability like I do. You probably have other things that you think hold you back from the life that you want.
Here’s the good news: How to overcome our limitations is something that can be learned. It’s not easy, but it can be made easier.
That’s why, after ten years in the film business, this is what I am now doing as much as I possibly can: to speak on stage, to write, and to coach individuals as well as groups how to overcome what they think is holding them back.