Sunday, July 10, 2016

Breaking Barriers Philippine Blog Tour Featured Chapter: Chapter 8 Fighting Against All odds

I read Breaking Barriers: How to Knock Out Adversity and Live Life as a Champion by John Couret at a time when I was taking a full recovery from my Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA). It was a time when I was making sense of the healing process. I admit, I was very insecure then and to this day, I still have bouts of doubts. This is my personal struggle. It is real.

To some extent, doubts can be good. What I moderate and manage is the decline to complete and utter fear. As Yoda said in Star Wars: Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering. Life is too good to be lived in fear, anger and hate. My belief in the beauty and goodness of life was strengthened even more after reading John Couret's new book.

In Chapter 8, John Couret narrates his own struggle on dealing with serious health issues. He lost his sense of sight at a time when his career was picking up. He depended on friends and family to continue doing his daily routines. He gave up work for a while so he can heal. He was overwhelmed with these drastic changes that he was ready to throw in the towel. These same fears ate me up after my TIA. To read John Couret's journey and how he overcame his health issue was cathartic. In this particular chapter, I saw how John Couret humbled himself and reach out of the goodness of the universe. He recognized the workings of the Almighty in his life. Miraculously, he was healed. And he waited for eight months. What faith! What hope!

I imagine what those eight months must be like for John Couret. He must have slowed down. A lot! For a former boxer who led an active lifestyle, this must have been a big adjustment in all aspects of his being. But, he waited. In a time of struggle, waiting can be a great advantage.

Like John Couret, I am going to wait and to take small steps towards healing. Who knows, the physical healing I so desire will actually lead me to a healing of the whole self. What else could go wrong if the Almighty is in your corner? Keeping the faith and a positive attitude are the works of God. He is always on our side.

John Couret moves on in this chapter by telling the story of Bethany Hamilton, a professional surfer who lost her arm from a shark attack. She did not give up surfing. She went on to better herself despite missing one arm. Like him, Bethany Hamilton has inner strength. I finish reading this chapter with the belief that I will get better. I will take small steps and wait.

In chapter 9, John Couret provides tips on building stamina. While a strong spirituality is essential for healing, one's mental state is just as important.  He gives the following advice in becoming stronger in mind and spirit. I have compressed them, but read the chapter in full to get its full benefits.

a. Breathe for centering and balance. 
b. Meditate. To me, this means a passage from the scriptures: be still, and know that I am God. (Psalm 46:10) 
c. Pray. That's all there is to it. 
d. Exercise and decide what kind or method befits your current state of being. 
e. Take control of your health. Listen to your body! 
f. Tap into your creativity. Doing something creative is a big stress reliever. 
g. Sleep. Turn off the lights. Dock electronic gadgets far from the bed. 
h. Spend time on leisure activities.
As a whole, Breaking Barriers: How to Knock Out Adversity and Live Life as a Champion is not only inspirational and motivational. It is also, moving. John Couret coaches you through the entire 5 rounds. It is a self help book, yes, and the training exercises at each round allows for self reflection, being aware of one's thoughts and actions and building communities along the way for a better, more empowered society.

We all need this book now. Let the lawmakers, politicians and technocrats do their job. And let us do ours by becoming our own heroes because, life will always deal with us with issues we can't fully grasp. Then again, we can rise above these issues if we are whole, if we are strong enough because God is on our side!

July 3 - Introduction of the Breaking Barriers: How to Knock Out Adversity and Live Life as a Champion Blog Tour 
July 4 - About Write Hook Media 
July 5 - Cris Tanjutco Ngo of Teacher's Pet Featured Chapter: Chapter 7 Taking a Knee (Knowing When to Regroup) 
July 9 - Book Reviews, Featured Chapter & Author Interview link by Zarah Gagatiga, Xi Zuq's Nook,  Foster Carry and tsa-tsub!

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