Kelly lost 16.5 inches in 30 days of yoga! She found mental clarity, improved food choices, and many other benefits in addition. Wonderful short video on the power of yoga.
Ninety Two year old Phyllis Sues has had an incredible life. But this is no accident, as you will see in this short story of her life, Phyllis is unstoppable.
Born April 4, 1923, she grew up as a dancer starting her career at the age of 14. She went on to perform on Broadway, being in as many as five hit long running shows. She also toured and performed all over the US and Europe.
In 1953 she married the actor/comedian Alan Sues and they did comedy sketches at nightclubs while she continued to dance on TV until 1968. Her marriage did not last long and she divorced in five years.
In 1970, when she was nearly 50, she started her own business that sold her own line of women’s high fashion sportswear. The business was quite successful and she ran it for 22 years.
But Phyllis just kept going, not pausing a bit after retiring from her business. She soon started learning Italian and French. And in 2003 at the age of 80 she began to learn to write music and play the piano and also learn Tango. Now she composes and produces music with an extraordinary group of musicians, and by the age of 87 she has produced six beautiful Tangos and debuted her music CD “Tango Insomnia”. She also has produced a Jazz CD where she plays the piano and also sings.
But she is not done. She also began learning Trapeze in her 80s and Phyllis walked into her first yoga class at the age of 85. Now yoga is part of her daily routine along with walking, tango, tennis, and jump rope. This is what she has to say about yoga:
“Yoga gives you a life you didn’t have yesterday. It’s a wakeup call to every cell in your body. Every muscle sits up and pays attention. I live to do yoga and I do it to live.”
Phyllis credits her long life to being active both physically and mentally. She is never shy of taking on the challenge of learning new things:
“What inspires me is the process of learning. Inspiration creates creativity and creativity creates a better life. I like experimenting and have no fear of trying something new, so flying high on a trapeze at 80 was never a question. Becoming a musician late in my life was not accidental. It was meant to be.”
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Rashema Melson has earned a full ride to Georgetown University on the sheer dint of her effort. Earning a perfect 4.0 GPA even while living in a homeless shelter, Rashima says, “Life is not fair, but despite this you must keep striving for success.” Because it was impossible to study where she lived, Rashema would go to school at 7 am and spend 14-18 hours there. Her effort shows us that it is possible to beat the odds if we put our mind to it.
In her valedictorian address she advises, “Beat the odds, let the sun shine!”. Great advice that we can all pay heed to.
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Bhavesh Bhatia was born with a condition known as “Retina Macular Degeneration”. As a result he had very poor sight and he knew that his sight would slowly fade and eventually he would become totally blind.
The vision finally left him at the age of 23. This was the worst possible moment for him as he was working as a hotel manager, scrambling to save money for his mother’s treatment, who was suffering from cancer.
His mother was the backbone of his life, and he was desperate to save her.
She provided the support he so badly needed to navigate life with his disability. Bhatia recalls, “I used to be bullied in school because of my poor sight. One day I came home and told her that I wouldn’t go back to school the next day. Everyone was ganging up on me and taunting me about my sight.”
“Instead of forcing me, or worse giving in to my demands, she gently stroked my hair and told me that the boys were not cruel.
“They want to be my friend, but are thrown off by how different I am. She told me that bullying was their way of getting my attention.
“I had a hard time believing her but did as she told me to. The following day, instead of treating them with the hostility they deserved, I approached my bullies with an offer of friendship. I became friends with most of them for life.”
He continues, “It is this early life lesson that has been my guiding principle in business as well. My poverty and disability have created insurmountable challenges for me. But her wisdom has lead me to make the right decisions.”
At the age of 25, in 1949, a law firm hired this man for a salary that is about $30,000 in today’s dollars. After a marriage that lasted 8 years he was divorced in 1953. He had been married since he was 21. He lost everything in the divorce, his wife keeping the family home, their only major asset. Shortly after the divorce he learnt that his son had leukemia. In those days there was no cure, nor was there any health insurance. You paid everything out of pocket. He poured everything he had into treating his son while spending as much time with him as possible. He would go to the hospital and hold his son’s hand and then stumble out into the streets crying. In 1955, a year after the diagnosis his son died at the age of 9.
Being divorced, broke, and having buried his 9 year old son, just when you think nothing could get worse, he had to undergo an horrific operation later in life, that left him in such pain that eventually he had to have one of his eye removed.
The name of this man is Charlie Munger. By the time he became 69 he was a Billionaire, counted amongst the richest 400 people in the world, and had been happily married to his second wife for 35 years. He is now father of eight children and many grandchildren and he has achieved his dream of having a huge family and a house full of books. Charlie Munger is now regarded as a well-respected businessman and thinker, his Poor Charlie’s Almanac is a classic and a must read for thinkers, leaders, investors, and entrepreneurs. How did he do it? His mantra has been to “be a constant learner”. By never stopping learning you are better today than you were yesterday, and over time this builds up and after a critical level is reached, results begin to show. For most of us this does not happen because we give up in despondency. The trick is to keep learning through success and failure.
There is no straight path to happiness, as Charlie’s life illustrates. We each have to persevere and have faith. We have to continue to learn and strive to make things better, without giving up in despondency.
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