Smiling man
Photo: Pixland/Thinkstock
We all hear about amazing people who have overcome great obstacles in their lives. No one ever said life was going to be easy, yet how challenging it is can often be determined by your own attitude. We just saw a wonderfully uplifting and moving video about Nick Vijick. This extraordinary man, now 25 years old, can dive, play golf, fish and skipper a small boat and has sparkly eyes and a huge smile, yet he was born with no arms and no legs, just a small flap he uses as a foot. He also gives powerfully inspiring talks to teary-eyed children and adults that completely transform them. Nick has spoken to audiences in more than 15 countries and to more than 2 million people.

Watching Nick, who has overcome adversity that most of us will never come near to experiencing, leaves us in awe and invites us to confront thoughts that we are inadequate, useless or even incapable and moments in which we felt awkward, overweight, too short or too tall. We make our own, often small, issues appear so big that they easily dominate our behavior. You cannot always choose what happens in life, but you can choose to respond with either fear or love, with anger or with acceptance. You can't control the wind, but you can adjust your sails.

Someone like Nick can inspire you to accept yourself just as you are, warts and all, and to see that despite the flaws, you are actually beautiful. His optimistic and heartfelt attitude can free you from feeling repulsed by him, as he is okay with who he is, just as he is. It's eye-opening that we need to hear this from someone who has so obviously struggled before we can believe it for ourselves, but when you truly get that life is a blessing, no matter how hard it might be, then you are honoring that struggle.

At times, you can easily resent what life has given you. You may focus on what you don't have or what you can't do, which brings you down and deflates your energy. Instead, it is necessary to focus on what you do have and what you can do and to feel gratitude for this. If you believe it's impossible, it's impossible; if you believe it's possible, it's definitely possible! As Nick says: "It's a lie to think we are not good enough or not worthy of anything. Attitude is altitude!"

How to accept yourself