• Dr Chan Abraham

Perseverance in the face of adversity


We all struggle with adverse circumstances, and leaders more so.

Indeed, if your vision and goal are to change the world for the better, to live a life of service, self-sacrifice and great endeavour, be certain that there will be those who will criticise, defame, unjustly accuse, seek to draw the worst inferences from your actions, deceive, lie, cheat, make derogatory statements, envy your success, attack, hate, and to harbour and act with malign and malevolent intent.

This is the real and mostly challenging experience of those who genuinely want to bring about positive transformation in the bit of the time-space continuum that they occupy!

Among various comments from those who have preceded us, I find the words of Theodore Roosevelt to be among the most apt, and they inspire us to persevere in the face of such adversity. It's from a longer speech and this is what he said.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds;

who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

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