Perseverance Pays Off!
I wrote a blog about Diana Nyad after her fourth attempt to be the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage. I thought we could all learn from her amazingly positive attitude. Despite having to give up, she was proud that she had done her best and encouraged others to keep chasing their dreams. I admired her resilience at the time. What I should have realized was that with an attitude like that she would try again. And try she did!
Wow! Talk about perseverance! On her fifth attempt on September 2, 2013, after almost 53 hours in the water, the 64-year-old Nyad finally did it! She successfully swam the 110-mile stretch between Cuba and Florida. Diana again offered words of wisdom, this time as she celebrated her success. One of the first things she said as she came out of the water was, “never give up”. She also said you are never too old to chase your dreams and she recognized the work of her team commenting that swimming is not a solitary sport.
Diana succeeded thanks to her supportive relationships, her commitment to a life purpose, and her resilience, all of which led her to persevere despite setbacks. Her first attempt to swim from Cuba to Florida was in 1978 and she tried and failed three more times in 2011 and 2012. But rather than giving up, Diana remained hopeful by focusing on how to resolve the challenges that were preventing her from succeeding. Jellyfish were a serious problem on her fourth attempt, so she and her team figured out how to solve the problem with a special silicone mask to protect her face.
Having a dream helps us to stay focused and compels us to find a way around obstacles. A supportive team and a positive attitude give us the resilience we need to never give up.
I applaud Diana’s success and I thank her for being an inspiration to all of us to never stop chasing our dreams!