Stand up to LIFE!

“When life knocks you down, try and land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up.”

It’s unfortunate, but the people closest to us usually hurt us the most. I know it comes from a good place, but it still hurts when it comes from someone special. I know when I started dreaming of being an inspirational speaker, my family freaked out. There were some dark days, especially when things at my job weren’t going well. My dad kept saying that if I don’t let go of this dream of mine, my work will let me go… and I’ll be on the street inspiring no one. That was hard, because I could tell that they didn’t believe in me.

Then I came across a letter that a friend had written about me (they weren’t planning to give it to me). The letter said that I was an embarrassment. I was pathetic, wanting to write books and change people’s lives with the power of speaking. I couldn’t even look after my own life, but I was giving advice to others. They said I would fail. They knew it. They could see that I had nothing worth aspiring to.

Then with my Facebook page, I had colleagues at work literally laugh in my face. These guys that I saw as friends laughed and pointed fingers at me. The one even said when people ask if he knows me he says, “No, he’s the creepy guy in our office.”

I didn’t understand it then. I thought, why is this happening to me? Why am I going through this pain? I’m not trying to hurt anyone. I’m not trying to rob or steal from anyone. I’m not trying to bring anyone down. Why does this have to happen to me? I didn’t see it.

I kept listening to inspirations like Les Brown… His encouragement kept ringing in my ears, when life knocks you down, try and land on your back because if you can look up, you can get up. And I kept getting back up. Even after I wrote my first book, nothing changed. My family still thought I was crazy. People at work acted like writing a book is nothing. I lost relationships. Friends, girlfriends… people who I thought had my back, but they only had their own interests and insecurities. I was low. I was doubting myself.

I am reminded of a story of this boy who kept getting bullied at school. The bullies just didn’t leave him alone and constantly threw him to the floor. One day he decided to stand back up from the floor. The bullies quickly threw him down again. He got back up. Time and time again. Eventually the largest bully got upset and threw him to the ground and then sat on him. “Try get up now punk,” he said. The boy on the floor replied, “You may stop me from standing up, but in my mind I am still standing up.”

Sometimes, we have to be like that boy. We have to get back up, time and time and time again. No matter how heavy life sits on us. We have to get back up. You have to keep fighting. When we start doubting ourselves we have to stand up in our own mind. We have to stand up against our insecurities. We have to doubt our doubts.

I like what Frank Sinatra said when he said the best revenge is massive success. Today, my family introduce me as Laurens the author, they are the most proud of me. I also get to share my stories and life with others and make a change in their lives. I can relate to people’s difficulties because I have been there. All because I stood back up. You need to do that. Start anything worthwhile and life will come after you. I promise, but life cannot hold you down. All life is doing is testing how badly you want something. Don’t give up. Don’t give in. And when life knocks you down, try and land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up.

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