Aron Ralston spoke to those of us who attended the Shaklee Global Conference in Washington, D.C.. He is an amazingly candid young man, who described to us in detail the events of his 2003 hike that lead to his entrapment, his amputation of his own arm as well as his certainty that this incident was the best thing that has happened to him.

Aron RalstonHis New York Times Best Seller, "Between a Rock and a Hard Place", told his life-altering journey and his remarkable will to survive. Sharing with us from the Shaklee stage, Aron had many pictures of his hike, the companions he met along the way and the boulder that eventually took his arm and gave him his amazing spirit. He also showed clips from the Oscar Nominated movie he inspired, 127 Hours.

The images from Blue John Canyon were beautiful as well as frightening since we all knew what had happened to Aron. It is hard to see such beauty and know that he also went through such pain and agony. As he talked and we looked at the images, I realized how really focused he had to stay during his ordeal. He said that he now thought about things in comparison to the fact that he did not have to drink his urine now to stay hydrated! Now that puts a perspective on things.

Using his engineering skills, Aron helped create a specialized, radical prosthetic that has helped him with is adventures. He became the first person with a disability to ski from the summit of Denali, the tallest mountain in North America. Being a wilderness advocate, Aron has continued his adventures in climbing all 59 of Colorado's 14,000 foot mountains in winter! I would not think about doing even one! From all the summits, he then became the the first amputee to row a raft though the Grand Canyon in 2009.

So from now on when I am having a bad day I will remember that I have not had to "drink my urine" so the day is not really too bad! And I don't have to cut off my own arm to free myself from a canyon. Life throws things at you and how you decide to react says so much about how you value your life and your future. Take control like Aron did, even in a seemingly impossible situation, and do what needs to be done. Success may not be easy, but it will be worth the extra effort when then ends comes. Your wildest dreams are yours so the work.



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