Every day you have a choice.

Make it count.TM

lauren manning
All of us experience moments of adversity, when we feel we are at our weakest. Yet later, as I did looking back, I saw that even then I had the power to choose, and to act.

We tell ourselves, “If we only knew then what we know now.” But if that exercise teaches anything, it’s that if we had understood our true power then, we may not have felt such doubt.
The lesson is not how strong you were back then. It’s how strong you are, right here, right now.

This is our Unmeasured Strength. This is the power we all have inside of us, to persevere, and to prevail.

My experience of injury and recovery confirmed that in any crisis, attitude is everything. Attitude shapes the tone of an organization. It can have an enormous influence on the decisions and actions of others — our associates, our teams, and certainly, our enemies.

I wanted a 100% recovery. That was supposed to be impossible, but that was the goal I set. People knew exactly what I stood for. And they joined with me in achieving that goal. Because I showed my commitment, I was able to recruit others to my cause.

The difference between poor leaders and great leaders is their commitment to adapt. This is how great transformations are made.
An international symbol of hope and courage.

You are a true American hero … Your essence defines what it means to be survivor.

Although she was badly burned, through fierce willpower and character, she fought her way back and reclaimed her life… Lauren writes that we may all, in fact, we all will be touched by adversity as we go on our life’s journey, but we can refuse to be trapped by it. And that is what emerged so powerfully on September 11th and all the days that followed – compassion, courage, and character as strong as one can imagine and even stronger than the steel that [was] in the towers.

I have watched the American people bounce back from painful recession, mass shootings, and natural disasters … because of the resilience of the American people, these events could not come close to breaking us. I think of Lauren Manning, the 9/11 survivor who had severe burns over 80 percent of her body, who said, ‘That’s my reality. I put a Band-Aid on it, literally, and I move on.

Sometimes you get woken up, and get reminded of the courage people possess. And when it comes down to it how much all the bullshit and distractions that we all create between each other gets in the way of our collective power. It’s very hard to find great leaders today, people in power setting an example we all want to live up to. So, once again, we resort to the people: normal, everyday, hard working people.

I have found my new hero. Her name is Lauren Manning…Her determination is awe inspiring. She is the most remarkable woman I think I’ve ever met.

Your message of hard work and faith would resonate in the day to day difficulties that we all face … Lauren, your grace and courage are an inspiration.

A Woman Of The Year knows that you don’t have to be a president or a princess to make a difference in this world. Take it from September 11 survivor, Lauren Manning, a winner in 2002, whom I found myself thinking of often this fall as marked that solemn anniversary…Back then, with burns over 80% of her body, she taught us that the daily decision to keep going can in and of itself be heroic. As she said, ‘every day, you have a choice. Make it count.

Invincible.

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