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I Say You Can!

One afternoon, I found myself excitedly sharing a bit about the content I was writing for my next

post with my friend sitting next to me. He stopped me mid-way into my explanation and asked me if I had ever heard of Rob Mendez to which I replied “never heard of him.”

He took out his iPad and began to show me a YouTube video all about this guy. In my mind I was thinking… “what relevance does this have to do with my next post? Why is this Rob person so important for me to know?”

To humor him, I glanced at the video for 30 seconds when something happened. I was not only riveted to Rob’s story; I was completely and utterly touched by this man’s journey.

I completely ditched the theme for my next post. I had something else in mind.

You see, Rob Mendez realized his dream career and became the Head Junior Varsity football coach for Prospect Highschool in Saratoga, Ca.

Yet…Rob was born without any arms or legs.

As the video continued, I was completely blown away by all this man had gone through from birth to present day. As a baby, he looked at life as an adventure and did not see himself inadequate or inferior to others at all.

He couldn’t walk but boy he could roll!

He never complained about his situation.

As he grew into a teenager, he faced what anyone of us might see as insurmountable odds, being completely different from the rest however he found himself drawn to the one thing that he was incapable of doing physically, playing football.

That did not stop him.

He had a gift. Watching from the sidelines, he began to build play strategies in his head that he knew could potentially win football games.

He wanted to be a football coach! He was determined and above all committed to seeing his dream come true.

Rob went on a number of interviews and was passed over a few times however with an unbelievable will and determination and a strong support system surrounding him, he was ultimately offered the position of Head coach for the Junior Varsity Prospect Highschool football team.

His closing comments after meeting his team for the first time on the field was:

– Believe in yourself

– Believe in your team

– Believe in what you are doing

I have only scratched the surface of Rob’s story but what I realized in those few minutes of watching his life fly by on YouTube that the theme of my next post would be about goals and dreams and the determination and commitment needed to see them come true.

How many of us would have given up in defeat if our situation was the same as Rob’s? How many of us have actually given up on our own goals and dreams due to lack of belief in ourselves or lack of commitment?

As a career coach, I sometimes see my clients lose sight of their goals and dreams because they fear the unknown or the path becomes more of a trudge uphill, like dieting and exercise…it’s just so darn hard to maintain the will and determination to keep at it.

Sometimes there’s a sense of inadequacy that they’re are not good enough, or that they might be judged, or they just give up because they are telling themselves it “wasn’t” meant to be.

Believe me, I too have felt all of these things in pursuing my own dreams through the years. It can be hard.

But… dreams CAN become a reality and Rob showed me it is possible if:

We have a strong support system:

We need people who will be our sounding board, motivate us to keep at it when the going gets rough, be candid with us when we need it but above all believe in us and who can reinforce our own belief in ourselves. I have built an amazing team of people from friends, family and business partners who all believe in me and my dreams and keep me inspired

We have a fanatical will and fierce determination:

By picturing in our minds what it will look and feel like when we are living our dream to keep us moving forward. Reward ourselves when we make even little strides. I have to say that there are days I just don’t feel like working on my dreams however I have kept a picture of what my book cover will look like and a photograph of a successful workshop I recently conducted on my desk to remind me of why I do need to keep at it!

We practice resiliency every day:

To pick ourselves back up after a disappointment, dust off failure, learn from our mistakes and focus on our wins (even little ones). I have definitely been rejected a few times, (if you can believe that) and made some mistakes as I pursue my dreams however I sometimes have to just stop and say to myself “look at all I have done so far! I have come a long way”

Commitment to our passion:

Going after what was given to us as a ‘gift’ is having a mind-set of seeing the pursuit of our passion as a journey in life. Sometimes it is hard to stay committed and on the path as the distractions of life start to pull us away from our goals. I love what I do! I believe my career journey has led me to realize that I have the gift of teaching and helping others realize their own dreams and I don’t want to throw that gift away.

One of Rob’s favorite sayings is:

“Who Says I Can’t!”

Thank you, Rob Mendez, for who you are for inspiring others including me!

I ask you…do you have a goal and a dream you are pursuing?

– Do you believe in yourself?

– Do you believe in what you are doing?

– Are you committed?

Do you need someone in your corner to be part of your support system, to push, encourage and inspire you to see your career dreams come true?

You can reach out to me because — “I Say You Can!”


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