He was driven, talented, and respected in his organization. He was traveling a path that would yield a long and fruitful career in a large, well-respected international corporation…
Then it happened. A huge boulder suddenly blocked his path. Its name is cancer, and it is of the serious, and potentially life-ending, variety.
He could have allowed this horrible situation to cause him to quit, give up, and ultimately derail his leadership. However, that is not in his DNA. This courageous leader instead chose to fight with everything he had to defeat this monster. He refused to allow this circumstance to make him a victim.
His fight includes more doctor visits, treatments, sickness, isolation, and procedures than we can imagine. It meant taking a step back from his career to focus on this fight for his life.
Now, over two years later, I sat with him and heard a bit about his journey. He is back at work with no fear, even though one cold or infection could be terminal for him. He travels, leads, and has earned the respect of his superiors, peers, and many others within the organization.
I asked him to share with me how he continues to lead with this incredible burden placed on his shoulders. He responded, “Every day is a bonus.” He continued, “I am determined to live my life each and every day because I know that it could be my last.” Thus, he continues to lead and influence others both personally and professionally.
This executive refuses to allow his environment or his circumstances to drive his behavior.
He has taken control of his life and continues to speak into the lives of others. Instead of allowing his cancer to make him a victim, he has chosen to follow the path of leading himself and others well.
Thank you Jake, for your example and inspiration, but most of all for choosing to “live your life.”
When you choose to “live each day as a bonus,” you will make a difference!