We all have our own battles to fight and mountains to climb, this week I was fortunate enough to listen to and meet a man that had overcome his adversity and climbed his own mountains, literally and metaphorically. The man I am talking about is Brisbane man Lorin Nicholson. This week he was visiting some schools in our region to relay a message to students about reaching for the stars and making their dreams realities.
Blah, blah, blah you might be thinking – what makes this bloke so special and different from other motivational speakers? This bloke, let’s call him Lorin, was genuine, caring and believed in what he was saying to our students. When I asked my year 4 daughter what she thought about the talk, she said he was “Amazing”, she even took away the message he was spreading! Our whole school went along to hear him speak and play his guitar and he had teachers, parents and even our littlest Prep students absorbing his every word and action.
At the end of the work day Lorin then spoke to the staff on a different level, he didn’t preach and he didn’t talk at us, he simply told us stories from his own life and how he got to where he is today. A few years ago I was lucky enough to see the Dalai Lama speak at a conference I was attending; I was so moved by this experience and vowed to make changes in my life, both professionally and personally. Yesterday when I heard Lorin speak I was moved in the same way as his story was on my level, unlike the Dalai Lama, Lorin told us real stories of his real life and his real upbringing in a family of six children.
Whilst Lorin was speaking to us as a staff I would occasionally glance over and look at his dad who had accompanied him on this road trip; his dad was so proud of him, and although he had probably heard Lorin’s stories thousands of times, he still smiled with pride at every one of them. John’s biggest smile I think came when Lorin was telling the story of how he had set his mind on riding his bicycle to the beach, perhaps no big deal, but Lorin lived 278kms from the beach and in order to get there he had to ride through the Great Dividing Range. John smiled throughout this storytelling and his face filled with pride as Lorin drew to the end of his story where he finally reached Port Macquarie and he could here clapping just down the road, it was John cheering him on to complete his journey. John was very proud that his son had just ridden that torturous 278kms through the mountains, but more importantly, John was even prouder that his son hadn’t let his disability of blindness get in the way of his dream.
I learnt many things from Lorin and John, but I think the two most important things I can take with me and bring into my own life are: