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determination

Rejections ache. Book rejections have their own trauma, and yet they're a chance for growth. In the 40 years it took me to get my non-fiction book, The Age of Daredevils, published, I learned about my weaknesses and how to take a punch.
My experience made me wonder if this bike ride was somehow a metaphor for something bigger. Is this like going through a divorce and riding on despite the pain? Does it represent my ability to move forward in the face of life's challenges?
I am a bona fide baby boomer. The phrase "I remember when" floats in my head fairly often these days, a sea of memory. Like time itself, those recollections expand and contract. Expand to include all of my life, contract to make it feel like only yesterday I was young.
Listening to a friend talk about their divorce, I pause and think -- this all sounds familiar. My friend details the lead up to her separation and there are so many similarities it's a bit unnerving. Same actions, same words, same behaviour. How is that possible? Turns out similarities are not even unusual but predictable, right down to the language a departing spouse might use.
It's that time of year again. Cottage opening. Prompted by that movie 32 years ago, we scraped together some cash and bought the waterfront property of our dreams. Travelling down the dusty back roads of our town we found the perfect piece of land. A huge stand of birch trees and a view straight across the lake.
Throughout my childhood my family sat down to dinner together every night. One particular dinner stands out in my memory as the day my life changed. "You have an eye disease called Retinitis Pigmentosa," my mom said. "Bet you can't say that three times fast!" my dad added, trying to lighten the mood. "Your vision will continue to get worse."
Is there a blueprint for "cultivating grit," and are there steps you can take right now to build it within your life? These are questions that come up a lot whenever I give a talk on overcoming adversity, so I thought I would share a few of my strategies with you.
We said goodbye to 2013 a couple of days ago. For me, it was a bittersweet good-bye; sad because I have always been emotional with them, and happy because 2013 was a year of endings and new beginnings. And that type of year is filled with sadness, hardship, effort and joy.