Friday, January 1, 2010

It starts with the decision: "It can be done."

It starts with the decision: "It can be done."

It's New Year's Day. As is our custom, we woke up, turned on the TV and began watching the Rose Parade and then I saw them. The Ohio State School for the Blind Marching Band. WOW! A blind marching band. Who thought of that? The answer is "somebody did."

To me, it was both impressive and beautiful. Their story is better. The band existed, but did not start marching until the Ohio School for the Deaf revived its football program and requested a marching band. Fantastic on all accounts. (
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The fact is that doing the impossible always starts with someone having the idea that it can be done.

This is true for any and every advancement that we as a species have ever made. Advancements in science, politics, sports, human rights, technology, the arts and so on have all resulted because someone decided it can be done.

When Roger Bannister broke the four minute mile barrier in 1954, our world was forever changed. He did it because he believed it could be done and the impossible was suddenly possible. Since that time, scores of people have run a four minute mile. Is a three minute mile possible? It won’t until someone decides it can be done. For me, I have learned to never say never.

I am relatively certain that I will never run a four minute mile (or five or six minute mile either!). But because there are people who can and do believe that things are possible, the impossible, the unthinkable, the unimaginable has become possible. Today we know that you can never prove a negative. That is, you can never prove that something will never happen. What we can do is continue to make advances, even if only at a fraction of a second at a time.

The treatments we have today for cancer, diabetes, heart disease, AIDS and MS were all non-existent just 30 years ago. Will we cure all of these diseases? We won’t unless we think it can be done.

It is a now 2010. It is a time for me to ask myself “What can I do?” I have a few ideas and if I do them, I promise to let you know about them. My hope for the new year is that you will ask yourself the same question.

Participate. Make a difference. Live a life that matters.


  1. Hi,
    Please visit my blog and pick up your award.
    Best wishes for this New Year.

  2. Such an incredible post, Michael! And your words helped to push me forward with a goal I once was intimidated by. Hope you get a chance to read about it in our blog, and thanks for the continued inspiration and words of encouragement!

  3. Absolutely, totally, agree Michael .. this latest inspiring blog by you is an example of what i scour the internet for (re MS) and what i seek to draw people to. Best wishes from down under, KB