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Meeting the Challenges of Life During Uncertain Times

By Lee Machen, Gwinnett Leadership Founder


During the 2016 presidential primaries, I had the honor of briefly speaking with former neurosurgeon, Dr. Ben Carson, who was running as a presidential candidate for the Republican Party. Ultimately, Dr. Carson was appointed as the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development in 2017 by President Trump. Given my respect for Dr. Carson, I currently follow him on Facebook as I’m always interested in hearing his comments on current events.


Recently, he and his wife Candy celebrated their 45th year of marriage. As a commitment to this personal celebration, they decided to share, over the next 45 consecutive weeks, some of the quotes and poems that have made a difference in their relationship and in their lives. This, then, is the first of those quotes:

Success is determined not by whether or not you face obstacles, but by your reaction to them. If you look at these obstacles as a containing fence, they become your excuse for failure. If you look at them as a hurdle, each one strengthens you for the next.” - Dr. Ben Carson

What a wonderful perspective on life and success. If you know anything about Dr. Carson, you’ll likely appreciate the obstacles he and his family had to overcome, such as growing up in a single parent family. Yet, through his mother's strong belief in personal responsibility, she challenged Dr. Carson to always strive to do his best and to never accept anything as an excuse for not doing so.


So, as we face our own individual challenges from the uncertainties of our world today, let’s commit to look at each one as a hurdle that can only strengthen us and let’s stand as the example for others to follow.

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