A few years ago, everything seemed impossible.
I was a bilingual, 2009 college graduate with a double major doing nothing with my life. I sat through six months of unemployment, living in my parents' basement, getting turned down, job after job after job (even Starbucks wouldn't call me back!). After a six-week, part-time seasonal stint at UPS, I was laid off after the Christmas rush.
Four years of college, doing the "right things," and this is what I had to show for it. Laid off from UPS. Huh. Sure, I had all these dreams and aspirations that I wanted to do, but they all seemed impossible. So I sat around for a couple of months and moped around, living in my parents' basement telling myself how sorry I should feel for myself.
Then one day, I just got sick of it. I got tired of telling myself all the things I couldn't do and listening to what other people said was possible and letting that define what my story would be. So I decided to write my own.
I made a list of all the things I felt were impossible. Then I decided to try to do them anyway. That was two and a half years ago. Since then I've crossed quite a few things off the list -- everything from getting a job to running a marathon and starting my own business.
Along the way, I've realized that once you start to do something you've never done before, you start to realize what actually is possible. You begin to wonder, if you're able to do things you didn't think you could do just one week, one month or one year ago, what else are you capable of? What else is possible, if you would simply try it?
When you start to see this, a realization beings to dawn on you: that in most of your situations, the only limits that really exist, come from yourself.
The International Disconnect
Of course, here in the States, along with most developed nations, we sort of take that opportunity for granted. We get the chance to pursue the impossible -- to push the limits of what we think we can do. Run triathlons and marathons, climb mountains, get ripped, start and run your own business and countless other things.
You get to explore this seemingly endless realm of possibility and soak in the reality that if you want to do something and you're willing to work and sacrifice what's required, you can do just about anything you want.
Unfortunately, not everyone gets that chance.
For a lot of people, something as simple as a basic education is literally impossible. Approximately 61 million children don't get a shot at a basic education. No reading. No writing. No arithmetic. Basic stuff that lets you do simple things like read this article, they may never (ever) get the chance to learn.
And so, the lack of those things that we take for granted, puts 61 million (61,000,000 -- that's six zeros) around the world in the hole before they even get a chance to get started. A basic education is impossible, and they're put at an even bigger disadvantage to start with than before.
But that's not the whole story...
How We Can Help Fix The Education Problem
Make a basic school education possible for thousands of kids around the world. Help them start out on an even playing field, so they get a shot at a decent education. One of these initiatives is Pencils of Promise. PoP is based on the fundamental understanding that sustainable and collaborative education initiatives can change not only thousands of kids lives but can also transform the community in which they live. Through education you don't just give people knowledge -- you give them possibility and the tools to make the impossible, possible for themselves.
I'm working with Pencils of Promise to raise $25,000 to help build an Impossible school in Guatemala and make an education possible for 1,000 students.
You can find out more in the video below:
I'm committing to do something I've never done before -- run an ultra-marathon (50 kilometers) -- in order to make it possible for 1,000 kids to do something they never thought they'd be able to do: go to school and get a simple education. Join me and let's raise $25,000 to help build an Impossible school in Guatemala and make education possible for 1,000 students.
The numbers are daunting, but it is possible. History is filled with people who didn't have much, but who banded together and made incredible changes.
Join me and help make education possible for 1,000 students.