Why You SHOULD Take the Plunge

Afam Onyema discusses how taking that first step towards action is the beginning of victory.

One of my favorite figures from history is President Theodore Roosevelt. He lived an amazing life. He accomplished so many big things – he built the Panama Canal, won a Nobel Peace Prize, started America’s national parks system.

But he received a great deal of criticism during his lifetime, exactly because he dared to do big things. After his presidency, he gave a speech in response to all of those who had been hollering and sniping at him through the years. In it, he said that “it is not the critic who counts. The credit belongs to the one who is actually in the arena.”

I find myself thinking a lot about what President Roosevelt said. I think a great deal about battling in arenas. We live in a world that is in many ways broken and scarred – a broken, weary world that loves to kill our dreams, to strangle them to death before we have a chance to fully nurture and embrace them. We live in world vehemently hostile to hope.

Theodore knew this well. He pointed to the critic outside of the arena, and we must confront him as well. Choose to live your life at full volume, with strength and joy and passion, and you will surely confront those who will try to tear you apart. The fight in this arena will be harsh and difficult. Living an inspired and inspirational life is often difficult and unglamorous, completely devoid of glitz and pomp. The road is painfully perilous and uneven, and it will take a long, long time before our dreams will be achieved.

So why fight? Why step into the arena at all?

Because, as President Roosevelt said in that same speech, our place is not with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat. We leap into the arena despite the critics and the doubts and the difficulties. We act in defiance of them. And that act alone is the beginning of victory….Continue reading on InspireMeToday.com.

Afam is co-founder and COO of The GEANCO Foundation and a graduate of Harvard University and Stanford Law School.

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Fi T.
Past Member 4 years ago

Keep moving

heather g.
heather g4 years ago

Wow - That was a good article, thanks.

Where I live I sometimes interact with many people who seem to be beaten down - but they can be nasty themselves as they talk behind peoples backs and mostly - they don't tell the truth.

Virginia Belder
Virginia Belder4 years ago


Patricia H.
Patricia H.4 years ago

good share

Lauren Weinstock
Lauren Weinstock4 years ago

I agree with Pat P. about not living life fully and remorse.
I found this post very empowering, inspiring, and will re-read it. I"ve been thinking a lot about courage- and the times our courage fails, because we... for me, I run out of energy. Peace to all.

Terry V.
Terry V4 years ago


paola ballanti
Paola Ballanti4 years ago

good article

Karen Gee4 years ago

Thanks for the info

paul m.
paul m4 years ago

Yes Pat P. ....Thanks..

Jonathan Harper
Jonathan Harper4 years ago

Go for it!