When We Are Pushed to Our Limits

Have you ever wondered what you are capable of doing if you were really pushed to your limits?  Teenager Tony Cavallo may not be alive today if his mom had not tapped into her full potential.

The year was 1982, and Cavallo was working on his car in the driveway when the jack collapsed.  The teenager was pinned underneath.  Angela Cavallo, Tony’s 50+ year old mom, lifted the 3,500 pound Chevy Impala several inches and held it for almost five minutes while neighbors pulled her son to safety.

Many people have heard this story, and inevitably the question comes up about whether we could match the feat if facing the same situation.  What are we capable of when pushed to our limits?

In 2006, Lydia Angyiou was out with her two sons in northern Quebec.  Suddenly she saw a polar bear about to attack her seven-year-old.  As reported in this month’s Mental Floss magazine, she lunged at the 700 pound polar bear, kicking and punching it, and the two engaged in a wrestling match until someone finally shot the bear.  Lydia survived with just a few scratches and a black eye, which is unbelievable considering the circumstances.

Those two mothers acted out of instinct, out of their intense love for their children, and they tapped into a level of physical strength that is hard to comprehend.  Fortunately, most of us will never have to dead-lift cars or wrestle polar bears as part maximizing our potential.  But at times we will face challenges that seem almost as formidable.

Imagine how much easier it would be to face those challenges if you were not carrying around so much doubt.  Instead of selling yourself short and finding every excuse why you can’t do something, challenge yourself to move beyond what is comfortable, and by doing so you will step that much closer to your full potential.

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