I've always wondered, what is it about overcoming adversity that catches our eye? Why is Lance Armstrong going to go down in history as one of the greatest cyclists of all time? Why will Sania Mirza be remembered as one of the greatest icons for women in India? What makes A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, the president of India, such a great man?
One of them has battled cancer to come back to become the Tour de France champion a record seven times in a row. The next has beaten the crippling, self-serving Indian sports administration, societal barriers and supposedly "religious" beliefs to become India's greatest women's tennis player (though she does have a long way to go to become a champion, but it's possible.) As for President Kalam, from a small town kid, he went on to become one of India's great scientists and most effective Presidents.
I love watching movies where ordinary men and women stand up, stare adversity in the eye and get the better of it. What joy to watch the underdog beat all odds to overcome the favourite. It's amazing isn't it?
To me, it's a message that we actually have it in us to do what we think we can't. Maybe that's why I relish being challenged. I love some situation coming up to me, knocking the wits out of me, standing back up and saying 'Is that all you got?'
It's that tenacious, never-say-die attitude that inspires me. Coz if it don't kill you, it only makes you stronger.