I’ve often believed that we all have super human abilities; the majority of people just don’t know how to tap into them. I’m not talking about comic book type abilities like flying or stopping an atomic bomb blast. I’m talking about what makes a leader and hero out of an average Joe when a crisis occurs, or what gives that rare special teacher the power to turn a group of juvenile delinquents into a class of great students.
If you’ve not read about the great Explorer Ernest Shackleton, then you need to. His failed Antarctic expedition in the ship Endurance to reach the South Pole left him and his crew stranded for 22 months in the Antarctic in temperatures of -35 degrees Fahrenheit, and with very few provisions. Yet he successfully managed to save all members of his crew, no one died. After months on the ice, Shackleton and a few crew members undertook an 800 nautical mile journey in a small 7-meter boat navigating by sextant and chronometer to successfully land on the sound side of South Georgia Island.
Once reaching the island they had to cross an ice-clad mountain range to reach the whaling village on the other side of the island. From there they planed the rescue trip to retrieve the men left behind. It took four rescue attempts to reach the men. In the end, all were rescued.
Where did Shackleton find the energy, not only to keep himself going, but to successfully lead that group through the most trying and demanding circumstances? How was he able to keep his positive spirit and never give up? Under less of a leader the outcome would probably have ended in disaster, yet Earnest Shackleton managed keep the group together, he kept them from killing each other, and from going crazy in the isolation and from desperation.
He and his men performed superhuman feats: the 800 mile small boat journey and especially the trek over the icy and snow covered mountains at South Georgia Island. Modern, well rested, and well equipped climbers have tried to cross the same path that Shackleton took over the mountains and have not been able to do it in the same amount of time. Shackleton and the two men with him had no mountain climbing gear and were exhausted from months on the ice and the 800 mile boat ride.
What made it possible? What was Earnest Shackleton’s secret?
Just like there are good people and bad people, there’s good energy and there’s bad energy. If you believe in something and if you’re excited and passionate about it, you’ll spread that passion and excitement. You’ll create a domino effect in those around you, and your energy and passion will spread. When this happens, you’re tapping into and harnessing the underlying energy that makes up the universe. I believe this is what saved Shackleton and his men. They were all well trained and experienced, otherwise nothing could have saved them; however, something extraordinary happened on that journey.