The Power Within

By: Gehan Shalabi

4300 Votes

The Power Within - Gehan Shalabi

University Of La Verne


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Gehan Shalabi

“Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.” (Gandhi)

The night of my first asthma attack will stay with me for the rest of my life. The intolerable amount of pain, the panic, and the feeling of being totally helpless changed my perspective on the value of life. My recognition is that it isn’t the events that one faces over time, but rather the reaction one has towards them. Such aptitude was not easily obtained, however; my own robust experiences in life have trained me to obtain an extensive level of vitality.

Growing up, I was always expected to hold responsibility for many different roles in my family. My grandmother was sick and forced me to learn how to react quickly, never complain, and know everything there is to know about diabetes and broken bones. In reality, those broken bones not only stressed me out at one point, but they made me realize I needed to have a patient and attentive mindset. Once realizing this, I began helping her feel better with my positive attitude. As she progressed through her recovery, I also became more content with myself. The strive she and I went through to help her get better didn’t just heal her bones and her blood sugar; it strengthened my mentality and prepared me for whatever may come.

On the pitch, playing a lead role was the most difficult part. As the captain of multiple soccer clubs, my team’s expectations as well as my own developed over time. Soccer taught me the best way to motivate myself with my personal obstacles: the determination that came from leading the team drove me to hold the same mentality throughout school and my job. The regard I gave my team and my coaches ensured me to respect everyone around me. Finally, the optimism and hope I had to place first in each season created a beneficial aspect about my personality. Being pro-active with every opportunity given to me in each play showed me how to take advantage of everything I am capable of doing.

Asthma. Tendonitis. Anemia. These are only a few of the many health issues I am currently overcoming. From my hardships, I have adapted to the sicknesses I face every day. In order to prevail over it all, I challenge myself by making sure to keep in shape despite the pain, I aspire to never think about the worst possible outcome, and use all of the negativity in my life as something to strengthen me rather than weaken me. By not having the perfect health history, I produced the best mental attitude for myself because I believe that with an extraordinary mind, I can accomplish anything.

A strong mindset can do wonders for anyone. For me, a strong mindset is the way of life. It is the push I need to overpower every hindrance with a positive outlook as well. Attaining a stable and powerful mind is what gets me through soccer, my family, my health, and any other challenges I may face. Whether there is a goal to score in, an asthma attack to fight through, or a responsibility to take, I will always use my unyielding mind to get through it all.