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It starts with one

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- If you read the headlines, overhear a conversation, listen in a meeting, or talk to co-workers, you will hear a litany of issues affecting each and every one of us, every single day. Listen carefully, and you realize that the topics involve things like stress, abuse, not enough time, money, people, or resources, too much going on, and too much information. The bottom line is whether you want to admit it or not, we all endure struggles that are not unique and they occur at all times and periods in our lives and range from work, to family, to recreation. 

Is your life like mine? Is it sometimes overwhelming, exhausting, or stressful dealing with all the influences and events that go on around us? Over the years, I can think of numerous movements or focus events that have been created to address the struggles we deal with and encourage us all to draw strength from others.

In overcoming and dealing with my life's struggles, I have found that the moments when I needed support the most, there were people who helped me.   They noticed something was wrong or something with me was off. Then, they became the ones who took the time and asked, and truly meant it, what they could do to help, or simply asked a question about what was going on in my life.  Those people have included a coworker, a friend, a family member, and, brace yourself for the most surprising one, -- a complete stranger who was simply observant about someone else's life.

The reality is that no matter what anyone calls it, the observed road to recovery starts with one person. Each of us has been fortunate to have a responsible individual who has helped us deal with our struggles or simply provided a "pick me up." It all starts with one who makes things doable, endurable, and survivable.  However, if we multiplied that one with many then the power of multiplication occurs.

I challenge myself every morning when I look in the mirror with this -- "Are you willing to be the one today?" 

As I look around, I realize we can do anything, we just cannot do everything. The next time you look in a mirror, ask yourself if you will take the time to ask someone, and sincerely mean it, "How are you today?" or "Is there something I can do for you?" You might be surprised how much of a difference you make in just one person's life, and who knows, you might inadvertently help yourself at the same time.

Be the one!