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Creating MOTIVATED is a labour of love for me.

And when I say “love” – I mean heart pounding, fully committed, in it for life, heart and soul kind of love; passionate and full of anticipation. The kind of love that surfaces as the first thought in the morning and the last thing on my mind before I go to bed. It’s the kind of love that has infinite hope and a herculean capacity to persevere. It’s the kind of love that makes me weep when I describe it to others. MOTIVATED is nothing short of a gift for me to create; it is my life’s work.

But I have to tell you… this issue, this issue that explores the theme of tenacity, has been an induced labour. Painful. Requiring forceps. No epidural in sight.

Yes, screaming was involved.

In hindsight, I realize it unfolded exactly in the manner it did to teach me more about tenacity as it relates to timing; be careful what you wish for! For past issues, I’d select a theme I feel is worth exploring and a picture of who I best feel represents that theme automatically appeared in my mind’s eye. Through awe inspiring synchronicities, that person shows up in my inbox or in my life immediately, and I feature them on the cover. This issue has been different. Jean-Robert de Cavel appears on the cover because I believe in every fibre of my being, he was destined to. My plan was superceded.

This brings me to the spectacularly beautiful, talented, and brilliant Patty Scott. Patty saw me speak in Ohio many months ago, was moved by my message that we’re capable of doing anything we set our minds to when we say “yes” to possibility, and extended her hand and help should I need it. Jean-Robert de Cavel is on the cover of our summer issue because Patty had the courage to be in the labour room with me and, as a result of our journey together, we have both grown exponentially. Patty and I have been reminded that tenacity creates masterpieces and for this reason, I think we’ll both reserve a special place in our hearts for this issue. I know Patty has imprinted my heart forever.

Tenacity is often confused with persistence and endurance. They’re definitely from the same family, you see the resemblance at first glance, but like most family members, they’re drastically different in a multitude of ways. Tenacity is rooted deeply in intestinal fortitude. It’s something inside of us that allows us to respond to unexpected challenges, delayed business growth, and horrific tragedies. For me, it truly separates those that tend to achieve in quantum leaps and those that don’t.

Tenacity keeps hope close to her heart. A hope and belief that things are unfolding the way they’re supposed to, even when our expectations aren’t being met. And because of hope, because of a belief that anything is possible, Tenacity achieves on a scale that others simply don’t, because others fail to entertain the possibilities before them.

Having drawn the short end of the stick or handed a bad poker hand, Tenacity accepts her reality and chooses what she’ll do with what she’s been dealt. Tenacity never chooses to be the victim and this is why, in movies and in life, we applaud her. Tenacity is a deeply courageous human characteristic.

And so I pay forward to you today the importance of making a personal commitment to yourself to never, ever give up. Choose to pair optimism with hope, anchor it internally – deeply – so that nothing external can ever touch it. Choose it and, like the phenomenal Canadian singer Amy Sky (pg. 34), award winning writer Terry Fallis (pg. 44), and ice cream mogul Jerry Greenfield (pg. 22), you may surprise yourself as to what you can accomplish! Strategically set goals as suggested by Dave Ramsey (pg. 49) and then commit, like Simon Sinek, to being crystal clear about your intention (pg. 11). Like Tim Sanders, promise to finish every race you start (pg. 30); seek out a coach if you need to, one like Elaine Overholt who helps celebrities unleash the voice trapped inside (pg. 62). And finally, recognize, as Jean-Robert de Cavel has, the value of the champions around you; the healing power of a community, and new birth as the ultimate reward of tenacity (pg. 52).

Choose to keep going even when it’s painful, when there’s no end in sight, and when you can no longer see the big picture. Find champions, pursue significant work, and trust that the solutions might be just around the corner.

Just never, ever, ever, ever give up. Ever.

You are remarkable and beautiful and talented beyond measure. As always, I believe in you. You only have today.