What Can We Do When We Get Knocked Down?

By Greg Baer M.D.

December 28, 2012

Floyd Patterson (January 4, 1935 - May 11, 2006) was an American professional boxer and at age 21, the youngest man to win the title of Undisputed Heavyweight Champion. He also participated in one of the most famous fights of all time, a series of three matches with Ingemar Johansson, the Swedish champion. Patterson won the series two out of three, but he lost the first bout after being knocked to the canvas seven times in one round. That was something of a record, and despite his being world champion, people often remember him for those seven knockdowns.

Patterson once said, "They said I was the fighter who got knocked down the most, but I also got up the most."

In sports we reward people for crossing the finish line first, but in life we're richly rewarded simply for participating, rather than for reaching some mythical finish line. No matter how well prepared we might be, there will be people and circumstances that will overwhelm our capacity to stand, and we'll fall. In the end it won't matter how many times that happens as long as we get up each time.

The more love we receive and share with others, the easier it is to get up.

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About the author 

Greg Baer, M.D.

I am the founder of The Real Love® Company, Inc, a non-profit organization. Following the sale of my successful ophthalmology practice I have dedicated the past 25 years to teaching people a remarkable process that replaces all of life's "crazy" with peace, confidence and meaning in various aspects of their personal lives, including parenting, marriages, the workplace and more.

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