Positively Unshakeable: How to Have an Amazing Life in the Face of Life-Changing Events
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My basic message is, whatever hand life deals you (whether your fault or not), whatever life-changing adversity you have to endure, there are ALWAYS things that you can do, things that you still have some control over to not just live well, but live an AMAZING LIFE if you have the faith in yourself, discipline, determination, desire, intensity, inner strength, WILL to DO what you CAN do to live an amazing life filled with purpose.
For me, it was having Parkinson’s disease in my 30’s; I am 54 today and have very few symptoms. (Click on the Davis Phinney – Olympic medalist with PD – box on the front page of this website to hear him tell my story).
Three Secrets Revealed – How to Live an Amazing Life with Parkinson’s: You Have the Ability to Control More of your Quality of Life than you Think
I have Parkinson’s disease; it does NOT have me.
These are not just words: they are my life’s mission. I will continue to do ALL the things I have always done as well as I can, for as long as I can and, along the way, help (mentor) as many people as possible. This applies to any life-changing events that we may experience during our lives.
Some set as a goal: To Live Well with Parkinson’s. I say, “Don’t settle for just living well. Instead, choose to Live an Amazing Life with Parkinson’s or, for that matter, any other life-changing condition.”
How is that possible?
It means doing whatever it takes to slow this, or any other, disease or condition, including:
(1) only putting healthy things into your body;
(2) exercise every day beyond your comfort zone; and
(3) maintain a positive attitude – get “engaged.”
It would behoove any one, with or without an adverse life-changing event, to do adopt these life principles; however, enduring the residual and ongoing effects of such an event increases the necessity.
These things are not always easy to do. In fact, they are often very hard, but you HAVE to do it. You have no choice. This is your new JOB. Not one that you applied for or sought out in any way, but one that you obtained just the same.
This life is not a dress rehearsal. It is the live production. Each of us has the power and strength within us if we dig deep enough. Dig deep. This is what I talk about in my inspirational, motivational and educational presentations in the United States and around the world (www.JohnBaumann.com).
First, schedule out what you will be eating and when each day for the week. Simply put, watch lots of documentaries (i.e. Food Matters, Forks Over Knives, Vegucated, Hungry For Change, and Fed Up). They will change your thinking about what you put in your body.
Second, schedule out your exercise plan for the week. You need to perform daily exercises that result in you stretching, sweating and strengthening beyond your comfort zone. I recommend hot yoga, deep tissue massages plus some additional strength training. You will need to get used to the hot environment, but, for me, yoga has done wonders.
Third, I only spend time with positive people, read inspirational information and watch uplifting programs including, you guessed it, documentaries (i.e. I Am and Happy). I have focused upon the “silver lining” and not the dark cloud that is Parkinson’s. I have worked through, and am still working through, the emotional rollercoaster of denial, disbelief, shock, embarrassment, anger, sadness, disappointment and depression. I have not just accepted Parkinson’s in my life, but have actually embraced it.
Stay “engaged.” I am a professional speaker, author, and teacher, now instead of an attorney. I get to influence young minds by speaking on success at schools and other organizations. I get to travel the world teaching my twelve Decide Success principles (my book is titled Decide Success: You Ain’t Dead Yet) and inspiring people who have had an adverse or tragic life-changing events, including (but not exclusively) being diagnosed with Parkinson’s or had a loved one diagnosed with Parkinson’s.
My “spare” time is spent helping nonprofit causes like Make-A-Wish Foundation and various Parkinson’s associations. In fact, although I am new to Arizona, I am Chair the annual Parkinson’s Moving Day Phoenix event.
The world’s response to the “Ice Bucket Challenge” confirms my deeply held belief that people simply care about each other. To endure iced water poured over your head and to send donations in the magnitude of what has been received is truly heartwarming.
I am a different person than I was pre-Parkinson’s. Some have said, “A kinder, gentler John Baumann.” One set of “blinders” has been removed. I see things that I have never noticed before concerning what really matters in life. I am not as interested in material things. I have a whole new set of “real” friends in the Parkinson’s, yoga and fitness community that I have “bonded” with due to our common issues and passions. I feel like I am making a “difference.” My life has purpose and I am focused upon leaving a legacy.
In addition, I am more physically fit than I have ever been in my life. I have lost those 40 pounds that I knew that I needed to lose, but never even tried. My bad cholesterol level is down from 180 (very high) to 105 (normal). The unbelievably part is that I have had this degenerative, progressive, irreversible, neurological, incurable disease for almost 13 years and you would not know it by looking at me (at least most of the time).
Finally, and most importantly, during my journey with Parkinson’s, I met and married my love, my chef, my workout partner, my friend, my sidekick, my wife, my Bernadette. I truly am living an Amazing Life with Parkinson’s. So can you.
We have inspired, and are available to inspire, any size audience. You can watch us speak on various subjects on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOMJ2YHMcp8PSZ0aQU6SifQ/videos.
If you know of any association or company that is looking for someone to motivate their employees or inspire their members at an annual meeting or in smaller groups, please pass along my contact information. We have never had an agent or speaker’s bureau and, instead, are depending upon our contacts to help us continue to fulfill our life’s purpose. Thank you.
John and Bernadette Baumann
Inspired by Parkinson’s
Welcome to the next chapter of the continuing set of experiences that is life.
“You are the real deal.” – former Congressman Romano L. Mazzoli (October 2013)
“I can’t tell you how much we enjoyed you, your presentation and Bernadette and Oliver! Nothing but praise coming in: ‘best keynote speaker we’ve ever had, etc.,etc.’ You shared a lot of love this weekend in Milwaukee, John!” – Vicki Conte, Program Manager, Department of Neurology, Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin (September 2013).
Member, National Speakers Association
Author, DECIDE SUCCESS and Courageous Stories of Inspiration
Faculty, University of Louisville
Commentator, CNN Headline News
John has made presentations with amazing reviews, among other places, in Atlanta, Baton Rouge, Birmingham, Burlington (VT), Buffalo, Charlotte, Chicago, Cincinnati, Edison (NJ), Houston, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Louisville, Miami, Milwaukee, New Orleans, Orlando, Palm Desert (CA), Philadelphia, Phoenix, Regina (Canada), Rochester (NY), Sioux Falls (SD), St. Louis, St. Thomas (VI), San Juan (PR), Santa Fe, Tulsa, Utica (NY), and will be speaking at the World Parkinson Congress with an estimated 6,000 delegates in Montreal in October. John is married to Bernadette, who often appears with John, to speak on being an “icare partner” and their exercise/nutrition regime.