A life-altering injury


What does a life-altering injury look like? An injury looks different from many different vantage points. Last year I was “handed” a huge compliment, “If anyone asked me what a life altering injury looks like I will tell them about your story.” The goal of my crusade is to provide a deep enough glimpse of that alteration that people don’t have to endure it themselves.

“Learn from the misfortune of others rather than your own.” – Aesop

In my case, the alteration came after the injury due to the amount of time I took to stop and reflect on the impact that an unsafe decision had in my life. There’s a saying that “Practice makes Perfect”, but it would be more accurately stated “Practice makes Permanent”. We can do something unsafe many times without reflecting on the potential risk we are facing each time we carry out that activity. The reflection of the activity should lead us to understanding potential hazards we may be exposed to. Reflection should also offer an opportunity to reconcile how we are doing an activity with how we’ve been trained to do an activity.

“We don’t learn by doing, we learn by reflecting on what we’re doing.” – Piaget

I make no bones about it, my injury was never life threatening. In fact, in most of my audiences someone has endured a more life threatening risk than I did. Over time I’ve realized I have carried out a number of activities that included potential life threatening risks. These situations were based on a very weak safety culture and awareness and they have become stories that I share in my presentations and on my website.

You have your own stories of near misses that you may have never shared, don’t let that insight go to waste, share it with someone else. One of our biggest enemies is our own complacency to correct an action. Take time to reflect on a near-miss and decide what actions you need to put in place to prevent it from happening to you, or anyone else.

You don’t need an injury to have a life altering experience. Perhaps this blog, or the chance to hear my message in person has already created that life altering opportunity. Seize it today and focus on eliminating hazards you’ve been ignoring.

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