No arms, no legs, no capital, no man power, just a functional mind and a dream…

It’s amazing what you can do when you put your mind to it! Only when you have no choice, or maybe better put, ‘it is your only choice’ to live any sort of feasible life these simple words take on a whole new meaning

Mark Rostoks
Mark Rostoks

And for me personally this is my life. I mean just to get out of bed in the morning it takes two hours, and then if I want to leave the house it often takes several days planning – but hey I’m still smiling. All the same, as you can see achieving things is that whole new meaning.

Only why is this so… am I really that lazy!? Well yes… but I guess I do have a fairly reasonable excuse – I’m a quadriplegic with countless high medical needs. Oh look I know I know ladies don’t line up all at once 😉

But hey jokes aside, I’m still here alive and kicking! See my illness has threatened my life on numerous occasions (even at times on a daily basis), but mate that big fella up top, I reckon he’s keeping me around for a reason!? And well I suppose it is also true that I do have a lot to pass on from lived experience.

And life in general… as far as career prospects went, as most bullshit-artists do, I really fancied myself as an advertising copywriter. Only at age 23 that whole health thing came crashing down; and even the commonplace desires of marriage and family were forced to the way side. Still I’ve tried to make the most of my predicament and cope as best I could.

“For me nowadays though, this Life Coaching thing, well it has provided an avenue where I can practice the law of reciprocity (and pay my dues). Undoubtedly many people have helped me on my way”

Mark Rostoks
Mark Rostoks

My coaching journey started in late 2013 (my intake was Feb 2014), and blimey hasn’t this whole thing put a rocket under my ass! And what I’ve really liked about it, all the content is oh so practical. I mean I’ve explored Buddhism extensively, so I was already aware of a spiritual life strategy, but with all these different models, fancy questioning and hoo haa, it made practical application so much easier.

Then, as with most new students, I began to look at my own life with a fine tooth comb. However with me (being in such a volatile life predicament) my self-development journey has continually escalated, more and more and more. In fact I’m just starting to get a hold on things now - personal responsibility 101.

Also, thankfully, very early on in my journey another student (Sarah) summed this up perfectly for me. And hearing these words really helped me understand the process too.

“You've chosen a path that most people are too scared to even find out about. You have chosen to not only learn about yourself, and how you can connect with the full potential of the man you can become, but so much more than that, you've chosen to learn the tools and the skills that it takes to be able to pass it forward, to contribute, to really make a difference in the lives of others.... and that Matters”

Mark Rostoks
Mark Rostoks

Damn still cuts deep reading it now, anyways obviously I was on my way. Imagination, never giving up and making the most of what I’ve got – that’s what got me through - oh and of course with the help of my very own Coach, Mariane!

Now to the trainings, well I’ve only done 3 so far. And how what & when, well rather than simply listing what I learnt I’d much rather say what they’ve meant to me – and that’s a challenge! I mean for someone who typically leaves the house for maybe 2-3hrs p/w to then attending a 3 day seminar, it really does take me my all. Health requirements, anxiety and exhaustion, crikey talk about busted ass!!?

But I’m coping, and the TCI staff have been so great in accommodating my needs. In fact, in many ways, I feel like our journey together & working together is only just beginning.

That’s why I feel so humbled by being asked to write this, you see sure I’ve come a long way but I feel like I’ve still got a long way to go too. So yep ‘love where you’re at’ and all that, but to me fulfilment is a little further down the road. Yeah I’m still trying to get my head around all that.

And what does it look like… well unlike the majority of TCI students I’m not looking to create a coaching business at all, rather a support network type enterprise to help people ‘grow through’ their adversities – much like I’ve tried to do in my own life. TCI is helping me gain clarity around personal growth.

So this business/organisation… it’s Grow Through. And to be perfectly honest this is the ‘community’ that I’ve been trying to find for years [for support with my own obvious challenges] only it never actually existed. Well yee-hah now it does 🙂

Here’s our mission:

‘In life it's not whether you meet adversity, but how, and at Grow Through our mission is to give power to a social movement committed to making this process ok and more manageable - or ideally a vehicle for positive change. In turn, our aim is to make this philosophy manifest, thus giving every person not only the opportunity, but the desire to grow through their circumstance.’

Dang!

So yep this is where I’m at. I’ve got a vision and I’m following it. No arms, no legs, no capital, no man power, just a functional mind and a dream. So nope… no important milestones to share, no paying clients to brag about, and no big corporate contracts either.

Only as I stated earlier – It’s amazing what you can do when you put your mind to it!

That’s what success is to me.

Mark Rostoks
Mark Rostoks