Nick Vujicic shares his advice for overcoming bullying and the bullying epidemic
Nick Vujicic was born without arms and legs. He overcame his disability and now at 28 years old is an international motivational speaker. He speaks to millions of people, both in person and through his books. His latest book, Life Without Limits, has a powerful message of building a life of fulfillment and happiness.
Vujicic always has a smile on his face. But when he was a kid he struggled with self-esteem issues. He prayed a lot and wondered why he was different from other kids. His family and friends encouraged him and helped him overcome his obstacles.
“If it wasn’t for my family and friends, I would not have been here,” Vujicic told the Kids Press Corps in early October. “They were the ones who believed in me and loved me. They told me that God has a plan for me.”
Even so, Vujicic still had to deal with depression, loneliness, and bullying. People mocked him for being different.
October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month, and Vujicic knows the harm bullying can do. Bullying was the main reason why Vujicic tried to commit suicide when he was ten by drowning himself in a bathtub.
“A lot of people don’t understand that bullying is a major problem,” Vujicic said. “There are people dying. And if people don’t commit suicide, they’re still dead on the inside.”
Many bullies torment others, he said, because they have low self-esteem and are insecure. Like the people they bully, they don’t know who they’re supposed to be, either. The only thing that makes them feel like they have self-worth is pushing other people around.
“It’s very cowardly to tease,” continued Vujicic. “It’s scary. It’s hard to stop.”
But it’s not impossible.
Confronting bullying can be a difficult and scary thing. But Vujicic said that taking life one day at a time is the best path forward. It’s going to get better.
He conquered his battles by coming back to the truth of who he is.
“I know that my value is not determined by how I look, what I can’t do, or how many friends I have,” he said. “I’m Nick Vujicic and there’s not another Nick Vujicic out there.”
Today, he works to help others find their own personal truths and overcome bullying — whatever form it takes.
Visit his webiste for more information about Vujicic and his campaign to end the bullying epidemic
First Published @Scholastic Inc, http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3756616.
“Don’t forget to introduce yourself, give him a hug, introduce us, and take a family picture with him!” A sharp voice snapped me back to the present. My mom frantically paced back and forth in front of me. I was anxious and worried, but my mom was probably even more nervous than I was. My family and I were waiting in a cold, air-conditioned room for Nick Vujicic, to arrive. The limbless, limitless man has been the inspiration to millions of people, and now I would finally be able to meet him! The thought of meeting such a God-honoring man gave me shivers of excitement.
Finally, the door opened. A high wheelchair rolled into the room, and the sight of this handsome young man overwhelmed me. I stepped forward and breathlessly introduced myself, my parents and my brother. One of his favorite ice breaker was “Gimme a hug.” So all of us gave him a hug, and it was a unique warm, touched feeling that I will never forget. I wanted to cry, laugh, and tell the world that I had just hugged Nick Vujicic!
The nervous, panicky atmosphere had disappeared in a flash. His smile lightened up the entire room as we made introductions. Just as I was about to launch into the interview, Nick told me to pause.
“Let me tell you something really cool. If you prayed before the interview, it’ll really make sure that there are no technical difficulties,” he said. “Lord Jesus, we thank you for Cassandra. We thank you for the team. We thank you Lord that your presence is here and that you have touched so many people. Let there be no technical difficulties and bless Cassandra’s heart. May you encourage her and let others be encouraged. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Wow, he really is a man after God’s own heart, I thought, impressed and amazed. The interview started, and I couldn’t look away. His eyes were a mesmerizing sea of blue, and he never let his intense gaze leave my eyes. I felt like I could tell him anything in the world, and I totally forgot about the other people in the room. I soaked up every single word he said. When Nick told me that he had tried to suicide when he was ten, I almost cried. I tried to remain objective as a reporter, but it took a lot of effort to hold my tears in.
He was so sincere, genuine, and humble. I told him that he had been my hero since the 3rd grade, and his first reaction was to be surprised. “Are you serious?” he grinned, although I’m pretty sure millions of others have told him that he was their hero. He said, “Gimme a hug.” This was the second time I got to hug him.
Nick also was very considerate. He invited Jeremy into the picture – just a photo of the two of them. Nick made Jeremy feel so much more than just a tag-along sibling on a sister’s big assignment. Jeremy was on cloud nine!
I reflected on what he had said as he signed my book. He showed me that we can learn to accept what we can’t control and focus instead on what we can control. If a limbless man could live out such an extraordinary fulfilling life, why couldn’t I? I also learned the secret to his inner joy – knowing that God is always with him and has a purpose for his life. Nick knows where he’s going: to heaven, where there is no pain and suffering.
“The cool thing is that there is one thing better than going to heaven,” he said. “It’s to stay here today and bring one more person with us to heaven.”
We all took a family picture with him . I couldn’t believe what I just experienced! This was my most heart-warming, uplifting, inspiring night that I will never forget! Thank you Jesus for letting me to have cross paths with Nick Vujicic so that I will have faith to build a rewarding and productive life without limits.