A Mountain in the Way
In 1959 a man by the name of Dashrath Manjhi was working in the fields outside of his small village of Gaya in Bihar, India. As he was working, his wife, Falguni Devi, was coming to meet him, crossing a mountain to get to him. She was pregnant and the heat from sun was overwhelming. She slipped and fell down the mountain.
When Dashrath was alerted he rushed her to the nearest hospital. Unfortunately the nearest hospital was blocked by a mountain. Instead they had to travel 43 miles to get her care. After they arrived, Falguni gave birth to a baby girl. Unfortunately Falguni didn’t make it.
A Road Built a Spoonful at a Time
Dashrath was heart-broken and devastated. If only that mountain weren’t there, his wife would have lived. Many people would have left it there and just cursed the mountain and their situation. Dashrath was different. Dashrath took action.
He sold his goats and bought some rudimentary tools: a hammer, a chisel, and a crowbar. Then he attacked the mountain.
Day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, he chiseled away at the mountain. Like Andy Dufresne in Shawshank Redemption who created a path to freedom a spoonful at a time, Dashrath eventually created a road that cut the path to healthcare by 25 miles. He created a path through a mountain that was 360 feet long, 30 feet wide, and at parts 30 feet high.
A Simple Step
Which brings me to some good news! You probably don’t need to tear down a mountain with just a hammer and chisel. I have even better news: Dashrath Manjhi has proven that you can.
How? One day at a time.
It’s easy to look at the bumps, hills, or mountains in our lives as unconquerable, but the only thing that makes them that way is the fear that we can’t do it. Simply taking a step each day moves you toward your goal. It’s not the single, big steps that change things, but that consistent, forward momentum that makes the difference.