Robert Paylor is near the end of his presentation. QLI’s packed auditorium is pin-drop silent as his wife, Karsen, enters carrying a walker.  She places it in front of Robert’s wheelchair and he reaches for the handles. He’s locked in and ready, but suddenly his legs shoot straight out and viciously shake. Robert and Karsen are unfazed as they wait patiently for the spasm to subside. Karsen then steadies the right side of the walker as Robert scoots forward in his chair. He grasps the handle with his left hand and pushes up hard. Robert’s legs are now his ally. He rises, stands tall, and delivers his final moving words as many in the crowd dab tears from their eyes.

Robert Paylor stands for something more than himself. He stands for the firm belief that, while we cannot always control the challenging events that befall us, we can seize control of how we respond.

During his day and a half visit to QLI, Robert showed the same grit and resolve that drove him on the rugby field as a star player on the legendary UC Berkeley championship team. It was there where Robert’s life took an abrupt and unasked for turn. Robert sustained a severe spinal cord injury after an opposing player injured him during an illegal maneuver. Robert’s prognosis was bleak and a doctor informed him he would never walk again. But Robert refused to be immobilized. He forged forward.

Robert believes we are all paralyzed by something. But, with an outlook fueled by optimism and gratitude, we can build resilience to tackle the challenges life throws our way.

Some keys to Robert’s winning philosophy are to establish a healthy mental diet by focusing on things we can control. Robert also recommends practicing a positive perspective through our personal experiences and others while celebrating the smaller victories in life.

The time Robert spent with our clients and team members reinforced and bolstered our belief that the mental and emotional elements of rehabilitation and recovery are essential components we should never overlook. It’s something we need to stand for.

For more on Robert’s story and how to book him as a speaker, click below: