The benefits of muscadine grapes.

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It’s North Carolina’s state fruit, it tastes delicious and it’s an emerg- ing nutrition superstar. Native to North Carolina, scuppernong and other muscadine grapes are grown in the backyards of many Eastern North Carolina homes. They are among the richest sources of antioxi- dants found in nature. Muscadine grapes are a leading food source for a potent cancer-fighting substance called resveratrol. A theory about why resveratrol is protective in humans and animals is that our genes respond to plant defensive chemicals in a beneficial way. Plantings of native muscadine grapes, also known as scuppernongs, are relatively pest resistant and thrive in the hot, sandy conditions of the coastal region. The coastal climate necessitates resistance to disease, viruses, bacteria, pests and mold. The plant’s adaptation to these conditions has developed unique properties that have significant health benefits for those who consume the muscadine grape.

The typical American consumes only two or three servings of fruit and vegetables a day. A single 1-cup serving of muscadine grapes would more than double the average person’s antioxidant intake. That positions muscadines and scuppernongs in the elite list of powerful antioxidant foods that includes blueberries, plums, pomegranate, blackberries, cranberries and raspberries.

Muscadine grapes are fat free, high in fiber and they are high in antioxidants, especially ellagic acid and resveratrol. Ellagic acid has demonstrated anticarcinogenic properties in the colon, lungs and liver of mice. Resveratrol is reported to lower cholesterol levels and the risk of coronary heart disease. This article reports on a growing

Muscadine grapes, wines and nutraceuticals may be beneficial in prevention of heart disease and cancer.

body of research on the health benefits of drinking wine or taking the nutraceuticals, but it’s important to note that the beneficial effects are also in the grapes themselves. Eating the fruit alone, in desserts, sauces or juice can give health benefits.

MUSCADINES AND HEART DISEASE

Researchers have wondered for years how the French could eat a diet rich in cream, butter and cheese, resulting in a high-fat diet equivalent to the American diet, yet the French have a much lower incidence of heart disease than Americans. France’s heart attack rate is one-third that of the U.S. The answer is the French custom of drinking wine with meals. The Copenhagen City Heart Study, published in the British Medical Journal, showed that among more than 13,000 men and women aged 30 to 70 who were tracked for 12 years and consumed wine daily, 50% less likely to die during the study than consumers of other alcoholic beverages or nondrinkers. It’s important to note that health benefits were greatest with only two or three glasses of wine per day (one for women). Drinking more increased health risks.

DIABETES, METABOLIC SYNDROME AND WEIGHT CONTROL

Metabolic syndrome is a combination of interacting metabolic disorders including impaired glucose tolerance, decreased insulin sensitivity, hyperglycemia, lower HDL cholesterol (known as the “good cholesterol” ), high triglycerides and usually elevated total cholesterol. Persons with metabolic syndrome have an increased risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, atherosclerosis and stroke. Metabolic syndrome is an epidemic in populations that consume high-calorie diets and live a sedentary lifestyle (e.g., many Americans).

Abdominal obesity and hypertension are often present with meta- bolic syndrome. A university study examined “central adiposity”— the fat around our midsections in over 12,000 people. “Increases in waist- to-hip ratio,” explained University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill researcher Bruce Duncan, “predicted increases in risk of death in the Iowa Women’s Health Study.” In popular terms, being shaped like an apple increases the risk of heart disease. Several studies have shown that moderate consumption of wine (one or two glasses per day), as part of a healthy diet, did not contribute to weight gain, compared to other types of alcoholic beverages.

Drinking wine with meals is shown to have greater health benefits than drinking wine by itself, according to research done in Italy on 70,000 subjects.

Wine is traditionally consumed at mealtimes and for centuries has occupied a prominent place on the dinner table in many cultures around the world. Drinking with dinner assures that the protective effects of alcohol are strongest in the evening, when fats from the din- ner meal circulate through the bloodstream, and carry over to the next morning when most heart attacks take place. Recent research shows that muscadine juice and muscadine wine have a positive effect on type 2 diabetes by decreasing blood-glucose levels, improving cholesterol status, lowering triglycerides and prevention of blood clotting.

Muscadine wines have significantly more resveratrol than wines from other grape varieties. If you don’t want to drink muscadine wine, however, you can get the health benefits by taking an antioxidant dietary supplement containing resveratrol.

Health benefits were greatest with only two to three glasses of wine a day (one for women). Drinking more increases health risks

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Health benefits were greatest with only two or three glasses of wine a day (one for women).

CANCER PREVENTION

Recent tests show that resveratrol from muscadine grapes can block cancer cells from attacking organs, thus preventing spread of the dis- ease once it starts. Andrew Dannenberg, Director of Clinical Programs at the Strang Cancer Prevention Center in New York City, showed that resveratrol was very effective as an inhibitor of the growth of COX, a compound present in breast cancer and other cancers. Compounds that inhibit COX are considered very promising agents in preventing cancer by making cancer cells vulnerable to the body’s natural defenses. Initial studies showed that resveratrol inhibits tumor growth at three different stages —initiation, promotion and progression.

Prostate cancer patients received information about muscadine grape-skin extract (MKSE), reported in Cancer Research in September 2007. Using a series of human prostate cancer cells representing dif- ferent stages of prostate cancer progression, the researchers showed MSKE significantly inhibited tumor cell growth in all prostate cancer cell lines, exhibiting high rates of apoptosis (programmed cell death). Results showed that MSKE and resveratrol target distinct pathways to inhibit prostate cancer cell growth and the unique properties of MSKE suggest that it may be an important source for further development of chemopreventive or therapeutic agents against prostate cancer.

Anthocyanins, which produce the red and purple colors of the grapes, have strong antioxidant activity and have shown several anti- tumor effects, including inhibition of DNA synthesis in breast cancer cells, of blood-vessel growth in some tumors and of enzymes involved in tumor spread. Tests in cell culture have shown that berry extracts including muscadine (which is a berry) reduce cancer cell growth (or cause increased cancer cell death) in colon cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer and leukemia models.

Resveratrol taken orally also protects the skin from damage that leads to skin cancer. A review of 70 published studies concluded that resveratrol treatment helped prevent damage to skin and stopped the development of cancer cells.

Ellagic acid, which is abundant in muscadines, raspberries, black raspberries, strawberries and walnuts, is powerful in chemoprevention of cancer. Chemoprevention eliminates the need for chemotherapy

because the cancer does not occur. Ellagic acid is being aggressively investigated for chemoprevention.

LONGEVITY

Subjects fed resveratrol were healthier, leaner and lived up to 30% longer, even though they were on high-calorie, high-fat diets, accord- ing to an ongoing Harvard study. Researchers believe that resveratrol activates the same genetic longevity pathways as calorie restriction, the only diet known to extend lifespan.

LONGEVITY AND MENTAL FUNCTION

New studies at the Harvard Medical School and the Institute of Genetics and Molecular and Cellular Biology have found that resve- ratrol, a natural antioxidant found in red wine grapes, may radically reduce the risk not only of heart disease, but also of age-related ill- nesses such as Alzheimer’s disease. It may also counteract the effects of a high-fat diet and even prolong life. “This could arguably be the biggest medical discovery since antibiotics,” says Joseph Baur, Ph.D., an author of the Harvard study. It is believed that the assortment of antioxidants found in muscadine grapes and the seeds slow the effects of aging and possibly extend life. Coupled with smart dietary choices, avoidance of risk factors and physical activity, plus eating of muscadine grapes or taking grape supplement can add 10 years to your life. In the Harvard study, mice that were fed the substance resveratrol were healthier, leaner and lived up to 30% longer, even though they were on high-calorie, high-fat diets. Dr. Baur believes that resveratrol activates the same genetic longevity pathways as calorie restriction, the only diet known to extend life span.

Maintaining good mental function as we age is important. Oxidative stress (i.e. free radical damage) is part of what makes the brain age and cause degenerative conditions, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s. The American Journal of Epidemiology reported on a French study, called the Paquid study, wherein 1,640 subjects aged 65 years or older and free from dementia at baseline, were tested over a 10-year period. Subjects with higher antioxidant flavonoid intake had better cognitive evolution than other subjects. The researchers also determined that antioxidant flavonoid intake was inversely related to risk of dementia. Quercetin, which was cited in the study, is a flavonoid that is found in high concentration in muscadine grapes and grape seeds.

ANTIOXIDANTS FIGHT FREE RADICAL DAMAGE

Your real age can be thought of in two ways: your biological age or the amount of free radical damage that has occurred within your body. A free radical assaults cells in the body to find a partner for its unpaired electron. The highly charged, highly unstable molecular fragment punctures cell membranes, destroys enzymes and even breaks down DNA to steal an electron from another molecule. Some free radicals occur naturally, as cells burn food for energy. Other free radicals de- rive from exposure to ultraviolet radiation (sunlight), radon, X-rays, pollutants, pesticides, food additives, alcohol and other toxins. An antioxidant can neutralize a free radical by donating one of its electrons without jeopardizing its own chemical stability. Left unchecked, free radicals start chain reactions that damage cells. Antioxidants terminate these chain reactions by being oxidized themselves.

Antioxidants are a class of molecules that includes polyphenols, fla- vonoids and isoflavones. The family of antioxidants found in muscadine grapes, seeds and skins includes resveratrol, ellagic acid, quercetin,

daidzein, genistein and several others. The use of antioxidants has been intensively studied because free radicals have been implicated in many diseases and many symptoms of aging. Antioxidants are used as dietary supplements in the hope of maintaining health and prevent- ing diseases.

Antioxidants can make a difference in how quickly and how well we age. As we grow older, we begin to show the side effects of our decreasing supply of antioxidants. It is estimated that by age 40 our antioxidant level is at 50%, and by age 60 is down to 10%. Free radi- cals can damage important cellular molecules such as DNA or other parts of the cell, and may be responsible for numerous age-related diseases, including cancer, LDL (bad) cholesterol, premature aging, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, symptoms of menopause, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, cataracts, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, pancreatitis and many others.

SKIN CARE, INSIDE AND OUT

Truly beautiful skin is a result of healthy skin that is cared for both on the surface and from within, with proper care of the whole body. The body utilizes antioxidants to battle the damaging effects of free radicals. As we age, the body produces fewer antioxidants and skin begins to show the cumulative damage. Damage to collagen and mi- crocapillaries in the skin causes a decrease in nutrients that get to the skin, which leads to the loss of youthful appearance. Microcapillaries are the smallest of a body’s blood vessels and enable the interchange of nutrients between blood and the surrounding tissues. Antioxidants strengthen capillary walls and keep them flexible and unobstructed. Both nutraceuticals and cosmeceuticals from the muscadine grape can play a role in maintaining healthy, youthful-looking skin.

NUTRACEUTICALS FROM THE MUSCADINE GRAPE

As research continues to show the health benefits of the muscadine grape, there is growing interest in finding easy sources of resveratrol and the other antioxidants so plentiful in the fruit. Grape growers have developed the technology to harness the goodness of the grape in grape-seed or grape-skin capsules and food supplements. It’s important for consumers to know that muscadine is the only grape that contains

Drinking wine with dinner provides more protective effects than drinking wine by itself.

resveratrol in the seed. (Other grape varieties contain resveratrol only in the skin.) When buying grape-seed capsules or food supplements, look for products made from the muscadine to be sure you’re getting all the goodness that nature can give. Capturing the goodness of the grape in a capsule ensures a concentration of phytochemicals and the synergy that those compounds produce for the maximum benefit without consuming the alcohol or calories. ■

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TO BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM FOR MAXIMUM PROTECTION AND IMMUNITY.

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With the fast, worldwide reach of the media, it seems like every year we hear about a new illness outbreak looming on the horizon. In 2001 it was anthrax, 2002 was West Nile virus, 2003 was SARS, and in the following years it’s been H1N1 influenza, Ebola, and Zika viruses, among others. And now in 2020, we have a new coronavirus emerging.

The World Health Organization has now declared the coronavirus outbreak centered in Wuhan, China a “public health emergency of international concern,” with cases diagnosed as far as Europe, Thailand, Japan, and the US. This currently rivals the SARS coronavirus outbreak as far as total numbers, but the relative good news is that the fatality rate is much lower at 2 percent right now. Unfortunately, the media coverage and medical system response is enough to create panic for anyone.

Fortunately, all viruses share the same fundamental weaknesses, and there’s so much we can do to safely, easily, and naturally exploit these weaknesses to boost our immune system and protect ourselves from getting sick. For instance, did you know the magnesium chloride that is commonly used even in hospital ICU departments to save lives can also help fight off a virus? It’s true, and magnesium chloride is readily available for home use as well, so you don’t have to get sick to have access to it. And you can easily make it into a gel to apply to your children’s skin, so you don’t have to worry about getting them to take a pill.

With a basic understanding of how common viruses spread, some simple common sense precautions, and nutrients to boost your immune system, you can help protect your family from this public health menace.

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The first thing you need to know about fighting off viruses is that the earlier you start, the better your interventions work. Don’t wait until you have a fever and cough, start at the first sign of a sniffle or that feeling that you might be coming down with something. Pay attention to local media and area schools with what they announce is going around, and boost your immune system ahead of time so you never have to miss a day of work.

When you have to go out in public during a viral illness outbreak (like flu season) to run errands or attend events, make sure you understand how the virus is spread and take appropriate measures. Most viral illnesses that cause outbreaks are airborne. This means they spread through tiny droplets that come from coughs and sneezes, and can travel all the way across a crowded room through the air, landing on solid surfaces or being breathed in.

Door knobs, shopping carts, keypads at the checkout, chair arms, and even the items you touch while shopping can all have contaminated droplets on them. While you are out, take special care to not touch your face and wash your hands regularly, or at least once you leave the store. If you are immune-compromised, wear a mask.

School children should wash hands regularly throughout the day, and athletes who play sports like basketball need to be aware the germs can travel on the ball and they need to use a towel (not their hands) to wipe sweat from their faces, and wash their hands after playing.

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Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and what to do to prepare yourself and family members.

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Illness Severity

The complete clinical picture with regard to COVID-19 is not fully known. Reported illnesses have ranged from very mild (including some with no reported symptoms) to severe, including illness resulting in death. While information so far suggests that most COVID-19 illness is mild, a report out of China suggests serious illness occurs in 16% of cases. Older people and people of all ages with severe underlying health conditions — like heart disease, lung disease and diabetes, for example — seem to be at higher risk of developing serious COVID-19 illness .

 

It is important to note that current circumstances suggest it is likely that this virus will cause a pandemic. This is a rapidly evolving situation and CDC’s risk assessment will be updated as needed.

Current risk assessment:

  • For most people, the immediate risk of being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 is thought to be low. This virus is not currently widespread in the United States.
  • People in places where ongoing community spread of the virus that causes COVID-19 has been reported are at elevated risk of exposure, with increase in risk dependent on the location.
  • Healthcare workers caring for patients with COVID-19 are at elevated risk of exposure.
  • Close contacts of persons with COVID-19 also are at elevated risk of exposure.
  • Travelers returning from affected international locations where community spread is occurring also are at elevated risk of exposure, with increase in risk dependent on the location.

 

Symptoms of common human coronaviruses:

  • runny nose
  • sore throat
  • headache
  • fever
  • cough
  • general feeling of being unwell

Human coronaviruses can sometimes cause lower-respiratory tract illnesses, such as pneumonia or bronchitis. This is more common in people with cardiopulmonary disease, people with weakened immune systems, infants, and older adults.

Preventing viral respiratory infections

Protect yourself from getting sick

  • wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands
  • avoid close contact with people who are sick

Protect others when you are sick

  • stay home while you are sick
  • avoid close contact with others
  • cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
  • clean and disinfect objects and surfaces

Treatment for common human coronaviruses

There is no vaccine to protect you against human coronaviruses and there are no specific treatments for illnesses caused by human coronaviruses. Most people with common human coronavirus illness will recover on their own. However, to relieve your symptoms you can:

  • take pain and fever medications (Caution: do not give aspirin to children)
  • use a room humidifier or take a hot shower to help ease
  • a sore throat and cough
  • drink plenty of liquids
  • stay home and rest

If you are concerned about your symptoms, contact your healthcare provider.

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THE SEEDS OF GREATNESS.

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If you can muster up the courage, energy, and persistence to plant the following seeds of greatness into your daily routines, you will be well on your way to becoming your greatness.

1 – Be Hungry For More

The first seed of greatness is that you must be hungry for more.  To truly tap into your greatness, you need to have some ambition.  At a minimum, you must be driven to be better than your former self.  If your greatness is the ever-expanding concept of your potential, you must have an internal urge to become your best.

As you change and grow as a person, your personal concept of greatness will change and grow as well.  And so long as you are hungry and driven to realize that better you, you place yourself on the path of greatness.

Be hungry to exceed your own expectations.

2 – Pay Attention

Your greatness is relevant to your imagination and your will to realize that ideal.

However; all too often we get so busy that we fail to recognize that we can become more.  We let life distract us.  And being distracted, stuck in the day-to-day monotony of making a living will stifle our ability to grow.

As such, a primary rule for unleashing our greatness is related to paying attention.  Essentially, we must become more aware, aware of ourselves, our trajectory, our lives, and our place in it.

And to become more aware, we must practice mindfulness.  So how does one practice mindfulness?  Well, mindfulness can be practiced by taking time each day to think about your life.   Some of the best ways to do this are the following:   mediation, long-walks, solitude, and going for a drive.  These are just a few ways that you can practice mindfulness, but it is by no means an exhaustive list.

3 – Strive Your Face Off

If you want to reach your greatness, you are going to have put in a lot of work.  You must plant the seed in your mind, that greatness requires effort.  Know, that your best self will not appear out of the blue just because you can imagine it.

Michael Jordan practiced 5 to 7 hours a day throughout his life.  He had to train and practice to show up as the person we’ve all come to admire.

Pablo Picasso painted 13,500 paintings, created at least 100,000 graphic prints and engravings,  produced 34,000 book illustrations, and  designed over 300 sculptures.

Prolific writer, Paulo Coelho has written 34 books since 1974, and wrote 4 books in one year alone.

Bringing your best self into the world will be no different.  It is going to take hours and hours of practice and tons of action and extra effort to make it happen.

Just like metal needs forging to be formed into a desired shape, so too will your greatness require concentrated effort to mold and make.

4 – Experiment

Habitual experimenting is a seed of greatness.  Some of the best inventions, recipes, and businesses have come to existence due to experimentation.

As you’ve probably already know, it took Thomas Edison over 1,000 experiments before he realized his vision of the working light bulb.

Henry Ford experimented with businesses and had 5 businesses fail before one took off.

Similarly, the delicious meals and drinks we get to enjoy at our favorite restaurants are the results of endless experimentation’s.

All in all, if we want to unleash our greatness, we must be willing to try new things, take different approaches, we must be willing to experiment.

5 – Quantity Vs. Quality

This rule is related to the last two, but it is different as it relates to not just taking action, but to ensuring that we are shipping or completing our creations.  It is necessary that you get your talents, ideas, and gifts out there to benefit the world.

To realize your greatness, you must get bits of it out into the world.  Not just for the sake of getting something out there, but in order that it may serve other people.

The more we can put out into the world, the better.  Sure, some of our ideas, creations, or whatever, may not be of the highest quality at first, but you can always improve quality over time.

The most important part is just getting your great stuff out there.  Because the quality of what you have to offer the world will improve as you provide it.  So start shipping your greatness today!

6 – Always Be Learning

A.B.LAlways Be Learning is the next seed of greatness.  One of the easiest ways to become more, is to learn more.  The more we learn, the larger our capacity for growth becomes.

Why you ask?  Well, recall my new and improved way of looking at greatness, which was “as a personalized reference point, limited only by the imagination and ambition of the person considering it.”  In doing so, notice the words “limited only by the imagination” of the person considering it.

When we learn more, our ability to comprehend and imagine what is possible grows, as such, continual learning is vital to reaching our greatness.

7 – Time Travel

The last seed of greatness, Time Travel.  If you time travel, you will position yourself to realize more of your greatness.  Of course, I am not talking about actual time travel here, (which would be cool) but rather, I am talking about mental time travel.

In other words, time travel as it relates to our ability to look forward into the future using our imagination.

To time travel in this sense, try to envision yourself as the greatest at what you have a passion for doing.  Try to envision the best version of yourself, or your ideal self.

When you do this, you’ll be stretching your mind and creating a void to be filled in by action. The action that is necessary for building the foundation that your future greatest self will soon rest upon.

Time travel in this sense can also help you make those big life altering decisions easier.  Jeff Bezos once mentioned a form of mental time travel he used to tap his greatness, but he called it a ‘regret minimization framework.’

In his example, he projected himself forward to the age of 80 and asked himself a series of questions at that point, on what he would or wouldn’t regret.  The answers that came to him are what propelled him to act on those ideas that were most aligned with his greatness.

And if you know anything about Jeff Bezos, you’ll know he made the right choice.  A choice that unleashed a multi-billion-dollar business empire.

So, if you want to fortify your capacity for greatness, close your eyes and take a leap into your imagined future.

Conclusion

To live one’s greatest life….to achieve one’s greatness, a lot of hard work will be involved, a lot of discipline as well.  Determination is going to be needed, you will without a doubt, need to tap new levels of courage.

Failure will happen, and you’ll have to show some serious resolve!   But, if you’ll simply start sowing your seeds of greatness, everything will change for you.

When you begin baking these 7 Seeds of Greatness into your pursuits, you will be poised to unleash your greatness, and with that, your amazing future.

Till next time…

STRIVE

 

P.S.

Which seed of greatness do you feel most resonates with you?

You Should Never Give Up On Your Dreams No Matter What!

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There comes a time in most entrepreneurs’ lives when the challenges seem overwhelming. You’ve suffered consecutive setbacks and sometimes, you seriously consider throwing in the towel.

You question yourself. Maybe you don’t have what it takes after all? Maybe your breakthrough idea just isn’t realistic? Maybe you should quit now, rather than continue to make a fool of yourself. Self-doubt leeches onto your heart and soul, and despair begins to take over.

It happens all the time, but I’m here to tell you why you should never ever give up on your dreams. Consider these six reasons:

1. What’s the alternative?

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If you give up now, what are your options? Where will you be in life? Adrift? Aimless? Imagine how that will make you feel. Perhaps there’s a particular product or service you’ve launched that is plainly not going to be “the one” that leads you to extreme success. Regard it as nothing more than a detour on your journey to success.

We all get sidetracked from time to time and, although you probably can’t identify a reason why right now, there’s probably a good reason Opportunity #1 didn’t work out. But, once Opportunity #10 or Opportunity #20 proves successful, you’ll realize why. Consider the billionaire author, J.K. Rowling, who created the “Harry Potter” series. Her idea was rejected 12 times before someone finally gave her a chance. Ultimately, perseverance paid.

2. Mistakes happen.

 

There’s not a straight line to success. You’re going to hit bumps in the road that will feel like mountains. But, you can get over them. In fact, making mistakes is necessary to creating a successful company. If you’re not making mistakes, you’re not experimenting. You’re not trying new approaches. You’re not going anywhere. They key thing is to make sure that you learn from the mistakes.

We’ve all heard stories about famous figures who have failed numerous times. Abraham Lincoln, for one, failed to win several positions before becoming president of the United States. Another example, Walt Disney, had to close businesses en route to worldwide success.

And, just last year, while most Americans were relaxing on Labor Day, 64-year-old Diana Nyad became the first person to swim the shark-invested waters between Cuba and Key West — some 110 miles —without a cage for protection. She succeeded after her fifth attempt in 35 years but says she learned something new from each of her failed efforts. Can you imagine what it takes to make that physical and mental journey? Failure is a necessary part of the journey, but it’s never the end until you decide to quit.

3. You need passion in your life.

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If you give up on your dreams, you’re living a life unfulfilled. I can’t imagine not being passionate about something. Do you really believe you can build a large company and help tens of thousands of people if you have a wishy-washy approach and don’t feel strongly about your personal endeavors? If you don’t have a mission — if you don’t have a purpose — are you wasting potential? Live life with purpose and you will never be bored. Absolute conviction is everything.

4. Anything can happen.

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Don’t give up today because the breakthrough you need might happen tomorrow. All of the hard work you invest in yourself will pay off in the long run. It may well be that you’re running in a marathon despite the fact that you were only expecting a short sprint. If you’re at the point of giving up, give it another shot. “Hail Mary’s” exist for this. And then, repeat this every day.

5. The joy of success.

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Most of all, don’t surrender your precious dreams, because one day, you will achieve them. And, when you do, the ecstasy will make all of the agony so worthwhile. Imagine being able to celebrate with your family and friends who have been rooting for you — think about the pleasure you will all feel.

Crossing the finishing line and realizing that you completed your goal will provide for an indescribable sense of accomplishment. So, go for it and don’t quit because you certainly don’t want to miss out on the experience of savoring the success.

6. Proving them wrong.

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Last, but not least, don’t give the naysayers the satisfaction of seeing you give up on your dreams! There’s nothing wrong with wanting to prove them wrong. It’s quite common to have dream-stealers infiltrate your life. It might be colleagues or business acquaintances or even (sadly) family and friends. They are negative influences who sow seeds of doubt.

I’ll never forget when I was trying to raise capital for my previous business, BlueLithium. There was a general partner of a big firm who lectured me for 10 minutes and said, “Your chances of success are pretty much zero.” Of course, that only invigorated my drive; I can’t help but wonder how he felt when I sold the company for $300 million a year later — I was delighted to prove him wrong. Cheers to those who doubted you because eventually, they will want to be part of your team.

Dreams are essential for an entrepreneur, and with determination, you will achieve them. The road is never an easy one, but it’s absolutely worth it. Your dreams are only awake if you are.