With March Madness capturing so much attention, the Just Porter staff came across Brandon Todd. He looks like your average basketball player, except he stands 5-foot-5, roughly half the height of a standard basketball rim. As chronicled in the amazing documentary short, Five/Five, Todd made it his personal mission to dunk a basketball.
Now before you read on, imagine having to jump straight upward about four feet. That’s higher than trying to jump from the floor to the top of your desk in one swift motion.
In the film, Todd stresses he had no role models for basketball players at his height. Instead of giving in to his physical limitation and using it as an excuse, Todd longed to prove that dunking a basketball could be a truly exceptional achievement.
Todd devoted himself to a workout regime inspired by Russian power lifters and finally accomplished his goal after months of attempts. Todd set the precedent that even the most improbable of goals are attainable if they are given the proper dedication. Todd proved that anybody, despite their limitations, can accomplish exceptional feats.
So, what is the simple formula for changing the world? Here are three underlying themes to take from Todd’s hard work:
1. Be dedicated
2. Be exceptional
3. Be inspiring
These three ideas are what make Todd’s journey of trying to dunk a basketball capable of changing the world. He is not exceptional simply because he dunked a basketball, but his story is incredible because of his dedication towards an exceptional goal while wanting to inspire others.
Todd’s motivation came from every negative comment thrust toward him because of his size, which was a limitation that some people find insurmountable. And Todd did what many people never actually do: turn criticism into action and let it inspire and empower others. It’s something everybody can do, and it starts with something simple: the belief that you can be exceptional and inspiring regardless of your situation.
Everybody faces challenges through life and people like Todd show how powerful it is when adversity meets action. When individuals and businesses decide to be exceptional, there’s no saying what goals can be achieved.
At Just Porter, we were told that focusing a business around helping others – instead of focusing solely on profiting – would fail. We were told to sell our feel good story rather than focus on quality backpacks. Through the adversity we face, we continue to show that there are no unconquerable limitations. We can change the world and we want to inspire others to do the same. Our goal has always been to be exceptional and we will always stand by that.
Individuals and businesses can take action to change the world. If Todd could overcome glaring obstacles to accomplish his goal, changing the world might not be as hard as it seems. Be dedicated. Be exceptional. Be inspiring.