If you want to talk about staying calm and having to keep things in perspective, it is hard to overlook the 33 rescued Chilean Miners. Stranded since August 5, they endured 69 days of being trapped over 2,000 feet below the surface in a collapsed mine.
I understand that all 33 Chilean miners will be evaluated - both physically and mentally - and some underlying problems may arise. But the fact that all were in relatively good health is remarkable. To survive the ordeal, several characteristics come to mind - characteristics that everyone needs in life to succeed.
The first is hope. Imagine sitting in your basement for 69 days without being able to see sunlight. The hope that the Chilean miners had - hope in themselves, in each other, in the rescuers - is unbelievable.
In sports, the need for mental toughness is often discussed. I would challenge anyone to tell me that what those Chilean miners are not some of the most mentally tough people in the world. Initially, the first reports said that it may be until Christmas time that they would be rescued. To have to prepare to spend five months trapped almost a half a mile below the surface is tremendous.
The final words are faith and belief. It is one thing to hope to be saved and another to prepare. But to have faith that those above the ground will do everything they can to free you, no matter what conditions are faced and at what length is awesome.
I obviously have no idea what the mental state of each miner may be. But I am certain the camaraderie that the Chilean miners have developed - along with the hope, faith, belief and toughness - will last a lifetime.
What do you think? Are there any other words that come to mind?