Ep25: Being Grateful In the Face of Adversity | with Humberto Gurmilan

The holidays are the time of year we’re all meant to slow down and recognize all the things in our lives that we are grateful for, but unfortunately with the crazy speed that life moves nowadays, the holiday season is most likely the most stressful time of the year. All most people (including myself) are often focused on is rushing to get projects done before the year ends, making travel plans, fighting the mad rush of holiday shoppers and traffic, and if there’s any spare time left in the day…maybe getting some sleep.

Where in the world is there any time to slow down and be grateful?

My guest today is Humberto Gurmilan, an Emmy award-winning producer, author, speaker, podcaster, and all-around inspiring guy. He is the founder of the Gurmilan Foundation which empowers individuals with disabilities in challenged communities, and until recently he was the sports anchor for Telemundo in San Diego where he also teaches communications at San Diego City College. But despite his many accomplishments, I didn’t invite Humberto on the show with me to discuss how he became successful.

In this interview Humberto and I talk about the tragedy he experienced as a teenager when due to a freak surfing accident he became paralyzed from the chest down. Rather than thinking about what was taken away from him, instead Humberto decided to rise to the challenge and instead develop gratitude in the face of adversity and use his experience to inspire others to do the same.

For those listening today who are frustrated with your present circumstances, I hope this interview allows you to reframe where you are in your life right now and take even a few minutes to be grateful for what you do have before embarking upon the madness of the holiday season.

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Here’s What You’ll Learn:

  • Humberto’s early life surfing in Tijuana
  • Processing a traumatic injury and the changes that come with becoming paralyzed
  • The healing love of family in the face of depression
  • The power of seeing yourself within your own comeback story
  • Transitioning your perspective from “Why me?” to “Why not me?”
  • Taking responsibility for your attitude towards the world
  • Humberto’s pursuit of sports broadcasting and discovering his gift for public speaking
  • Taking stock of the strengths you have so you can categorize your obstacles
  • Learning that you have way more talents than you think you do
  • The Three A’s: Attitude, Accountability, Action
  • Write down your goals. Once you do, you will be exponentially more likely to achieve that goal.

Useful Resources Mentioned:

Gurmilan Foundation

Overcome Podcast

Overcome TV series


Our Generous Sponsors:

This episode is made possible by Ergodriven, the makers of the Topo Mat, my #1 recommendation for anyone interested in moving more at their height-adjustable workstation. Listen, standing desks are only great if you’re standing well, otherwise you’re constantly fighting fatigue and chronic pain. Not like any other anti-fatigue mat, the Topo is scientifically proven to help you move more throughout the day which helps reduce discomfort and also increase your focus and productivity. And they’re really fun and a great conversation starter.

This episode is made possible by the HumanCharger,  a revolutionary new light therapy device made specifically for people who spend long days in the dark and don’t get enough sunlight…i.e. You and me. Simply put in the earbuds for 12 minutes a day to receive your daily recommended dosage of UV-free white light. Doing so can drastically increase your energy, improve your mood, and increase mental alertness and focus.This device has literally changed my life and I use it every morning without fail. Use the code ‘OPTIMIZE’ to get 20% off your order.

Guest Bio:


Humberto (“Beto”) is an Emmy award winning Journalist and Producer with 13 years of experience in the media. He hosts the Overcome Podcast and Overcome TV series on Youtube. His life mission is to help others by sharing his experiences in overcoming adversity and living a fulfilling life.

He founded the Gurmilan Foundation to help young people with disabilities become empowered and reach their full potential. He teaches broadcasting at San Diego City College and often speaks in the community to promote disability awareness and spread a positive message of hope and positivism.

Show Credits:

This episode was edited by Curtis Fritsch, and the show notes were prepared and published by Jakin Rintelman. Special thanks to Krystle Penhall and Sarah Furie for helping to spread the love!

The original music in the opening and closing of the show is courtesy of Joe Trapanese (who is quite possibly one of the most talented composers on the face of the planet).

Note: I believe in 100% transparency, so please note that I receive a small commission if you purchase products from some of the links on this page (at no additional cost to you). Your support is what helps keep this program alive. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Zack Arnold (ACE) is an award-winning Hollywood film editor (Cobra Kai, Empire, Burn Notice, Unsolved, Glee), a documentary director, father of 2, and the creator of the Optimize Yourself program. He helps ambitious creative professionals and entrepreneurs DO better and BE better. “Doing” better means learning how to more effectively manage your time, your energy, and your creativity so you can produce higher quality work in less time (and ultimately become a productivity ninja). “Being” better means doing all of the above while still prioritizing the most important people, things, and passions in your life…all without sacrificing your health (or sanity) in the process. Click to download Zack’s “Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Your Creativity (And Avoiding Burnout).”