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Life Without Limits: Inspiration for a Ridiculously Good Life

Life Without Limits: Inspiration for a Ridiculously Good Life

4.3 103
by Nick Vujicic

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What Would Your Life be Like if Anything Were Possible?
Born without arms or legs, Nick Vujicic overcame his disabilities to live an independent, rich, fulfilling, and “ridiculously good” life while serving as a role model for anyone seeking true happiness. Now an internationally successful motivational speaker, Nick eagerly spreads


What Would Your Life be Like if Anything Were Possible?
Born without arms or legs, Nick Vujicic overcame his disabilities to live an independent, rich, fulfilling, and “ridiculously good” life while serving as a role model for anyone seeking true happiness. Now an internationally successful motivational speaker, Nick eagerly spreads his central message: the most important goal is to find your life’s purpose and to never give up, despite whatever difficulties or seemingly impossible odds stand in your way.

Nick tells the story of his physical disabilities and the emotional battle he endured while learning to deal with them as a child, teen, and young adult. “For the longest, loneliest time, I wondered if there was anyone on earth like me, and whether there was any purpose to my life other than pain and humiliation.” Nick shares how his faith in God has been his major source of strength, and he explains that once he found a sense of purpose—inspiring others to better their lives and the world around them—he found the confidence to build a rewarding and productive life without limits. Let Nick inspire you to start living your own life without limits.
Includes a Life Without Limits Personal Action Plan to help anyone determine their unique path to a successful life.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Vujicic (director, Life Without Limbs) was born without arms and legs but with the gifts of determination, good humor, and optimism. Through a strong faith in God, a belief in himself, and a supportive network of family and friends, he not only found passion and purpose in his own life but discovered he could inspire others to find the same zest for life no matter what their personal struggles. Vujicic himself reads; his infectious joy and love of life come through so powerfully in his narration that listeners will actually be able to hear the smile in his voice. After listening to Vujicic's incredible story, audiences will definitely want to check out this amazing man in action on YouTube or his website, www.lifewithoutlimbs.org. ["An inspiring narrative particularly appropriate for teens or others facing difficulties and low self-esteem," read the review of the Doubleday hc, LJ 11/15/10.—Ed.]—Theresa Horn, St. Joseph Cty. P.L., South Bend, IN

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The Crown Publishing Group
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5.20(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.75(d)

Read an Excerpt


If You Can’t Get a Miracle, Become One

O ne of my most popular videos on YouTube shows footage of me skateboarding, surfing, playing music, hitting a golf ball, falling down, getting up, speaking to audiences, and best of all, receiving hugs from all sorts of great people.

All in all, those are pretty ordinary activities that just about anybody can do, right? So why do you think that video has been viewed millions of times? My theory is that people are drawn to watch it because despite my physical limitations, I’m living as though I have no limits.

People often expect someone with a severe disability to be inactive, maybe even angry and withdrawn. I like to surprise them by showing that I lead a very adventurous and fulfilling existence.

Among the hundreds of comments on that video, here’s one typical remark: “Seeing a guy like this being happy makes me wonder why the hell I feel sorry for myself sometimes . . . or feel that I’m not attractive enough, or funny enough, or WHATEVER. How can I even think thoughts like that when this guy is living without limbs and still being HAPPY!?”

I’m often asked that very question: “Nick, how can you be so happy?” You may be dealing with your own challenges, so I’ll give you the quick answer up front:

I found happiness when I realized that as imperfect as I may be, I am the perfect Nick Vujicic. I am God’s creation, designed according to His plan for me. That’s not to say that there isn’t room for improvement. I’m always trying to be better so I can better serve Him and the world!

I do believe my life has no limits. I want you to feel the same way about your life, no matter what your challenges may be. As we begin our journey together, please take a moment to think about any limitations you’ve placed on your life or that you’ve allowed others to place on it. Now think about what it would be like to be free of those limitations. What would your life be if anything were possible?

I’m officially disabled, but I’m truly enabled because of my lack of limbs. My unique challenges have opened up unique opportunities to reach so many in need. Just imagine what is possible for you!

Too often we tell ourselves we aren’t smart enough or attractive enough or talented enough to pursue our dreams. We buy into what others say about us, or we put restrictions on ourselves. What’s worse is that when you consider yourself unworthy, you are putting limits on how God can work through you!

When you give up on your dreams, you put God in a box. After all, you are His creation. He made you for a purpose. Therefore your life cannot be limited any more than God’s love can be contained.

I have a choice. You have a choice. We can choose to dwell on disappointments and shortcomings. We can choose to be bitter, angry, or sad. Or when faced with hard times and hurtful people, we can choose to learn from the experience and move forward, taking responsibility for our own happiness.

As God’s child, you are beautiful and precious, worth more than all the diamonds in the world. You and I are perfectly suited to be who we were meant to be! Even still, it should always be our goal to become an even better person and stretch our boundaries by dreaming big. Adjustments are necessary along the way because life isn’t always rosy, but it is always worth living. I’m here to tell you that no matter what your circumstances may be, as long as you are breathing, you have a contribution to make.

I can’t put a hand on your shoulder to reassure you, but I can speak from the heart. However desperate your life may seem, there is hope. As bad as circumstances appear, there are better days ahead. No matter how dire your circumstances may appear, you can rise above them. To wish for change will change nothing. To make the decision to take action right now will change everything!

All events come together for the good. I’m certain of that because it’s been true in my life. What good is a life without limbs? Just by looking at me, people know that I faced and overcame many obstacles and hardships. That makes them willing to listen to me as a source of inspiration. They allow me to share my faith, to tell them they are loved, and to give them hope.

That is my contribution. It’s important to recognize your own value. Know that you also have something to contribute. If you feel frustrated right now, that’s okay. Your sense of frustration means you want more for your life than you have right now. That’s all good. Often it’s the challenges in life that show us who we are truly meant to be.

A Life of Value

It took me a long time to see the benefits of the circumstances I was born into. My mum was twenty-five years old when she became pregnant with me, her first child. She’d been a midwife and worked as a pediatric nurse in charge in the delivery room where she provided care for hundreds of mothers and their babies. She knew what she had to do while she was pregnant, watching her diet, being cautious about medications, and not consuming alcohol, aspirin, or any other pain-killers. She went to the best doctors and they assured her everything was proceeding smoothly.

Even still, her apprehension persisted. As her due date approached, my mum shared her concerns with my father several times, saying, “I hope that everything’s okay with the baby.”

When two ultrasounds were performed during her pregnancy, the doctors detected nothing unusual. They told my parents that the baby was a boy but not a word about missing limbs! At my delivery on December 4, 1982, my mother could not see me at first, and the first question she asked the doctor was “Is the baby all right?” There was silence. As the seconds ticked by and they were still not bringing the baby for her to see, she sensed even more that something was wrong. Instead of giving me to my mother to hold, they summoned a pediatrician and moved off to the opposite corner, examining me and conferring with each other. When my mum heard a big healthy baby scream, she was relieved. But my dad, who had noticed I was missing an arm during the delivery, felt queasy and was escorted out of the room.

Shocked at the sight of me, the nurses and doctors quickly wrapped me up.

My mother, who’d participated in hundreds of deliveries as a nurse, wasn’t fooled. She read the distress on the faces of her medical team, and she knew something was very wrong.

“What is it? What’s wrong with my baby?” she demanded.

Her doctor would not answer at first, but when she insisted on a response, he could offer my mother only a specialized medical term.

“Phocamelia,” he said.

Because of her nursing background, my mother recognized the term as the condition babies have when they are born with malformed or missing limbs. She simply couldn’t accept that this was true.

In the meantime, my stunned dad was outside, wondering whether he had seen what he thought he saw. When the pediatrician came out to speak to him, he cried out, “My son, he has no arm!”

“Actually,” the pediatrician said as sensitively as possible, “your son has neither arms nor legs.”

My father went weak with shock and anguish.

He sat stunned, momentarily unable to speak before his protective instincts kicked in. He rushed in to tell my mother before she saw me, but to his dismay he found her lying in bed, crying. The staff had already told her the news. They had offered to bring me to her but she refused to hold me and told them to take me away.

The nurses were crying. The midwife was crying. And of course, I was crying! Finally they put me next to her, still covered, and my mum just couldn’t bear what she was seeing: her child without limbs.

“Take him away,” she said. “I don’t want to touch him or see him.”

To this day my father regrets that the medical staff did not give him time to prepare my mother properly. Later, as she slept, he visited me in the nursery. He came back and told Mum, “He looks beautiful.” He asked her if she wanted to see me at that point, but she declined, still too shaken. He understood and respected her feelings.

Instead of celebrating my birth, my parents and their whole church mourned. “If God is a God of love,” they wondered, “why would He let something like this happen?”

My Mum’s Grief

I was my parents’ firstborn child. While this would be a major cause for rejoicing in any family, no one sent flowers to my mum when I was born. This hurt her and only deepened her despair.

Sad and teary-eyed, she asked my dad, “Don’t I deserve flowers?”

“I’m sorry,” Dad said. “Of course you deserve them.” He went to the hospital flower shop and returned shortly to present her with a bouquet.

I was aware of none of this until the age of thirteen or so, when I began to question my parents about my birth and their initial reaction to my lack of limbs. I’d had a bad day at school, and when I told my mum, she cried with me. I told her I was sick of having no arms and legs. She shared my tears and said that she and my dad had come to understand that God had a plan for me and one day He would reveal it. My questions continued over time, sometimes with one parent, sometimes with both. Part of my search for answers was natural curiosity and part of it was in response to the persistent questions I’d been fielding from curious classmates.

At first, I was a little scared of what my parents might tell me, and, since some of this was difficult for them to delve into, I didn’t want to put them on the spot. In our initial discussions my mum and dad were very careful and protective in their responses. As I grew older and pushed harder, they offered me deeper insights into their feelings and their fears because they knew I could handle it. Even so, when my mum told me that she didn’t want to hold me after I was born, it was hard to take, to say the least. I was insecure enough as it was, but to hear that my own mother could not bear to look at me was . . . well, imagine how you might feel. I was hurt and I felt rejected, but then I thought of all that my parents have done for me since. They’d proven their love many times over. By the time we had these conversations, I was old enough to put myself in her situation. Other than her intuitive feelings, there’d been no warning of this during her pregnancy. She was in shock and frightened. How would I have responded as a parent? I’m not sure I would have handled it as well as they did. I told them that, and over time we went more and more into the details.

I’m glad that we waited until I was secure, knowing deep in my heart of hearts that they loved me. We’ve continued to share our own feelings and fears, and my parents have helped me understand how their faith enabled them to see that I was destined to serve God’s purpose. I was a fiercely determined and mostly upbeat child. My teachers, other parents, and strangers often told my parents that my attitude inspired them. For my part, I came to see that as great as my challenges were, many people had heavier burdens than mine.

Today in my travels around the world, I often see incredible suffering that makes me grateful for what I have and less inclined to focus on what I may lack. I have seen orphaned children with crippling diseases. Young women forced into sexual slavery. Men imprisoned because they were too poor to pay a debt.

Suffering is universal and often unbelievably cruel, but even in the worst of slums and after the most horrible tragedies, I have been heartened to see people not only surviving but thriving. Joy was certainly not what I expected to find in a place called “Garbage City,” the worst slum at the edge of Cairo, Egypt. The Manshiet Nasser neighborhood is tucked into towering rock cliffs. The unfortunate but accurate nickname and the community’s rank odor come from the fact that most of its fifty thousand residents sustain themselves by combing through Cairo, dragging its garbage there, and picking through it. Each day they sort through mountains of refuse pulled from a city of eighteen million residents, hoping to find objects to sell, recycle, or somehow make use of.

Amid streets lined with garbage piles, pig pens, and stinking trash, you would expect people to be overcome with despair, yet I found it to be quite the opposite on a visit in 2009. The people there live hard lives, to be sure, but those I met were very caring, seemingly happy, and filled with faith. Egypt is 90 percent Muslim. Garbage City is the only predominantly Christian neighborhood. Nearly 98 percent of the people are Coptic Christians.

I’ve been to many of the poorest slums in all corners of the world. This was one of the worst as far as the environment, but it was also one of the most heart-warming in spirit. We squeezed nearly 150 people into a very small concrete building that served as their church. As I began speaking, I was struck by the joy and happiness radiating from my audience. They were simply beaming at me. My life has rarely seemed so blessed. I gave thanks that their faith lifted them above their circumstances as I told them how Jesus had changed my life too.

I spoke with church leaders there about how lives in the village had changed through the power of God. Their hope wasn’t put on this earth, but their hope is in eternity. In the meantime they’ll believe in miracles and thank God for who He is and what He has done. Before we left, we presented some families with rice, tea, and a small amount of cash that would buy them enough food for several weeks. We also distributed sports equipment, soccer balls, and jump ropes to the children. They immediately invited our group to play with them, and we had a ball, laughing and enjoying each other even though we were surrounded by squalor. I will never forget those children and their smiles. It just proved to me again that happiness can come to us under any circumstance if we put our total trust in God.

How can such impoverished children laugh? How can prisoners sing with joy? They rise above by accepting that certain events are beyond their control and beyond their understanding too, and then focusing instead on what they can understand and control. My parents did just that. They moved forward by deciding to trust in God’s Word that “all things work for the good of those who love God, who are called according to His purpose.”


Meet the Author

Nick Vujicic is a motivational speaker and the director of the nonprofit organization Life Without Limbs. A long-time resident of Australia, Nick now lives with his wife in southern California.

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Life Without Limits 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 102 reviews.
Evelyn55 More than 1 year ago
Nick puts the H in the word HOPE! If he is able to overcome his challenges and be a beacon of light to the rest of the world, what of us? He makes you sit up and take a deep look at what is really important to worry about and what to focus on in your own life. Grab what you can and be glad you have God on yourside to help you hold on. Life is a ride worth riding. Giving up isn't an option because that is a cop-out. This is a fast read that everybody will enjoy sharing.
TallmanSWM More than 1 year ago
Great book ... it puts things in the right perspective...
SheilaDeeth More than 1 year ago
Ridiculously inspiring and fun! Inspirational, gently Christian but equally available to believers and non-believers alike, this book is surely as intriguing as the author/motivational speaker must be in person. Nick Vujicic’s Life without Limits offers encouragement to readers who twist against the goads of a limited life, from the viewpoint of one whose life is lived without either limits or limbs. The cover picture, of a handsome happy young man, smiling, staring straight at the reader, certainly pulls you in. And it’s only after you’ve been pulled in that you realize what’s “wrong,” or what's missing (arms and legs). But by then you’re already turning the page and you’re hooked. Nick Vujicic must surely have lived the ultimate in limited lives, carried from place to place, dressed by others, fed by others, trundled around like a doll… but he learned not only to be independent, but also how and when to choose dependence instead. In Life without Limits he offers examples from his own life and from people he’s spoken with to show how readers can choose to change their point of view, and practice unlimited life. “When you give up on your dreams, you put God in a box,” says Nick in his introduction. But this isn’t a book about God. It’s not a book about blandly accepting the inevitable as just “Well, it must be God’s will.” It’s a book about changing the inevitable. If you’re a believer, it’s a book that will draw you closer to God, proving again and again that in a broken world or broken body, God has a plan for you. Even if you’re not a believer, Nick’s words might entice you with hope. But more than that, his actions and his lessons will propel you forward as surely as his “chicken drumstick” foot propels his truncated body in a swimming pool. A lovely sense of humor pervades this book, almost inviting you to look more closely at the pictures—yes, it invited me; I searched for Nick on Youtube and Facebook too as soon as I finished reading! But there’s also a valuable serious side to the writing. Nick says, with absolute honesty, there are others in the world with far more problems than he. Then he proves it’s true. He says, with absolute honesty, that we can change our lives, then he proves that too. He confesses to his teenage depression and hopelessness,and proves there really was a way through. Do you need to change your attitudes? Do you need to set new goals? Do you need more people skills (and just imagine how important such skills must be to someone without arms to defend himself or legs to flee!)? Do you want some practical steps to overcoming your limits? This book has it all in an easy-to-read package, with repetition where it’s needed, a convincing feel of listening to a great speaker, a genuine call to motivate you, and an honest humanity and faith… plus pictures, plus stories, plus laugh-out-loud ridiculous zany fun! Yes, Nick Vujicic really does live and love his life without limits and he’s somebody well worth meeting! Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review, and I count myself ridiculously lucky!
DeeNY2013 More than 1 year ago
I am still in the process of reading the book, but so far I love it. It is so inspirational and when I am reading it I can't put it down.
kkineman More than 1 year ago
this book really help me realize what all I could do with 4 limbs!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After seeing videos on Youtube of Nick Vujicic, I was amazed and inspired by his hope to overcome has challenges. I was lucky enough earlier this year to actually meet and talk to Nick in person at my cousin's wedding. I never would have expected to meet such an inspirational man, and be lucky enough to now call him part of my family. I decided to pick up his book Life Without Limits because I was inspired by his faith and positive outlooks on life. His book applies to either gender at any age which I think makes the book easy to read. In his book he speaks out appreciating the gifts we receive from God and embracing what we have instead of what we do not have. His inspiring words throughout his novel gives motivation and hope to his readers. He also tells about his childhood and dealing with adversity not having limbs and how the kids at school would treat him. Bullying is one of his major points in this book, which really makes this book phenomenal. He talks about how he dealt with his problems growing up by following God and changing his life around to become the famous Nick Vujicic we all hear about today. I would really recommend this book to anyone out there who appreciates a heart warming, inspirational, and motivational story, this book is worth reading!
Dreaming_Lion More than 1 year ago
Life Without Limits by Nick Vujicic presents inspiration to tap into and desire to fulfill true and destined potential with every page. The author empathizes with the reader using personal stories from his own life. Some stories include facing personal difficulties in his life placed in front of him. Vujicic openly shares what he learned over the years from role models and heroes who mostly struggle from disabilities that more obviously separate them others. Challenges, trials and adversity of every kind seem less daunting after reading. The author kindles hope and faith in the hearts of those who sincerely inquire for an uplifting message. What truly amazes the reader are the achievements the author humbly showcases. Vujicic learned how to surf, dive, get himself back up without help, motivate thousands across the world, and so much more. Life Without Limits is thought-provoking, comical, and spiritual. The honest seeker of truth will not escape self-reflection at some point or another, if not during every chapter. This masterpiece brings even the hardest personalities to tears of joy. Shame and guilt no longer distract readers as much as long as they remember what Vujicic teaches and preaches. If you thrill from thickening plots, or delight in constant extraordinary use of vocabulary, this particular work may not suit you. Some copies of Life Without Limits include a “Personal Action Plan.” The “Personal Action Plan” intends for the reader or seeker of truth to “have the ‘map’ that will take you to your own ridiculously good life without limits.” Life Without Limits, just like the author, empowers individuals and blesses lives.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
LaurenYarger More than 1 year ago
"Life Without Limits: Inspiration for a Ridiculously Good Life" (WaterBrook Press, 2012) by Nick Vujicic is an inspirational read that is both memoir and self help book.  Born without arms or legs, Nick reflects on his own life lessons to encourage readers to embrace challenges faced in life and to view them as opportunities rather than limits. While Nick repeatedly references his faith in Christ as a backbone for his outlook on life, his advice references not only the Bible (note: no actual verse references used) but many other well known secular figures as well.  The book is very conversational, and at times it feels like Nick is actually sitting next to you. I was surprised by his ability to find humor in his circumstances, and to use it as an effective teaching tool. I laughed out loud as he explained the value in learning that is OK to ask for help while detailing a series of unfortunate (but hilarious) events that occurred while relying on a caretaker during a speaking tour in Transylvania.  Life lessons are carefully interwoven with these humorous, and at times, brutally honest anecdotes. Nick details his own struggle with self acceptance, including a suicide attempt as a teenager. What's truly dynamic about this book is that while its purpose is to encourage and uplift, Nick doesn't shy away about touching on the pain and anguish he's endured. He's real about his emotions and experiences in a universally relatable way, making his message of hope to rise beyond one's circumstances much more powerful because it is being told by someone who has done it.  Other books from the author (also published by WaterBrook Press) are: Unstoppable: The Incredible Power of Faith in Action (2012) Limitless: Devotions for a Ridiculously Good Life (2013) Your Life Without Limits: Living Above Your Circumstances (2011) A free copy of the book was provided by the publisher.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have seen this gentleman speak twice at my church and he is amazing.
KathyRkr More than 1 year ago
Very Encouraging - He is such an inspiration
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so inspiring. I'm a triple amputee and got to meet him couple years ago. I went through a rough period as well, and this book reminded me that I'm not alone, and could have it worse. I also just heard that his wife is currently in labor, so congrats to him! I have a feeling he's going to make a great father. God bless you Nick, and good luck with everything!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A very inspirational person with so much drive. At times you read about all that he has done and you wonder if he shouldn't have named the book, "So what is your excuse?"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
onedesertrose More than 1 year ago
My Review: I’ve seen him via Youtube on Facebook, but when his book became available, I had to read it! What a powerhouse of a book! Nick Vujicic (Voy-a-chich) shares with us his many years of experience (27 years) and wisdom as he worked through his childhood, teens and early adulthood without arms and legs. For such a young man, he has much to teach us through his trials and his reliance on the Lord. Some of the attributes he knew he needed include: A powerful sense of purpose Hope so strong that it cannot be diminished Faith in God and the infinite possibilities Love and self-acceptance Attitude with altitude A courageous spirit Willingness to change A trusting heart Hunger for opportunities The ability to assess risks and to laugh at life A mission to serve others first That’s one tall order, and, no, he didn’t always succeed instantly in each situation, but with the grace of God and loving, Christian parents and family, he continued on. Nick’s book, Life Without Limits, will encourage you to overcome the obstacles in your own life and come out on top. He’s convinced “that for every disability you have, you are blessed with more than enough ability to overcome your challenges.” The chapter titles give great insight into who the man is and how he is accomplishing his attributes: If you can’t get a miracle, become one No arms, no legs, no limits Full assurance in the heart Love the perfectly imperfect you Attitude is altitude Armless but not harmless Don’t let your face plant grow roots The new bloke in the bushes Trust others, more or less An equal opportunity hugger The ridiculous rules Make giving your mission Nick’s book is realistic about his personal endeavors, yet punchy enough to jump-start you out of the doldrums. Yes, he suffered with depression, but he also enlightens you with how to overcome. Many obstacles stood in his way, but God’s extraordinary gift of determination helped him cope with the monumental tasks. His sense of humor and charismatic personality draw you to him, but it’s his encouragement and sincerity that shows you that he’s just like you in wanting to be loved and accepted. It’s why he’s so able to empathize with those who live with all sorts of pains. He has his Ridiculous Rules for Managing Risk, but it’s his ridiculous fun that will have you rolling on the floor in laughter. The stunts he and his relatives and friends pull are hilarious! His laughter doesn’t hide his pain, but it encourages him through it. Nick’s bonus “personal action plan” section at the back of the book will assist you in claiming those attributes he works so hard on each day. Life is not fair, but this section helps you through the rough spots. His faith in God is his major source of strength and the One who inspires his mission. Hopefully He will be yours as well. If you struggle with anything in your life, read Nick’s book for insights and actions to change your life into a “ridiculously good” life! You’ll fall in love with his Australian language as well, mate! Special thanks to Ashley Boyer, Senior Publicist at Random House for sending me a review copy in exchanged for my honest review. No monetary compensation was exchanged.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The life of Nick is awonderful example of a life without limits for sure!! Great book for teens to read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago