I am the master of my fate. I am the captain of my soul.
William Ernest Henley

Out of the night that covers me, Black as the pit from pole to pole.
I thank whatever gods may be  For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years Finds me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.

Invictus means "unconquerable" or "undefeated" in Latin. The poem was written while William Ernest Henley was in the hospital being treated for tuberculosis of the bone. Henley' foot had been amputated shortly before he wrote the poem. The piece is about courage in the face of adversity.

William Henley, editor of literary magazines and journals, had significant influence on culture and literary perspectives in the late Victorian period in England. His work remains popular today.

The Invictus Games, an international adaptive multi-sport event, is currently hosted by a number of countries across the globe. The Games embodies the fighting spirit of wounded, injured and sick service personnel, and what these tenacious men and women can achieve, post injury. The Games harness the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation, and generate a wider understanding and respect for those who serve their countries.

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, who saw how the power of sport could help the physically, psychologically and socially wounded, hosted the inaugural Invictus Games in London and contributes to other Invictus Games across the globe.

I am the master of my fate and the captain of my soul means that you decide what happens to you. Although you are a by product of your previous decisions and adopted concepts, you're currently in the driver's seat of your life.

I am the captain of my soul means that you have the power to choose your mood. You have power to control your emotions, and to attain your desired life. You have the power to become a happy person or choose to be a bitter person.

You have power to become a better employee by engaging in productive actions and choices. You have the power to bring out the best in co-workers and superiors, and contribute to making your company a great place to work. 

You are the architect who has the capacity to create your desired life career. Take responsibility for your own life career; don't blame others.

Being the captain of your soul requires knowing your purpose and pursuing career and life goals in harmony with your purpose.


Self mastery requires overcoming adversity. Although life has many challenges, we can’t control the cards that are dealt us, but we CAN control how we react to those events. Addressing challenges gives people strength, wisdom, patience, perseverance, empathy for others. Life’s greatest opportunities are often hidden in adversity.

Transforming life’s challenges into positive self-propellants requires self-mastery. “I am the master of my fate.  I am the captain of my soul.”

What can you do to make a difference in your own life career as well as the life careers of those who work with you? How can you become the master of your own fate? The captain of your soul?

Use the following examples for starters. Work with a partner to give each other support and feedback.

  • Restructure a dissatisfying job
  • Change to a more rewarding job
  • Help superiors meet company deadlines
  • Assist a co-worker strengthen a needed skill
  • Upgrade a required skill
  • Reduces job stress


Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, by Dr. Carole Kanchier, offers additional tips for mastering your life career and becoming captain of your soul: https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963
Carole Kanchier is available for consultations, coaching, and speaking engagements.
Contact: carole@questersdaretochange.com; carole@daretochange.com; www.questersdaretochange.com