What’s holding you back?
When you say to yourself “I can’t”, is this true? I mean is it absolutely true that you can’t? Or are you telling yourself porkies? And … if you’re being dishonest with yourself, what is it that you’re avoiding saying?
Challenging questions? They’re meant to be.
The word can’t is a contraction of the word cannot. I bet if you replaced the word can’t with cannot, you might think twice about saying it. I hear a lot of people saying that they can’t do this or they can’t do that, when really they are choosing not to. It’s often an automatic response.
When we choose, whether it is to take action, or not to, we are empowering ourselves. And this gets us off autopilot. Can’t is word that we often use unconsciously when we are on auto-pilot. The list of things that we cannot humanly do is fairly small when you consider all of the things that are humanly possible, that is, when you are fully functional as most people are. All you have to do is take a look on You Tube at some of the amazing feats that people can achieve. There are some incredible exemplars of what is humanly possible – astronauts, mountaineers, free-divers and in our communities people such as our firemen and rescue workers who go to extraordinary lengths to keep us safe.
Now, I could say that I can’t climb mountains like Sir Edmund and that wouldn’t be true, because I know that I could, if my life depended on it. I could probably free-dive as well or run into a burning building. From where I sit, right now though, I choose not to. And that’s difference that makes a difference in how we think.
Whenever I hear myself saying the word can’t I hold myself in check and remember that I probably could if I wanted to. I love watching this clip from Nick Vujcich. There’s a bunch of things that he physically cannot do, yet, when I consider what he can do, I’m always inspired. When I hear myself ‘can’t-ing’ I often think of Nick and what he can do and then ask, what’s holding me back? Could I do it if my life depended on it? And if that answer is yes, then what’s going on?
What’s holding you back? What would happen if you stopped ‘can’t-ing’ yourself and starting choosing instead? I challenge you to have a go this week.