I’m here to tell you that everything you’ve ever heard about your potential and how much you can accomplish is nothing but a happy little lie. Yep, everyone’s in on it. Everyone’s living the same strange fantasy. Well, here’s your wake-up call, potential is a false prophet.
“Potential just means you ain’t done it yet.” — Darrell Royal
Many of us spend our youth hearing about our potential or lack thereof. My opinion is that anyone who shares any sentiment involving potential is misguided. Potential is an illusory ability, untapped, so to speak. The problem with this so-called potential is it lacks tangible action. Why am I so stubbornly opposed to potential, you might ask? Because it’s a projection. It’s a fantasy that is never fully realized by anyone. It’s a race to a finish line that continues to move. For those that don’t “live up” to potential, it becomes anxiety. Others who are told they have no potential feel like they’re starting in a sandtrap.
“Don’t let the expectations and opinions of other people affect your decisions. It’s your life, not theirs. Do what matters most to you; do what makes you feel alive and happy. Don’t let the expectations and ideas of others limit who you are. If you let others tell you who you are, you are living their reality — not yours. There is more to life than pleasing people. There is much more to life than following others’ prescribed path. There is so much more to life than what you experience right now. You need to decide who you are for yourself. Become a whole being. Adventure.” ― Roy T. Bennett
Identify with Action
Don’t live with the label of potential; it’s not a rung on the ladder of success or a shovel to bury the worthless. Focus on action, focus on being the best you can be now. It’s easy to get caught up in illusions of grandeur, but tangible efforts create an opportunity for success.
“When it comes to how we fare in the marathon of life, effort counts tremendously.” ― Angela Duckworth
I’ve seen enough five-star high school athletes, child actors, and young geniuses to know that being labeled with potential means nothing in the big scheme of life. We’ve also seen Micheal Jordan cut from his high school basketball team and become a world champion, and Albert Einstein dropped out of school at 15 to become one of the most brilliant minds the world has ever seen. Labels meaning nothing; actions and efforts tell the story of who you are.
“Your actions reveal how badly you want something. If you keep saying something is a priority but you never act on it, then you don’t really want it. It’s time to have an honest conversation with yourself. Your actions reveal your true motivations.” ― James Clear
Beginning Starts Now
Tim Fargo said, “Who you are tomorrow begins with what you do today.” Make an effort to put a “W” on the calendar today in regards to being the person you want to be. Don’t waste your time thinking about this fantasyland of potential. Instead, make today about what you can tangibly do to show yourself what you’re truly capable of.
“Live your truth. Express your love. Share your enthusiasm. Take action towards your dreams. Walk your talk. Dance and sing to your music. Embrace your blessings. Make today worth remembering.” ― Steve Maraboli