Image by Foundry Co
The reason I share "what works for me" is that it may work for you as well. If not exactly the way I do it, since we are all unique, some variance of the attitude or method may very well be something that will work for you.
When I was a child, my mother used to say that my first words were "I can do it!". I'm not sure if this was true or if she was just pointing out a character trait, but regardless, it is something that I proudly claim... even though I don't always live up to it. After all, we all have fears and doubts that may come up to cloud our judgment and our vision of what is possible for us.
A few weeks ago, I decided to face one of my "I can't do it" limitations. You see, several years ago when we bought a tractor to use on our property, my husband taught me how to drive it because... well, "I could do it". And I did, I drove it and at one point I nearly drove into a tree. Well at least that's how I remember it. I was doing some work and somehow was unable to stop promptly as I headed directly into a tree. So that spooked me a bit, even if I didn't hit the tree, and after that, I wanted nothing to do with the tractor. Which was somewhat inconvenient, as I then had to depend on my husband to do anything that I wanted to do on the tractor. That did not sit well with my "I can do it" personality.
So a few weeks ago, I decided to face my demon (the fear demon) and asked to be taught again how to drive the tractor. After a refresher, I got back on the horse, so to speak. At first, I drove immensely slowly as my fear was palpable. Then as I got used to it, I gained more confidence and speed. I now drive the tractor without fear. I told you I could do it! You see I am also an old dog that can learn new tricks.
And What About You?
So what do you have in your life that you're holding back from doing because of some doubt or some fear - of failure perhaps. We can come up with tons of excuses as to why we can't do something. Some even make sense. But deep down we know the truth -- we are afraid of something. Whether it is a fear of ridicule, of failure, of getting hurt or hurting others, the type of fear is irrelevant. Fear is fear, and it is a limitation that we impose on ourselves and that stops us from moving forward and charting a new course.
One of my favorite books is "Illusions" by Richard Bach. It is a short volume that can open up a whole world of possibilities. In it, one of the characters says "Argue for your limitations and they are yours." And so often we do this. When? Anytime we say I'm too tired - or too sick. I don't have the education - or perhaps I have too much education to lower myself to that standard. I'm too young - or too old. I don't have the time.
Whatever the limitation, it is one that we have adopted as the gospel truth. However, is it? I would say probably not. We are unlimited beings. The cells in our body are reborn at least every seven years. We are constantly a new person. so whatever limitation we've accepted can be rerouted or disappeared at least in seven years time. We are basically reborn by then.
Get The Latest From InnerSelf
Our one restriction is the thought that "I can't do it" for whatever reason we give. Age, race, religion, education, health, location, finances or lack thereof, size, weight, gender, etc. etc. It's easy to find excuses. What can be harder is to grab our courage and take the risk to do the thing that we fear.
So I encourage you, whenever faced with a doubt about your talent or a fear about your capabilities, to tell yourself "I can do it". Of course, you may need to do some research or learn "how to". I'm not suggesting you climb into a plane and say I can do it and take off flying if you've never taken flying lessons. But you can learn and gain the needed skills to do whatever it is you dream of.
We need to remind ourselves that "if at first you don't succeed, try again"... and perhaps again and again. I firmly believe that if we have a dream or strong desire to do something, we can do it. It is meant for us to do. We would not have an inner yearning if it wasn't in our innate program for our dream-world.
“Are you in earnest? Seize this very minute:
What you can do, or dream you can, begin it;
Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.
Only engage and then the mind grows heated;
Begin and then the work will be completed.”
-- translation from "Faust"
by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Scripting the Life You Want: Manifest Your Dreams with Just Pen and Paper
by Royce Christyn
From small dreams to lifelong goals, this book gives you the tools to put your thoughts into action and finally close the gap between where you are and where you want to be in your life.
Info/Order this book. Also available as a Kindle edition and as an Audiobook.
About The Author
Marie T. Russell is the founder of InnerSelf Magazine (founded 1985). She also produced and hosted a weekly South Florida radio broadcast, Inner Power, from 1992-1995 which focused on themes such as self-esteem, personal growth, and well-being. Her articles focus on transformation and reconnecting with our own inner source of joy and creativity.
Creative Commons 3.0: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 License. Attribute the author: Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf.com. Link back to the article: This article originally appeared on InnerSelf.com