When I was growing up there was one phrase that could inspire me and piss me off all at the same time. My parents always said, “You have so much potential.” I innately knew that I did, and the statement would serve as a reminder that I wasn’t meeting that potential, or that I fell short. It didn’t help that I usually heard the phrase after I did something really dumb. (I heard it a lot!)
We’ve all heard this or felt it. “I know I’m capable of more!” We all have a seed or a little fiery ember inside that lets us know what we are capable of. Lissa Rankin calls this our inner pilot light. The whole concept of Narrowing The Gap starts with that one question, “What are you capable of?”
I’ve really tried to come up with a more sexy way to say that. Such as, “What is your life’s purpose?” Or, “What’s your true calling?” Really, it’s more simple than that.
Just ask yourself the question, “What am I capable of?”
Now listen for the answer. What do you feel? Does it scare you, excite you, or make you feel a bit ashamed?
If the answer is yes to any of these, then GOOD!
Whether you’ve defined it or not, you’ve thought it. Whenever you compare yourself to someone, you’re asking it. You’re thinking, “I could do that,” or, “I could never do that.” When you feel inspired by something or someone it’s a hint to your potential. Look to your mentors and those you admire, in these people you see your own capabilities. The part of you that resonates with their message or talent is also part of your own capable being.
Sometimes in the quiet of the night we have a dull ache and know we can achieve greatness then the sun comes up and our fears wake up. There are usually two forces at work as we evaluate our capabilities. A deep knowing that we’re capable of miracles and a fear that we’re a useless fraud and everyone sees it.
John Lennon best expresses it when said, “Part of me suspects that I am a loser, and the other part of me thinks I’m God Almighty.” When I heard that quote I was like, “Yes! that’s exactly how I feel.” Minus the bit of blasphemy, but God did create me so why wouldn’t he give me (and you) the ability to be great?
I learned as a first grade flunky, that if we put ourselves to the test, we’ll find a vast collection of divine resources at our disposal. These aren’t free, we have to look for them, mine them out, and sometimes even find ways to unlock them.
That’s why I’m writing this. To help you remember what you’re capable of and to help you Narrow The Gap between the life you’re living now, and what Stephen Pressfield calls your un-lived life within.
What else is there to do besides strive to reach the potential you were given? Everything else is really just Mickey Mouse…no offense Walt!