There’s this thing I’ve heard people say, either to me or generally, to the effect of: “The only one stopping you from achieving everything you put your mind to, is you.”
Has this ever been said to you? It has been said to me and I’ve had a myriad of responses to this statement, each reaction changing with hearing the statement anew.
My first response is to roll my eyes and think, “You really doh know nah”, while subsequently thinking of each obstacle stacked up in my path, deterring me from reaching my goal.
Oftentimes, those obstacles are related to extraneous attributes ranging from past or present circumstances, family, finances, or time. Other times, I tend to play the ‘blame game’, deferring responsibility from myself to anyone or anything else that it will stick to, claiming “How you expect me to…. When he/she doing this… etc.”
This is MY goal/dream/purpose/thing… not theirs.
Anger is my second response. I think, “Well, what you think I doing? Scratching? You don’t think I would if I could?”.
See, what I’ve realised is anger is oftentimes an outward projection of our inward emotions. I know I’m standing in my own way, but I don’t like the fact that you pointed it out to me.
Then, the typical ‘bad mind’ mentality kicks in; you know, the one where even though you know to yourself you were going to do something, the fact that someone else told you about it or called you out, makes you plant your feet firmly to the ground, unwilling to move or compromise, even to your detriment?
Yes. That’s the one.
If I’m being honest with myself, I do often stand in my way for two main reasons: Procrastination – Because the ‘thing’ I need to do seems so daunting, I prefer to put it off by telling myself “If I get all of these things out of the way then I can focus on that properly.” Then I keep finding more things to do, pushing that task further and further away. Fear – Fear, in my opinion, is one of the most detrimental forces to be experienced. In my case, fear exhibits itself in thoughts like: “What if I can’t do
that? What if I fail, this will be another thing I fail at? What will other people think? He/she would be offended if I did this.”
So, to myself and to you, I leave you with something a mentor of mine has said to me: “Just start it. Put it out there and see what happens. Either it works and it’s great, or maybe part of it does and another doesn’t, but then allow yourself to tweak and adjust and get back on track…so then either way, the effort isn’t wasted.”
And when all else fails, this is my little prayer that can maybe give you that extra push: “Lord, I have no idea what I’m doing here, but if this is something You want me to do, guide me along the way. I can’t do this without You.”