What was the first thought that went through your head after reading the title of this blog? What do you initially think about this blog post? Do you think I will be completing it? Leaving it unfinished? It is very interesting how powerful our words are. If the blog was titled, “I am going to write this blog”, do your perceptions and assumptions now change, because of the removal of one single word? We are our own biggest encouragers and we are our own biggest discouragers. Many people support us, and put us down. And they do so with words. How many times have you been discouraged from doing something because of what people said to you? (These are not rhetorical questions by the way people, lol.. I EXPECT you to answer them by leaving comments!). I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it was not the person’s fault for you being discouraged. I’ll say it again, we are our OWN biggest encouragers and our OWN biggest discouragers. Many people tell us a lot of things. But we don’t truly believe them until we tell it to ourselves.
Everytime I stop to rest, every person that passes me feels it is necessary to tell me how hot it is outside. I guess it’s an ice breaker or easy small talk. I reply with “It’s perfect” and a big smile. The only reason it is not hot for me, is because I don’t tell myself it is hot. It is that simple. If you say it to yourself, you will believe it. And what you believe will become your reality.
A few months back, I was contacted by Todd, founder of a health organization called Columbus Fit Clique. He expressed his passion for bringing a healthier lifestyle to, first Columbus, but eventually the nation. I was originally scheduled to go to Detroit, but with little outspoken interest from community leaders, I rerouted my journey to go through the Buckeye State, to collaborate with Columbus Fit Clique. I quickly became very close with everyone within the organization and was soon invited over to stay with Greg’s, Todd’s business partner, best friend’s mom’s house (did you follow that?). His best friend is Mike and we also hit it off immediately, after a brief discussion about ambition. This guy can do it all. He was a great athlete throughout high school and he also an incredibly gifted artist. We were playing catch with the football the other day, and he was catching the ball left and right, one-handed, behind his back and you could not even hear the ball hitting his hands. It would have been a spectacle for anyone to watch. He’s an amazing guy. He succeeds in anything he does.
Fast forward to a discussion we were having about his art career. He told me about a final project he had to do for an art class. He informed his professor that he was going to do a portrait for his last efforts of the semester. The professor looked at him, laughed and told him it he can’t do portraits. Mike was very confident in his skills and replied, “Yes, I will”. He then created a masterpiece, which blew his professor away, as well as myself.
Mike then told me about his basketball career. He had the opportunity to play for a professional team over seas. But when he was telling me the story, I noticed a shift in his mental approach. Throughout the duration of the narrative, he used the word “try” countless times. He said he was going to try to make the team. And this is the only time I’ve heard him use this word. In the end, he was not successful in pursuing a professional career in basketball and was cut from the team.
If you’ve read my previous blogs (uhummm, cough, cough, nudge.. Amy and Brittany), you can recall a blog entitled, “Failure”. I mentioned that the words “can’t” and “try” are not in my vocabulary. For obvious reason “can’t” is not a positive word to use, but “try” is all too often overlooked. When you say you are going to “try” something, it implies failure, incompletion and not giving it your full attention and efforts, just like when you read the title of this blog.
What if Mike had TRIED to do a portrait for his final project? What if Mike DECIDED to make the basketball team? When you want to succeed, either decide to do it, or decide not to do it, don’t try to do it.. you will not succeed. How far do you think I would have bicycled, if I was going to TRY to bicycle 11,000 miles around the nation. Instead, I WILL bicycle 11,000 miles around the nation, therefore leaving myself one end result, SUCCESS. Words are powerful and they will shape your future. What you say, is what you believe. And what you believe, will become your reality. Encourage yourself today, and DECIDE to be successful!