What great thing would you attempt if you knew you could not fail? – Robert H. Schuller
What an amazing and intriguing question this is! Think about it. What would you do if you knew you would succeed?
Now think about this: “Knowing” is not so much a matter of doing something, as it is believing, without any doubt, that you can do it.
So many of our limitations are self-imposed. Either we think we can’t do something, or we believe other people when they tell us we can’t.
Consider the case of former Russian Olympic weightlifter Vasily Alexeev. Alexeev was the first man to clean and jerk 500 pounds, BUT…the first time he did it, he didn’t even realize it until after the fact.
Alexeev had put up 495, even 499 pounds on several occasions, but had never been able to break the 500 pound barrier no matter how many times he tried. One day in 1974, during a training session, his coach had him lift a bar with 499 pounds. Having done it before, Alexeev was confident he could do it again, and indeed, lifted the bar overhead. After he dropped the weight to the ground, his coach told him that instead of being 499 pounds on the bar, there had actually been 501.5 pounds.
Vasily’s limitations didn’t stem from a lack of strength, they came from a lack of belief. Somewhere inside of himself, a little voice was telling him, “You can’t lift 500 pounds. It’s not possible.” His coach understood this and “tricked” the voice so that it didn’t interfere with Vasily’s attempt.
How many of our limitations aren’t really due to anything real, but to our own self-doubt? Believing you can do something that you once thought was impossible can be the hardest obstacle to overcome. But if you can get rid of that mindset, you might just be amazed at what you can accomplish.
The next time you’re thinking about your dreams and that little voice whispers in your ear that you can’t do it so why bother to try, tell it to shut up and get out of your way. Then go out and chase those dreams!