We all have dreams. We all hope that someday those dreams will become reality. We all want to accomplish big things in life, and we all want to succeed. We want the very best for ourselves.
But often times when we set foot to travel down the path to succeed at our goals, we stop. We stare at the long path ahead of us, awaiting us, and we stop in our tracks. It’s the unknown. A path full of obstacles, and bumps, and mountains to climb. Fear starts to loom over our heads, and we begin to feel hesitant about starting on this journey.
Questions of “What if?” start to fill our minds. “What if I don’t get into that college? What if I don’t get the job? What if it doesn’t work out? What if everyone else is better than me? What if I am not good enough? What if?”
That fear turns into anxiety, and we decide not to proceed down the path. Instead, we decide not to move and stay at that exact spot; or even worse, we decide to turn back.
It is at that moment that we see that our biggest hindrance was not the obstacles, or the bumps, or the mountains. Our biggest hindrance was ourselves. We were our biggest enemy.
But why is it that we become our own worst enemy? Why do we stop ourselves from going for it and trying to accomplish something great?
We may not always realize it but doubt, particularly in ourselves and our capabilities, can hold us back.
We are consumed with doubt and often worry that we won’t be able to accomplish what it is we are trying to succeed at, so we don’t try.
We can become so worried about what others will think, or become filled with anxiety if we don’t succeed and others see us fail. It can lead us to not speaking up at school, or at work. It can make us decide to not apply for certain jobs or to turn down opportunities.
But why are we so afraid to embark toward the unknown? Why are we afraid to fail?
Growing up, my parents used to always tell me to try for something, because the worse thing that could happen is that I didn’t achieve what I wanted to achieve. “The worse thing they can say is no,” they would tell me.
And they’re right.
Say that you’re applying for a job that you know everyone else will apply for, and you know it might be a long shot, but you really want this job. You’re passionate about this job, and you know that it would be an incredible opportunity for you.
Do you not apply for it because you know so many other people will and because you figure that you won’t get it?
You apply for it anyway. Because the worse thing they can tell you is no.
Yes, it might make you a little sad if you don’t get the job; but the matter of the fact is that you didn’t lose anything. You didn’t have the job, to begin with, so it won’t hurt you in any way. You just have to brush yourself off and keep trying for a job.
But if you get the job, you have gained everything. You have gained a memorable experience that will help you learn and grow.
So why continue to doubt your capabilities?
The lesson to learn here is to be more confident in ourselves and what we are capable of. Don’t be afraid to take risks because they make not come out the way you had anticipated or hoped. Jump into it anyway. Regardless of the outcome, you will learn valuable lessons. And, honestly, even if you do not succeed in your goal, failing will teach you valuable lessons that will help you in your next attempt and will put you one step closer to achieving your goal.
So take risks. Go for it. Do not doubt yourself. Instead, be your biggest cheerleader and tell yourself that you can do it and that you will do it. Don’t give up on yourself, or sell yourself short.
Because you are capable of whatever you set your mind to.
Inhale confidence. Exhale doubt.