In both my personal and professional life, I see persons fighting a battle between what persons expect of them and their true potential – often unbeknownst to them. I see persons engage in self-sabotaging thoughts and behaviours because the work, discomfort and risk it takes to be truly great seems to be a cost too high to pay.
Persons define themselves or have definitions placed on them based on where they grew up, their gender, the colour of their skin, educational background and societal expectations. We settle into a routine which keeps us swimming round the same small fishbowl because of what we have chosen to believe for ourselves. Too many of us walk around with unlocked potential because we are afraid to do more, have more and be more…hell, some of us may not even know that there is more! For some of us it’s because we were never motivated by self or our loved ones to strive, while others of us know full well what we are capable of but choose not to push into that realm because it’s unfamiliar and uncomfortable but quite honestly, we are freaking terrified of failing and truth be told, some of us are just lazy.
We often settle because greatness takes hard work and discipline; it takes coming out of our comfort zones and defying our habitual nature; it requires often being ridiculed for trying to break the mold, it means defying the odds stacked against us, it means being uncomfortable and pushing past the urge to revert to previous behaviours; and it means often having to fight with that devil on our shoulder that tells us to quit and stay the same. Being more requires a level of sacrifice that seems daunting compared to the reward we hope to gain. Not striving for more is the easy way out, in fact, it’s a cop out too many of us opt for. It’s the safe option that results in minimal losses but also minimal gains.
But at what point do we dare for more? At what point do we push past our own limited expectations and the expectations of others to fulfil our God-given potential? When do we stop being lazy and do the necessary introspection and subsequent labour to be where we have the capability to be?
When does the cycle of absentee fathers end and men strive to be good fathers even though they didn’t know theirs? When do women stop logging on to sugardaddies.com and strive to be women of virtue? When do we stop bleaching our skin to try to fit in with the Jones’? When do we choose to go back to school to obtain CXC subjects and move on to higher education instead of digging out our hand middles on the corner? When do we choose to work hours of overtime to excel in a position instead of sitting at the people’s job idling on DearDream?
When do we defy the “man a gyalis” mentality and be satisfied with being a one-burner? When do we stop settling for half-assed efforts and half-dead relationships? When do we stop being just walking penises and vaginas and strive for actual meaningful relationships? When will our relationships stop being simply about pu**y and money? When do we feel the fear of falling in love and chuck out of the plane without a parachute because it may end up being the best god-damn relationship of our lives? (Follow up post on this separate kettle of fish later on)
It might be seem like I’m draping up and dragging with this post and I am but please believe that I gave myself a massive drape up and a hard stare in the mirror while writing this. When I first heard Marianne Williamson’s poem, “Our Greatest Fear”, I cried because it resonated with me so much. I realized I wasn’t frightened of being too little but of the magnitude of my potential and if I’d be able to realize it. Persons who are closest to me will tell you that I am such a paradox because I struggle with fear and anxiety even as a Counselling Psychologist. But when I heard that poem I realized how much I feared failing in spite of the great chance of the polar opposite. So in order to dodge the possibility of failure I often settled for mediocrity by avoiding taking certain risks because I didn’t want to fall flat on my face. Other times I will admit that my heart is willing but I’m lazy and choose my bed instead of waking up to be awesome 😉 Nevertheless I digress…
So my friends, here’s the deal; today let’s choose to be greater than the limited expectations and labels we’ve settled for. Let’s take the leap and just do it like Nikey: free falling and learning to fly toward our destinies. Let’s decide to push past our fears, anxieties, insecurities, comforts and risk what we may lose for the reward that we’ll gain.
Stop selling yourself short; do more, have more and be more.