“As a frightened man in a burning boat has only one way to the rest of his life, we must move with courage through the wall of flame into the greater sea.”
Mark Nepo, poet and spiritual adviser
Image from Unsplash by dan carlson
Where and when in your life did you last demonstrate significant courage? What are some examples of facing your fears and jumping into an unsettled sea?
Today’s quote does not suggest we risk life and limb as proof of courage, but does suggest that we should welcome the heat, and test the waters of our days more often.
What are some current situations in which you are experiencing the flames of fears?
When in the past did you step through such flames, standing taller on the other side?
To what degree is your current level of courage putting you on a course to fulfill the vision you have for your life?
When can and will you step up and over the edge of your fears to realize far more of your potential?
“Morning is when I am awake, and there is dawn in me.”
—Henry David Thoreau, 19th Century American naturalist, writer, philosopher
Image from Unsplash by patuphotos
I’m an early to bed and early to rise kind of guy—try as I might over the years to play with my circadian rhythm, this way of living just works best for me.
Mornings always seem to begin with boundless potential, and I love the idea of getting a head start on things well before most people hit their snooze alarm for the first time.
What is your relationship with mornings?
How can the dawn of a new day spark your engagement and efforts to make it a great one?
“You’re Astonishing! How dare you waste it!”
—Seth Godin, American author and former dot com business executive
Image from Unsplash by Colton Sturgeon
Today’s quote made me smile and frown at the same time—I love being happily surprised and astonished by amazing people, places, and things.
Seeing what is possible become realized inspires me to continue my own pursuit of excellence.
What have you done or achieved in your life which astonished yourself and others?
How far back do you need to go to recall these memories?
What have you done more recently that raises eyebrows and has more than a few jaws drop?
Who do you know that astonishes you?
When did you last tell them about your thoughts and feelings?
How much of your potential for excellence and greatness is still in the tank?
Set sail! You’ll never know unless you go. Explore the possibilities of today.
—Calm App Reflection
Image from Unsplash by Andrew Ridley
Where are you headed today, this week, in the new year? Where are you planning to go, and what are you going to do along the way and once you get there?
Like Christopher Columbus and Magellan, how can and will you find new possibilities and potential by embracing the explorer within?
This all sounds exciting! However, many of us are anchored in our seemingly safe and comfortable harbors and rarely set sail toward new horizons.
One of my favorite TV shows is The Amazing Race, in which 12 teams of two travel the globe to experience new places and explore different cultures.
Although many roadblocks are built into their adventures, virtually all participants acknowledge the significant impact of going beyond their own limitations to realize far more of their potential.
In what ways can and will you set sail in this new year? What amazing adventures and opportunities might you discover beyond your own personal horizons?
“I would like to die on Mars, just not on impact.”
—Elon Musk, CEO, at Tesla and at SpaceX
Image from Unsplash by Nicolas Lobos
Elon Musk probably lives by the credo “No Risk, No Reward.” He has clearly pushed the boundaries of entrepreneurship to their limits, and in many cases, come out on top. Although financial success is used on many occasions to demonstrate achievement, Musk’s shoot-for-the stars approach almost always focuses on making a difference and leaving a contributing dent in the universe.
Clearly venturing into space safely and reaching the red planet in one piece is pretty high on his list.
What impact do you wish to make with your personal and professional life? How can you more courageously go where you’ve never been before to explore and reach new levels of your potential?
“The challenges that we face test us and help reveal our true potential.”
Image from Unsplash by Taylor Wilcox
In school, we receive a lesson and then take the test. In life, we are tested and challenged—and only then do we sometimes embrace the lesson.
How and in what ways are your personal and professional circumstances testing your physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual capacities? Where are you being pushed and pulled to stretch beyond your perceived limits?
Where does your true potential lie beyond your current view of yourself?
Answering these questions many not always give us a full picture of our potential growth opportunities. Sometimes members of our communities who act as sounding boards or mirrors can reveal even more than we can visualize on our own.
Identify at least one family member, professional colleague, mentor, or coach to explore the various challenges and tests you are facing. Explore how such relationships can reveal even more of your true potential. Consider how taking on such a role for others can also enhance your own growth.
“Following the crowd never gets you very far.”
Image from Unsplash by Chuttersnap
It is human nature to want to belong to our professional and personal communities. We tend to thrive and live longer, happier lives due to the supportive relationships around us.
Following the crowd and group think, however, is rarely associated with extraordinary levels of achievement and excellence. When one looks at the subject of personal mastery, important relationships with role models, mentors, teachers, and coaches are always involved. And yet, they evolve and change over time, to propel people forward, often leaving once valued relationships behind.
Where in your life have you and are you following the crowd? How has doing so held you back from going even further in either your personal or professional life?
What bolder, more courageous actions can and will you take to realize even more of your fullest potential?
“It’s hard to see your own face without a mirror.”
—Phil McGraw, American TV Personality “Dr. Phil”
Image from Unsplash by Laurenz Kleinheider
I recently facilitated a team-building workshop with one of my favorite clients. Half of the twelve participants had worked with me before. The other six were with me for the first time. The senior leader has been coaching each of them for more than a decade and he wanted to boost his efforts with this session.
We discussed a variety of topics, and did a strength/weakness exercise, which is fairly standard for such meetings. Surprisingly, the feedback and comments from their colleagues made an even bigger impression on the participants than most expected.
Where are or could you more fully use the people in your personal and professional communities as a mirror, to realize more of your fullest potential?
“Their opinion of your potential has nothing to do with your opportunity to prevail.”
—Brendon Burchard, High Performance Author
“What others think about you is none of your business” is a thought to consider, particularly when being judged harshly.
Consider your parents, teachers, bosses, and friends, and see how many of them sapped you versus zapped you over the years.
Unfortunately, many of these usually well-intended folks leave a negative wake and plant bitter seeds that can dramatically impact our self-worth and confidence.
Who are the negative, unsupportive, and even toxic people in your world that could be avoided?
Where and in what ways can and will you find the determination, grit, and tenacity to prevail in your most important priorities?
Consider working with a coach, mentor, or friend to support your efforts.