When we shift from being an observer to becoming an active participant in our lives, something interesting happens. What's often found is that the greatest obstacle to accomplishing our goals comes from inside.
Most of the time, we just need to get out of our own way.
I've seen it in the students I've taught who want to carve their own path instead of the ones that their parents or society say they should follow.
I've seen it in myself when it came to taking my first entrepreneurial leap. Heck -- I feel it in myself as I write this post.
I've seen it in the extremely successful entrepreneurs I interview who, before launching their business, came face-to-face with their fear of failure.
Often times all it takes to get out of our own way is just a subtle shift in thinking and focusing on the positive. Easier said than done, I know, but don't take my word for it. Listen to Jay Stolar: "If you get out of your own way, you can accomplish anything."
In his music video #MyOwnWay (which benefits the Love is Louder movement), Stolar spreads the message that happiness comes from how you look at your situation and your willingness to love yourself.
With a marker in hand, Stolar writes the word "Buried" on the reflective surface of his mirror. Others line up to share their deep seed of negativity and write their word, as well:
Perhaps you too have a word that embraces your greatest fear. Being rejected. Failing. Go ahead, write it on the mirror.
What's my word? "Stuck." If I look at my life right now in one way, I can feel incredibly stuck. After my wife's severe case of Lyme Disease poured concrete over our feet just four days after we said "I do", it's become a daily struggle to not feel stuck. She went from running a half-marathon to sitting in a wheelchair in a matter of weeks. And for a vagabond like me, "Stuck" is a tough emotion to feel. But if I invert this word and focus on the positive like Stolar demonstrates, my word can become "Focused." And someone with wanderlust, if I am not forced to be focused, It's incredibly tough to sit still and focus on the present.
If you were to invert your word and focus on the positive, what would it be? Free? Beautiful? Human? Supported? Everything? Alive? Healthy? Never give up?
As a teacher, an entrepreneur, and just a guy who wants to be the best version of himself, I've seen my fair share of destructive criticism. There's a whole lot out there that tries to hold you back. Don't let yourself join that crowd.
Love is Louder is a project of The Jed Foundation. It helps support those who struggle to stay up amidst all the negative thoughts, words, and actions that bring us down. You can help keep it on the positive and support Love is Louder by clicking here.
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