Are you focused on what needs to be done in order to complete the task at hand or are you consumed by the possibility of what could be?
I find most people drift to what is acceptable. After all, that’s what we’ve been conditioned to do our entire life. Follow the rules, stay in the lines, and don’t rock the boat.
So we do.
And eventually, we stop considering what’s possible. As a matter of fact, we start thinking what’s possible and what’s acceptable are the same things. Mediocrity soon follows.
Why Should We Care? It’s always the maverick that breaks the record or sets the standard. Always. Those willing to wonder what is possible rather than settle for what is acceptable are the ones we follow. I mean, who want’s to walk down the same path all the time? Off the path is where the real fruit is.
Acceptable is okay, but not great. Acceptable meets the standard, but never exceeds it. Acceptable means that you’re never the worst, but also ensures that you’re never the best.
Possible wonders what is possible - even if they’ve never seen it before. Possible raises the standard for everyone - whether they know it or not. Possible realizes ‘best’ is relative - we’re all competing with ourselves, not each other.
REAL TALK - Action Steps Developing and maintaining a “possible” mindset, rather than an “acceptable” mindset, is difficult. I think everyone is different in their approach, but here are a few ideas that I’ve found helpful in fighting the complacency of an “acceptable” mindset.
“Detach from man’s approval.”
The most damaging thing to taking risks and going for what is possible is the judgement that will be poured on you from those comfortable accepting what is acceptable. Comparing yourself to others and seeking approval from those outside your Inner Circle is a game you never win. By detaching from the approval of others, we free ourselves to take the risks necessary to discover what is possible.
Embrace “The Power of Yet”
I’ve got great news for you. You’re going to fail. The good news is that the failure never defines you, it’s your response to that perceived failure that will define you. Some will use it as an excuse to quit, or settle. Others, those chasing possibilities, will view it for what it is - not yet. Yet conveys the understanding that it will happen - that is inevitable. The only question is when.
Everything around us is pushing for more - more information, more entertainment, more comfort. Well, more isn’t always better. This is particularly true when we realize that the majority of what we hear is just noise. No impact, no relevance, just noise. Possible is reserved for people willing to turn off the noise and understand themselves.
Think of the discoveries, accomplishments, and milestones that are simply the result of someone saying “I wonder what happens if …”. Curiosity erased what seemed impossible at the time. Without wonder, what is there?
I want you to think about what’s possible. Go for it. Fight for it. Stop settling. In your profession, with your family, in your relationships, in your faith. Make an intentional effort to go beyond what is acceptable. Acceptable is for people willing to settle for a life of someone else’s choosing. Dream of what is possible. Then, detach from the approval of others, believe in the power of yet, be quiet, and stay curious.
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