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Burn the Ships

Every day someone between the ages of 29 to 45 wakes up with the thought,

This is not the life I wanted.

Sadly, few are willing to do anything to change their life. Instead, they practice avoidance or make themselves believe they are doing something different when they are not. 

Let me ask you, what are you willing to do differently to have the life you want? Have these “things” that you could be doing been a consistent thought in your life over the years?

Sure, it’s easy to say yes, but putting that yes into action can be pretty tricky, right? Self-control takes many attempts to put into consistent motion sometimes.

If you said yes, there are things you can do to improve your life, then look back at your life – are you truly following through with them, or have years passed, and you still aren’t any closer to where you want to be? 

When are you going to do something about your own life? 

Your life is your responsibility - no one else's! 

What three things could you do right now to start obtaining the life you want? Start small and build on them every four days!

And, by the way, what do you want for your life? (You must answer this question with complete clarity, direction, and focus. Shooting in the dark or having some idea will only lead to more ambiguity and confusion, ultimately leading to depression and unhappiness). 

Did you know…

The average human does not even reach 40% of their potential. 

COME ON, not even 40% – that’s ridiculous. To me, this is devastating. I want to reach all of my potential, don’t you?

One of the reasons why I believe we love going to the movies and concerts and are enamored with celebrities and successful people is because they have (at least stereotypically) “reached their potential.” Or at least that’s what many unconsciously may tell themselves.

They are “living the dream,” and many people live through them. Many people idolize their status, power, fame, or wealth. 

However, I believe true courage, bravery, and the ability to reach your full potential come from trusting in God, believing in yourself, and having a winning mindset.  

What do you think?

Your belief in success must be firmer than your belief in failure. 

We have more certainty of what celebrities are talented at or trying to be skilled at than our talents. Why is this? Famous individuals branded themselves and declared to the world, “this is what I am going to be known for,” and then went after it, not allowing others to stop them. They were 100% committed.

What mindset do you need to develop to be 100% committed to your dreams? 

Perhaps, it’s time you burned your boats and stopped rescuing yourself away from your dreams.

Burning the ship alludes to the point of no return. In colonial times, commanders would order their men to burn the vessels when they landed in hostile territories, to take retreating off the table forcing their soldiers to either conquer or be conquered.

Do you have too many options on the table? These options may cause you to be conquered. 

Sometimes to get committed to something we desire, we must burn our mental ships. We all have safety rafts or vessels that take us away from the territory or goals we sincerely want but are too apprehensive about attempting to conquer. It’s incredible what psychological fear and negative self-talk can do to a person. 

However, when you burn your mental ships, you tell yourself, “I cannot turn back – I am committing. I am making a way. I will be successful in this.” It’s amazing what taking “plan B” off the table can do to your focus and determination. Pick a path and MAKE IT work!

Once the ships are on fire, your only option is to move forward and normalize the new emotions running through your body, so you either move toward your goals, do nothing, or die trying! That is the conviction you must have. Are you ready to burn your ships? If so…

Pour the gas and light the match!

People who have “made it” never give up on developing, polishing, and persevering in their goals. Also, let’s be very honest right now. Luck is a fundamental variable in making it. Of course, we cannot measure precisely how much luck goes into someone making it because it’s not a controlled variable. 

But, before you say you aren’t lucky, know that a study was done regarding luck. The study followed two groups of 100 people each. The first group was 100 self-proclaimed lucky people, and the second group was 100 self-proclaimed unlucky people. The researchers placed a 100-dollar bill on a sidewalk for all 200 people. Guess what! 100% of the self-proclaimed lucky individuals found the $100 bill, whereas 0% of the self-proclaimed unlucky individuals did not find the money. So, luck may be more of a self-belief than anything.

Optimism is powerful!

Again and again, we hear how some model, musician, entrepreneur, innovator, or actor was told they would not make it, but they chose to believe in themselves more than in that person’s belief. Yet, so many people want to believe in themselves but allow others’ opinions to control their self-belief in themselves. 

Not everybody wants the same end goal, but most people wish to become their best and reach their fullest potential.

The only way to do that is to be you – entirely. (If you don’t know how to be you, continue following this series to learn how to be and find yourself). It would help if you remembered not to allow others to dictate your life or to let you fall off course. The more I work as an Executive Coach and study humanity, the more I learn that no one knows what they are doing in life, and it’s all a bit of a guessing game.

You must go after your dreams full-heartedly, removing failure from the table and not taking “no” for an answer. Besides, a step forward is a step forward. Even when times feel stiff, and you are overcome with fear and doubt, you must believe you can and will persevere, with the belief and faith that you have made it to your highest potential – to that ultimate dream your heart yearns for day after day. 

Becoming your best self is a journey, not a destination. 

We admire and love the 1% not because of their bank account but for their courage — people who made it give us hope. You may never know if that A-lister doubted herself the entire time working towards her dreams. The lesson is she did it with doubt and fear, and her hopes and ambitions were more prominent than her apprehensions. 

So what do you say?

Go ahead, light the match, and burn your mental ships.