Are You Your Own Worst Enemy?

Have you given up doing something even before you gave yourself an honest chance of succeeding?

Perhaps you started a redecorating project or writing a novel. You purchased all the necessary items and then never painted or wallpapered the room because you thought you couldn’t do it perfectly. You wrote the outline, table of contents and the introduction to your novel, without giving your literary talent a chance to flourish you abandoned it, because you think no one will read it. You begin a diet. Within a few days, you revert to your normal eating habits because you didn’t see immediate results.

Because of your past experiences when you have not achieved all that you wanted, you only remember getting bombarded with more and more work when you thought the project would take only a few days. You think the next project will end up the same, so you don’t begin or you slack off and let the fruits of our dreams fade away.

You need to become an expert at getting out of your own way when it comes to achieving your dreams. After all, you’ve gotten in your own way over and over for years.

We sabotage ourselves in any number of ways by our thoughts.

– I’m not good enough: On Monday, a group of students will be given a lecture by the worst teacher. The worst actor will star in a made-for-television movie. And the worst boy band will put on a mini show for friends and family in their garage. I don’t have any more talent than them, you say. What if the boys who became the Beatles had stopped practicing in Ringo’s garage—because, they thought they weren’t good enough.

– No one will be interested: Just look around at some of the things you see on television or read in newspapers or books or magazines. It is amazing some things have lasted this long—you intone. What if J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame would have told herself—No one will be interested, so why bother writing this novel.

– I’m too old/young: Colonel Sanders was sixty-five when he began his Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant. He died a multimillionaire. Phyllis Diller was 40-something when she became a star as a comedian—old by industry standards at the time, Diller achieved a record that still stands today in the Guinness Book of World Records for delivering 12 punch lines per minute. Anne Frank was a young girl when she wrote her diary which is still published and continues to be read throughout the world by the next generation.

– I don’t know what I want to do: You may not know exactly what you want to do, but there is something in the back of your mind that is important. Especially if you know you’re not happy in what you’re doing now, you know there’s more you want out of life. Do whatever your heart desires and see where it leads you.

– I want to do too much: No one says you can’t do a little of everything. Just pick one that will set the groundwork for the others. Find the common thread in the things you like, and start there. You can branch off once the foundation is in place.

-The universe is against me: Hm-m-m-m—Not at all. Once you set your mind to something and begin heading in a direction, the universe will open up in ways you can’t see right now. People will come into your life, events will take place, and you will begin to see more light at the end of the tunnel each day. But you have to make the first moves. Nothing takes place for you unless you do something. Do something, even if it is wrong, you can learn from that. Thomas Edison was asked if he was discouraged because he had 100 failures in his quest to invent the light bulb. “Discouraged! Edison exclaimed, I am closer to inventing the light bulb, I already know 100 ways how not to invent a light bulb, the next idea may be the one that works.”

– Motivational speaker Les Brown in his book “It’s Not Over Until You Win,” tells a story of a keynote speaker at a National Speakers Association conference he attended. The speaker was perhaps the worst speaker Les had ever heard. The man spoke in a monotone voice and was dull as a butter knife. By the end of his presentation, more than two-thirds of the audience had walked out. The speaker, noticing this said something that pretty much sums up the message of this article. “The reason I am up here (Doing) and you are sitting down there (watching) is because I represent the thoughts you have rejected for yourself.”

Give yourself a chance, get out of your own way and persevere. Perseverance pays off. If Edison could invent the first light bulb after 100+ non workable prototypes, you can create what you want too. It isn’t the amount of genius, it is the amount of perseverance.

Dorothy M. Neddermeyer, PhD, author, international speaker and inspirational leader. Dr. Neddermeyer empowers people to view life’s challenges as an opportunity for Personal/Professional Growth and Spiritual Awakening.