“To uncover your true potential, you must first find your own limits and then you have to have the courage to blow past them.” – Picabo Street
Do you know what your true potential is? Have you ever given it much thought, or has it been something that you only occasionally spend any time considering? To be able to prepare a roadmap or timeline for achieving goals, you first must have some goals in mind. This generally means that you have some inkling what you ultimately want to do with your life, although many goals are simply interim accomplishments while you actively search for that overriding meaningful life purpose.
Still, trying to figure out what you’re made of and, even more important, what you are capable of, takes time. There’s no simple shortcut that can propel you past the decision-making process without much effort. In fact, unlocking and discovering your true potential can take a lot longer than you think.
It can also occur rather quickly.
So, what’s the secret behind uncovering your true potential? What steps can you take to ensure you’re on the right path to be able to figure this all out? Here are some tips:
Pick an area of interest and study up on it.
So, what if you don’t know a thing about creating an organizational structure, crafting a business proposal, securing a home loan, applying for college, asking someone out on a date (really, there’s a first time for everyone)? There are resources available to help you gain the information you need as well as tips on how to go about the process. Take some time to research and study the topic to see if it warrants further interest and effort. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. At the very least, you’ll find some things that pique your interest and maybe more than that.
Take the first steps — even if it’s scary.
Granted, some undertakings are massive in scope. Knowing they’ll take a great deal of time and effort might be enough to dissuade you, but if you believe this is something that’s important to your future, take the first steps. You can always alter course later if it turns out this isn’t an area you want to pursue further. To make any substantive progress, however, you need to begin at the beginning.
Regard all mistakes as learning opportunities.
You’re not going to be successful on the first try with everything you do. You will run into obstacles. That’s a given. Some of these will be huge, enough to cause you to think about quitting. Others won’t be so difficult and you’ll be able to navigate them without too much difficulty. Still, mistakes will be made. It’s up to you to learn what you can from them. Even if it seems painful or impossible, there is a lesson in every mistake or perceived failure. You won’t know what you’re made of or be able to unlock your true potential if you refuse to learn from your mistakes.
When you encounter a hurdle, find the strength to push past it.
No doubt you’ll encounter many an obstacle that seems formidable. You might be tempted to quit and go on to tackle something else, perhaps something a little less strenuous or demanding. But this isn’t the time to give up; it’s the time to push on. So, you’ve reached what you think is your limit. Is it really the best you can do? Is this all you have to give or do you have a reservoir of strength that you can draw on? Some of the most remarkable discoveries occur at the precise moment of a seeming dead-end. Find your strength and courage and be willing to push past the hurdle. Your true potential will always be just ahead of you. If you keep your eyes open, stay focused on the present and put forth your full effort, you will begin to see it and be able to create action plans to achieve the next desirable goal.
Nothing is impossible.
The first person to climb Mount Everest probably thought it was an impossible mission. Pursuing a heartfelt goal, no matter how difficult, time-consuming, physically and/or mentally draining shows you that you’ve got substance, persistence and a compelling desire to see a challenge through. Remember that nothing is impossible, if you fully commit to it and are willing to endure the obstacles and tough times you’re likely to face.
Keep this in mind: If you want to uncover your true potential, you must be willing to work for it.