“Adversity causes some men to break; others to break records.” – William Arthur Ward
Sometimes it is that small still voice inside of us, whispering new ideas and adventures, calling us to step out. Sometimes it is a loud voice screaming seemingly outlandish exploits that we never even imagined or contemplated. We all have these experiences every once in a while and some of us more often than not. That is, the very idea that there is and always has been more to us than what meets the eye, or what we have alleged to be, and that person is on the verge of breaking out, once and for all.
Whether it has been due to fear, what we claim as humility or simply afraid that we just might become successful at whatever it may be, often times we shun ourselves and quickly defuse any thoughts of being more than what we currently are. Well today I want us to challenge those ideas and imagine what it would look like to have a breakout moment that could impact the rest of our lives, our families and communities.
So I will be 49 this year, and it has taken me nearly all my life to figure out that I had been hiding behind myself. That is to say, there came a time when I knew my current status and life outlook (back then) did not accurately reflect who I was or going to be in the future, however like so many of us, even that awareness was not enough to shift me from mundane thinking. Most of my goals seemed far off, unattainable or flat-out impossible. I had lofty goals, but no real plan on how to achieve them. I mean I wrote some things down, but really never developed a comprehensive plan on what I wanted to accomplish and how I would get there. So ultimately my plan was to get nowhere fast, and in some cases I did just that. Sound familiar?
The last 10 years have been an extraordinary opportunity for growth, both personally and professionally. With any growth, comes challenges that can teach us new things, specifically new things about ourselves. One of the indicators of maturity is one’s ability to actually grasp the lessons that are designed for him/her. What can you take away that you will use the next time? Not only can this practice prevent future heartache, but it may hold the keys to a promotion in the workplace or allow new doors to open for you.
Breakout moments require more than just belief in your dreams. It requires a type of courage that moves one into relentless action. An action that will never accept “no” as the final answer and is willing to explore options, solicit support, work tirelessly and maximize the resources around him/her. Quite often this type of courage lives at the doorsteps of rejection and disappointment, however the you that has been hiding behind the curtain is already aware of this and prepared to take corrective action. That said, be aware of the man or woman who has been beat down and has not only had time to heal, but has developed an improved game plan and no longer fears failure.
We all go through slumps, some longer than others, but just like professional athletes, we can never stop shooting because we missed the last 10 shots. Keep working hard toward the goal, remove the naysayers from your ear, reflect on what went right, learn from what did not go according to plan and continue to believe you will have your breakout moment.