Achieving Your Goals and the Power of Belief - Part 1
Updated: Dec 5, 2018
If you were asked whether you thought an adopted high school dropout could go on to build a multi-billion dollar company, one that would eventually become America's most admired, and have a personal net worth of over $10 billion, would you believe that was possible?
If you were asked whether you thought a deaf and blind girl could go on to earn a Bachelor of Arts Degree, become the first deaf and blind person to graduate from University, and become a world famous speaker and author, would you believe that was possible?
If you were asked whether you thought a dyslexic boy, who never went to University, could go on to build one of the world's most recognised brands and amass an estimated net worth of over £4 billion, would you believe that was possible?
Let's switch gears for a minute.
One of my favourite scenes in the movie The Matrix is right after Neo's and Trinity's daring rescue of Morpheus. They all race to the subway station to escape via a payphone. Morpheus goes first. Trinity goes next. She exits the Matrix only milli-seconds before Agent Smith appears and shoots the payphone to pieces. Neo, whose initial instinct was to turn and run (no surprise, considering his initial encounter with the agents), suddenly changes his mind and instead stays to fight. The brief dialogue between Trinity and Morpheus as they watch from outside the Matrix goes like this:
Trinity: "Run, Neo. Run! What's he doing?"
Morpheus: "He's beginning to believe."
And believe he does.
This simple yet powerful scene highlights one of the secrets to great achievements in any arena of life. The secret is belief. Yes, belief.
It's been said that you can never rise above your expectations and that where you are in life is exactly where you have chosen to be. The choices you make about your life, relationships, career, health, and the like, are all affected by what you truly believe is possible. Does that sound harsh?
James Allen, renowned author of As a Man Thinketh, said,
"You are today where your thoughts have brought you. You will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you."
We all have perceptions of what we believe is possible for us to accomplish in our personal or professional lives. In some respects, it's probably easier for you to believe in the ability of others than you can in your own ability. Consider the characters in the opening scenarios, Steve Jobs, Helen Keller, and Richard Branson probably didn't realise the scale of the success they would achieve. However you define success, one thing is certain - they each understood that the greatest limits on what is possible are the ones we impose on ourselves.
Yes, we all face obstacles. Yes, we all experience challenges. Yes, there are only so many hours in a day. Yes, the resources available to us are not endless. Yes, you may even have a difficult boss. Still, our greatest challenge isn't the many obstacles we face, but the fact that we limit ourselves.
Where do our ideas of what is possible come from?
For most of us, they come from what people have told us over the years, many well meaning people, including our loving parents. Other times, they come from our own experiences and observations. However, can we really always rely on what people have said or what our experiences tell us?
Let's look to sports for the answer.
For many years, prior to 1954, breaking the 4-minute mile barrier was not only considered impossible but a risk to the health of any athlete who attempted to reach it. So, when Roger Bannister raced past the finish line after 3 minutes, 59.4 seconds, not only did he break the record, he also broke through a psychological barrier.
Since his victory, the 4-minute mile barrier has been broken many times the world over. A sobering and pertinent reminder that our greatest limitations are within us, not outside us.
What do you truly believe is possible for you to accomplish in your life? What are some beliefs you have that hold you back from achieving your personal and professional aspirations?
The greatest limitations to achieving your life goals are not external, but the self-imposed limitations within.
In Part 2, I'll share a number of helpful ideas for unleashing the power of belief in achieving your personal and professional goals, as well as a sticky point to watch out for.
In the meantime, stay hungry, stay open, and stay committed to living your best life, TODAY!