In a recent turn of events, I've begun paying attention to the stories I tell myself. And by "stories" I don't mean fictional, entertaining, amusing anecdotes, but rather those other kinds of stories. The reasons and excuses I give myself - not to mention those I tell other people - for why I haven't done this thing, or achieved that thing. THOSE stories!
In an effort to change the way some of those stories play out, I've started asking myself a lot of important questions. Among them are these seemingly obvious ones I sometimes overlook. Because the easiest things are often the easiest to overlook:
- What do I really want?
- What would have to change in order to make that happen?
- What am I afraid of?
- If this (fill in the blank with excuse) weren't true, would that (fill in the blank with dream) be possible?
- What would I have to give up in order to get that?
- Would the "sacrifices" be worth it?
The list goes on, but what a great start - these alone, if seriously considered - will give you hours and hours of fun. (And some hours that also aren't necessarily fun, but which feel important, nonetheless!) The more I ask these questions, the more I'm learning about myself.
This Ayn Rand quote also stands out to me, in this context: “The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.”
Give Credit Where Credit Is Due: I've read this quote many times before, but most recently, I came across it again while reading the spectacular Chris Guillebeau's blog, The Art of Non-Conformity. This post in particular, entitled "How to be Awesome." Many thanks, Chris! Timing is everything, eh? (Which is to say, I read his blog regularly but today was the first time I followed a recent link back to that piece. Just when I could "hear" it best.)