How much of your life are you leaving on the table? This isn’t meant as some kind of a rah-rah question. You don’t need a cheerleader. You do need a quick reality check. We all do. Ask yourself right now… Am I living up to my potential or tapping into less than what’s possible? As in, 80% of my potential? 60%? 40%?

Here are five things that get in our way…

1. Self Talk – The words we speak to ourselves are our greatest enemy. “I’m not good enough, strong enough, smart enough.” If you’re saying those things to yourself, you’re right. As long as that’s the language you use to speak into your own life, you will never reach your full potential. Today, right now, write down ten things you’re great at. Then, speak those back to yourself and drown out all the negative garbage you’ve been focusing on.

2. Other’s Talk – Listening to the words that others speak can pull us back as well. “You’re going to try what? Isn’t that a little risky? Are you sure that’s a good idea?” The right answer to those questions is this… “Yes, I’m going to try it. It’s a little risky, and I’m not sure it is a good idea, but I’ll never know unless I try, and I’ll never get the rewards unless I give it a shot.” Too often, we take advice from the cheap seats rather than from people who are playing the game with us. Choose who you’re going to listen to wisely.

3. Our Vision – If we can’t see it, we can’t be it. If all we can see in our lives is where we’re at right now, then that’s where we’ll stay. Think about taking a vacation. Anticipating what it will feel like to step off the plane when you arrive is one of the things that push you to buy the tickets and take flight. We imagine the trip before we take it, and that is what creates the excitement around going. Living full lives is the same. It requires vision for what the future will look like, feel like, and be like. That’s what fuels us to do the work.

4. Being Comfortable – Status quo can be very comfortable, like a worn-out old sofa. As long as you’re comfortable sitting in it, not thinking about how much better a new couch could feel, you’ll stay stuck – even though there’s that one spring that pokes you every time you sit down. That spring is the world telling you there’s something more for you. Remember this… getting uncomfortable is essential if you want to quit leaving life on the table. 

5. Blaming the World – When we talk about taking extreme ownership and reaching our potential, blame is not part of that conversation. Where you started does not dictate where you’ll end up. Yes, some of us began life with some challenges and things stacked against us, but those things don’t have to hold us back. How we show up in life, regardless of what the rest of the world throws at us, is what defines success or failure.

The Takeaway

Again, this isn’t meant to be a rah-rah session. It’s meant to make you think about how much of your life you’re leaving on the table and to encourage you to change some simple things to reach your potential. I can’t motivate you to do anything with this. Only you can motivate yourself… and I hope you do!

Ready to tap into your full potential? Me too. Subscribe here and I’ll send us all messages and reminders that will hold us accountable, drive us, and help us stay on track. I need to write these and hear these as much as I need to share them with you. Thanks for being part of this community! – John