Neil DeGrasse Tyson hosts a new series on Fox entitled Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey (http://www.cosmosontv.com/). Contemplating the series caused me to reflect on a common statement I make in my coaching practice. Success as a continued lifestyle results from an awareness of the full complement of natural laws. That includes physical properties like gravity, inertia, motion, and potential.
A potential client once confessed to me that he had always been told that he had potential, but he was never told HOW to succeed with it. I smiled because that is exactly my gift– to explain the how. Teachers, counselors, Sunday school teachers, and other adults are often fond of “encouraging” young people by saying, “You have a lot of potential. You just need to put in the work.” What they miss is that the person they are talking to is YOUNG. They do not have the benefit of experience gained from years of trial and error. The comment is valuable, but as a beginning to an engaged mentoring process. That young person will benefit to the extent that the adult is able to provide step-by-step guidance, example, and ongoing support.
The first step is to perceive your success as the natural result your choices in the physical world. The answer to unlocking your potential is neatly nestled within the natural law of physics. An object lifted has potential energy because of gravity. In order to activate that potential energy, it has to be released from what is holding it in the air. The momentum is not the danger. The question of the object’s remaining intact is whether it is brittle or whether it is elastic. The lessons within the physics of motion are lessons for your consistent success.
You Need Lift
Keep moving higher. Spend more time with what lifts you and less time with what brings you low. It is advisable to let stressors go, especially when the stressor is a person. Family members are the hardest to let go. Give them a specific time during the week, and ONLY engage with them for that specified, time-limited period.
You Need Gravity
When it is worth more, it costs more. The success you want will cost. You will have to put in the time. You may fall flat in the moment. But, learn continually and stay focused on improving.
You Need Release
The hardest lesson to learn is to let go of what you are “supposed” to do, keep, think, or respect. Learning, advancing requires you to let go of some of what you have been taught. Other prior knowledge is to be built upon. Either way, you cannot remain in the same place you started.
You Need to Bounce Back
Realize that fear paralyzes because failure seems like the end of you. It feels like you will be embarrassed and ridiculed. You may. Do not allow the possibility of failure to convince you that there is only one way. Do not become brittle, closed minded, and myopic.
Even when faced with failure (or slow returns), you can make a choice to continue the story. You can bounce back from any fall. With that fear overcome, you have no worry but that your smart, consistent, collaborative work will produce dividends.
[ Michael A. Wright, PhD, LAPSW is a father of two girls and a boy. He is also a 20 year veteran husband. He works as a leadership coach and organization consultant based in Nashville, Tennessee. With over 16 years of experience guiding individuals to their goals, Michael has the techniques and patience to help you succeed. Follow @MAWMedia on Twitter or connect for a consultation at MAWMedia.com ]