The Truth of the Matter

Rosie the Riveter would not have said that.


One of the strangest things I ever hear anyone say is: "I can't do [something]."

It's strange because no one ever says: "I can't turn into a falcon and fly away."

I mean, that I might buy.

No, instead, it's always:

I can't make my numbers this quarter.

Or maybe:

I can't spend more time at home.

In other words, it's always something that's so obviously doable. Maybe not easy, but definitely doable.

When you say you can't do something, one of two things is actually happening:

1. You're telling yourself a story that's likely not true.

For instance:  I can't spend more time at home because I'm needed at the office.

Is that so? Have you discussed working from home a little more with your manager? Have you considered cutting out other activities so you can be home more? (Is work the only thing keeping you from home? I doubt it!)

The thing is, you've been telling yourself the story for so long it feels true. In which case, it's best to start dissecting the story in a rational manner.

If you get rid of the negative thought, the negative feelings soon leave as well.

2. You're totally unteachable. You may or may not be an old dog, but one thing's for sure: You're not learning any new tricks.

Ie, you're stubborn. You'd rather be conflicted and unhappy.

Hey, whatever works!

But seriously - if there's something you "can't do":

Isn't it time to start telling yourself a different story?

One where you can do it?

Maybe you need a friend or loved one to help you write this story; that's okay.

The point is to start telling the story where you're the hero - not the victim.

1 comment

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