February 15, 2011

Believe in Yourself and Your Mission

Day 46: 27.3 miles/1:37

“To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.” ~Anatole France

Last night I had the pleasure of dinner and a cigar with my good friend Michael Goodman.  We all have and need mentors, advisors, and friends who teach, inspire, and kick in the ass when needed.  Michael is one of my trusted, reliable resources for all the above.  When Michael and I get together, the philosophical discussions are deep and intense.  He certainly qualifies one of the few men I know who can look at an obvious answer and decide that knowing the answer is not enough – he needs to know how it is so and why it is so.  For a person like me who loves to find the answer and move on to the next question, Michael’s intellectual approach is both enlightening and mind rattling.

At one point in the evening Michael began engaging our server about her love of yoga.  As always, Michael did a great job of discovering what she loved about yoga, the energy it provided, and the process of getting to that place of “nothingness” that she relishes so much from the experience.  Armed with enough information to be dangerous, Michael began to try to get her to explore the possibility of getting to that place without having to do yoga.  What we discovered was that she was firmly entrenched in the notion that it was impossible to even consider the possibility of finding that kind of peace through any other process than the yoga class.  The more Michael offered “what if?” questions, the more rigid and defensive she became about her position and her beliefs.  It got to the point she was merely re-defending her stance without engaging in the remotest thought about the possibilities of creating a different way to get to the same place.

Sometimes what we believe in can get in the way of our ability to grow and be successful.  However, what we believe about ourselves, our sense of worth and value, and our mission can and does influence our accomplishments.  What we believe is possible or not possible will determine how far we will explore going beyond our traditional boundaries.  As exemplified by the conversation with the server, she was so determined to limit her perspective to what she believed was absolute and true, that she never explored the conversation of what is possible.

Discovering what is possible is believing there is always an opportunity for us to explore, learn, and succeed at something we did not know we were capable of.  If we start out with the self-limiting belief that we can’t do that or that it cannot be done, that is where we end up –right where we stand.  However, when we explore what is possible with the confidence and belief in ourselves we can accomplish things that were not previously predictable or expected.  Stand by your beliefs, unless those beliefs are preventing you from exploring new and exciting horizons.  And, always believe in yourself – for success starts and ends there.

About Dave Cooke

Dave Cooke is a dad on a mission. His mission is to help parents get control of their lives over the powerful, destructive influences of a child's addiction. As the father of a son in a ten year heroin battle, Dave knows all to well the challenges parents and families face. He also knows there is a way to find peace in the chaos. It is his mission to help parents discover their path to a healthier, balanced life even if a child's active addiction is still part of their daily journey.