I have a running joke with some of my friends. You might have a similar one.
We imagine what we’d do if we won the lottery.
We dream about how we would spend all that money. We talk about how many problems we could solve with our winnings. But then someone will state the obvious…
“Don’t you have to buy a lottery ticket to have a chance at winning the lottery?”
We all smile. None of us wants to spend the money on a lottery ticket. But it sure is fun to dream about what would happen if we won the thing.
Do you see the disconnect (I guess that’s what makes it a joke to us)? You can’t win the lottery unless you buy a ticket.
I know a lot of people who dream about making a difference or enjoying an adventure. They want to get involved. They aspire to do great things. They want to accomplish something significant. But they’re frozen behind a wall.
“Wouldn’t it be great if…”
“If only I could…”
“I can’t wait to…”
Do you see what’s happening here? All they’re doing is imagining what it would be like to win the lottery without buying a lottery ticket. They can’t move forward until they move past this barrier…a barrier of their own making.
Every single one of us faces this barrier. It has a lot of symptoms but only one remedy. And it’s masked by all kinds of motives.
Sometimes it’s motivated by fear.
Sometimes it’s motivated by doubt.
Sometimes it’s motivated by fatigue.
Sometimes it’s motivated by ignorance.
Sometimes it’s motivated by complacency.
Whatever the motivation, it stops us cold. The barrier is the unwillingness to try.
The Unwillingness To Try
Until you can overcome your unwillingness to try, you will never know what you can accomplish or achieve. Does this surprise you? All I am asking you to do is to try. So simple. Yet you can probably come up with one hundred reasons why you won’t.
As we grow older we lose our willingness to try. Children jump at the chance to try. But with age comes the wariness of trying. Because we trade trying for certainty. We want to know for sure that trying will turn out in our favor. Unfortunately, you can’t be certain how things will turn out…not until you try.
It’s time you pushed back against your fear, your doubt, your fatigue, your ignorance, or your complacency. It’s time to try. It’s time to take the very next step that’s necessary to do the thing you want to do. You learned to walk by trying to walk. You learned to ride a bike by trying it. It’s time to stop thinking about it, dreaming about it, hoping for it, and wishing it would happen. It’s time to try.
Every great success began with an attempt by someone. Somebody tried something. The success came after the attempt. The person who tries realizes there’s something more devastating than failure.
If you try and fail, then you’ll know…and you’ll learn. But if you never try…you’ll never know…and you’ll wonder what might have been.
In the comments: What is it that keeps you from trying?