The One Thing Most Likely to Limit You
The One Thing Most Likely to Limit You
What is it that everyone is looking for? Success and happiness. No matter what our goals and aspirations, what our beliefs, and what our faith, principles and philosophy, we are all searching for it. Recently I underwent a transformation that enabled me to appreciate life, pure and simple. This appreciation of life and everything in it has been a main factor in helping me change my habits and thoughts for the better. It is for that reason, that one of my life goals now is to help others to also learn to appreciate and make the most out of life. That is why I am starting this blog.
The first thing I wish to share with you is the "leap-of-faith" concept. It is the prerequisite for any positive life-change. In order for any such change to occur in our lives there needs to be a leap-of-faith - a first step in which we full-heartedly believe that something will help us - that is why we give it a go, we experiment and confirm or disconfirm our beliefs. Hence, absolutely every positive life change needs to have two parts, one is the leap-of-faith, and the other, a completely accurate analysis. One needs to not only try new things out in order to move forward, but also, after a certain time, recognize if they help or hinder ones’ development. Without this awareness and analysis it would be impossible to have sustainable improvement. And especially without this first part - the leap-of-faith - we would never achieve anything. I’m urging you for this leap-of-faith right now.
I want to devote the bigger part of this post to trying to further explain why I am writing this. It didn’t take me too long after I had come to my senses to realize that I wasn’t the exception, but the rule. Most of the people around me were acting like zombies. We have mostly become a detached world - even walking around in the streets it is very hard to see someone who hasn’t got his nose in his phone or who isn’t looking down and trying to shrink out of sight. I want to be a part of a society that is truly awake, filled with people who are completely aware of themselves and their surroundings. People who are happy and who are actively trying to make this world a better place. I want to devote this website to that purpose. I am writing this, because a couple of years ago I was confused and miserable, and I can imagine this is how some of you might be feeling. I now know how thankful I would’ve been if someone had snapped me out of my sorry state way earlier.
Several years ago I was on a path of self-destruction and degradation. I was not really experiencing life as much as coasting through it. Some of my all powerful Gods at the time were sloth and unreliability. I worshipped them fanatically and would’ve done everything to honor them. The honor of my most important God however, fell to my constant search for a means to escape from reality. Whether it was through some video game, through my attempts to conform with the other people around me and get them all to like me (losing myself in the process), or through substances that would elicit that effect, I was searching for detachment. Not until recently did I realize that I was looking for this feeling, because I was ashamed of what I had become - an empty vessel. I was scared to look at myself honestly and face the truth.
Hence, I was finding myself always in a state of sleeping through my life. Not only was I literally sleeping 12 to 15 hours a day, but I also had no goals, no desires, no motivation, no connection to others, or the world around me. I had no plans for the future, or ideas about how to achieve those plans. I was lacking a realistic perception of reality and of my own role in it. I was afraid of failure and hence I didn’t look towards starting anything that had even the remotest chance of failing - or the few things that I did try, were so obviously going to fail, that I was not in a position to feel embarrassed when they did. It would’ve been so absurd for them to work out, that it was like I never even really tried. I was also afraid of what people thought or would think of me, if I ventured to be myself - something I now realize to be absurd. At the time however, I didn’t even have a coherent understanding of those fears - they were simply living within me, yet unknown. Now I’d like to think that I am on a path to correcting all of these things and conquering my fears, which always has to be one of the first steps towards improvement.
It’s a very long story about how I reached the decision to start living, but for now it suffices to say that the bottom line was - my fears were pulling me back, although I couldn’t realize it at the time. They were the thing dragging me down. I see it much clearer now. I am still in the process of conquering fear - even posting this blog and sharing my thoughts is not something that comes easy. As you can see from my past anything that might cause others to think less of me is hard for me to do. However, this is for those who will appreciate what I am doing, and not for the those will laugh at it. Fear is ultimately the only thing with the power to pull you back, and ironically also one of the few things in life that you can control absolutely. It’s only ever as powerful as you let it be. Even back then I subconsciously knew that I needed to defeat my fears if I wanted to move forwards.
An example I can share with you about what I did to break the fear cycle and to show my brain that I will no longer allow fear to guide me, was going skydiving. I used to be terrified of heights. It probably came from my youth when I was living on the last floor of a very tall Soviet apartment block. I was looking out the window every day terrified of the distance between me and the ground, which was only magnified by how tiny I was. The memory of those days is almost gone, but that sense of trying to be tiny and not stick out - that sense persevered for a long time. Even being at the top of a modest building made my feet wobbly - when I used to go up hiking with my family in the mountain looking down a hill was enough to make me crouch and get close to the ground. But there was also something inexplicable driving me to it. Perhaps I subconsciously wanted it all to end or perhaps I was thinking this might finally jolt me into waking up. Whatever the reason, I somehow mustered the courage and I did it. Even though I was alone (since nobody I talked to was crazy enough to do it with me) I went in there and I signed up for the highest possible jump they had. I felt like I might have a heart attack all the way through and signing my life away right before jumping didn’t make things any easier. But I followed through and nothing could compare to how good falling down from 18000 feet felt. Trust me, nothing can compare to how good defeating your fears feels.
I will be the first to admit that of course, it was not specifically the fear of heights that was pulling me back. But it was that pattern of letting my fears control me, and doing something like this was the perfect way to break the pattern. I’m not trying to suggest that jumping out of an airplane will be the solution for you, if you feel disillusioned, just like I did. However, you must find your own way to begin to fight that pattern, since I guarantee it, 98% of us are under the influence of fear in one way or another and we might not even be realizing it. So go outside right now and do something that scares you. You might find it’s not so scary - or you might find it is much scarier than you thought, I am not making any promises. But just keep doing it, because it is the very act of doing it that matters. It is you taking back control of your brain.
Somehow life had sorted itself out for me thus far and I was under the impression that it would keep conveniently doing so, as if it owed me something.. but the truth is the world doesn’t owe any of us anything. Sooner of later most people get what they deserve, so go out there and deserve the good life that you want, one courageous step at a time.
With this blog, I want to speak to you from the position of a person who’s going through the process of change and knows how hard it is. I’ve made a lot of mistakes, but I’ve also learned through the process and I want to share them with you. We all learn from mistakes, but they don’t have to be our own.