His name is Mr. Wasted Potential. He pokes me in the middle of the night asking, “Will you….
Live out your full potential.
My new washing machine really does a great job. I have new detergent and fabric softener and they both smell so good. Sometimes I am so very aware of how they smell, of how cozy the bed is and it’s usually when I wake up in the wee early morning hours.
You know what time I am talking about? That time when you wonder if your alarm is getting ready to go off and should you even bother trying to fall back to sleep. And sometimes it really is just before you are supposed to get out of bed and start the day.
And other times, it’s because the boogeyman wakes you up.
My boogeyman’s name is Mr. Wasted Potential. He likes to wake me up at 2:12 a.m. I never really understand how he wakes me up, but he does. And then the whispering begins.
That morning time, you know the one, sometimes they call it the witching hour, sometimes they call it the most creative time of day…I think of it when Mr. Wasted Potential and I have to have a real conversation, a Sally Come to Jesus kind of a conversation. The kind of conversation that brings those huge, monumental AHA’S!!
I have to work very hard to remember Mr. Wasted Potential is there as a guide. As a reminder of all the amazing things I am capable of.
He sounds scary, the words he says often trigger my deepest fears that I will be judged for who I am. That I will not live out my calling. That I will not sing my soul song. That I will not do whatever it is I am here to do on this planet at this very moment in time. That no one will listen to me. That I’m not really a great mama. That I’m not really a fantastic wife. That I’m really a sucky friend. That no one will hire me, buy my stuff….that somehow the work I do doesn’t really matter.
Constantly, yes, constantly pushing the “what if” at me. And the “what if” is always followed by something bad.
Yeah, I guess I could think of Mr. Wasted Potential is the holder of all my mental baggage. The stuff I have carried around for years. The “I’m not good enough” bullshit.
And I know, so many women have their own Mr. Wasted Potential who pops up at various times of day, or at various stages of their lives to haunt them.
Fortunately, one of the things I have learned, and let me again say a big—THANK GOD-–was that when ole W.P. shows up, it’s a real sign I am growing.
I am pushing my limits.
I am actually in the process of living my full potential.
I am stretching.
I am evolving.
I am in the middle of my own REVOLUTION!
And that helps me not be afraid, or sad, or anxious or worried.
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So now, when ole W.P. wakes me from my deep, seriously needed slumber, I allow the Sally Come to Jesus deep conversation to happen. I wake up. I open my eyes and
I ask, “What do you need to tell me, W.P.?”
I have a journal next to my bed and even in my groggy state, I jot down those notes, those statements, those ideas that he shares with me. And in the morning I allow myself to look at those comments with a KNOWING truth may very well be in there.
If he says, “Your ideas aren’t going to resonate with anyone.” I think about what proof there is with that. I allow myself to REMEMBER, the good comments I have gotten from people, the results I help people with.
I evaluate what came up as a LIE or a TRUTH or SOMETHING TO EXPLORE.
When I detach from the emotions of fear, or worrying about judgement, or other negative “what ifs”, then I can understand if there is a message I need to act on, or if this is just part of the process of self-growth!
Self-growth can be painful, and that is a truth. Click To Tweet
Just because we stretch and move through the fear and maybe, just maybe want to fully avoid it… doesn’t mean it isn’t 100% worth it.
But back to the LIE, or TRUTH or SOMETHING TO EXPLORE, this is a process you could take on. You could have your own Sally Come to Jesus moment…those moments where you have to really be real with yourself, no more hiding.
No more hiding from yourself or others. And isn’t that what living out our potential is really about? Not HIDING.
There seems to be areas of awareness women need to embrace to allow themselves to actually talk with their own boogeyman.
And the most obvious is, that we need to look within. The BOOGEYMAN comes from within. And when we turn away from it, when we deny it, when we try to squish down those fears and feelings and worries, we are truly missing out on the potential that lies within those very things.Click To Tweet
When we are on that DRIVEN quest to FIX ourselves, we forget to look within. We have the answers. Now granted, that doesn’t mean we always want to look at them. But there has to come a day when you stop seeking outside of yourself to find the magic answer. Why the constant trying to fix ourselves?
Are we good enough? What if we are good enough….but that doesn’t negate the fact we want more in life. How about coming from a place of granting yourself permission to want more. And if you want more, and you are working “so” hard and not getting what you want…hey, this is a sign. A big red flag…something needs to change.
And once you listen….you must take ACTION! Mr. Wasted Potential usually does NOT show up when I am in proud of the actions I am taking to move forward in life.
He seems to just show up when I am stalled. Stuck. Procrastinating. Self-sabotaging. Hesitating. Playing the victim. Blaming.
There are people out there who poo-poo comments like, LIVE UP TO YOUR POTENTIAL Clearly, I disagree. I believe we KNOW deep within when we are capable of more. It’s just sometimes we don’t know how to bring it out. We have our own blindspots. And if you are here, Dear Reader, than you know you have more within. And isn’t that exciting! You are more than you are in this moment.
Isn’t that what life is all about….growing?
Mr. Wasted Potential is really the victim mentality I seek to constantly shed.
Because honestly, sometimes I really don’t want to grow. Sometimes I really wish someone would ride in and say, “No, Mary, you don’t have to do it.” Sometimes I wish my husband would say…”Just be a stay at home mama.”
And it is in those very moments that I can feel, inside myself, Mr. Wasted Potential smiling.
Because he claims victory. He is smiling because I am feeding him. He consumes my fears of wasting my potential and it gives him strength.
And it is in those very moments, I remember I must choose to be bold, brave, courageous, daring to continue to move forward on my show up growth journey.
Live out your full potential
and I will live out mine….because I know….
At the end of my days, I am sure I am just like you, we want to feel like what we say and do means something to the world, even if it is just our small part of the world.
At the end of my days, I am sure I am just like you, we want to feel like this precious gift of life and those amazing gifts we have within were shared.
At the end of my days, I am sure I am just like you, we want to feel like we went for it, we overcame our fears, we did what we were here to do.
At the end of my days, I am sure I am just like you, we want to feel like we don’t regret our missed opportunities but instead took action and grabbed each one with zeal.
At the end of my days, I am sure I am just like you, we want to know our boogeyman didn’t have the ultimate control over us, we did.
And that will make us PROUD. I am sure I am just like you, I want to be proud of how I spent my life.
But….hey, wait a minute. This living out your full potential…our full potential…isn’t so JUST at the end of our lives we feel proud!!
It is so we can enjoy the rewards of our effort! It is so we can see with our very own eyes the fruits of our labor! it is so we can hear with our very own ears the thank you’s and good job’s! It is so we can live out the big, bold life and have all the money we want, or help all the people we want, or write all the books we want, or travel to all the places we want…. deciding we are committed to living out our full potential can happen in an instant!
Change does happen in an instant!
And as we grow, we get to enjoy this, feel great about ourselves, relish in our strength! It’s time to…
Live out your full potential
Here are a few BOLD actions to take:
#1: Decide, right now, right here, Dear Reader, that you CHOOSE to grow even if it is scary. You choose to KNOW it’s going to work out. You choose to be OPTIMISTIC. You are going to allow yourself to take itty bitty steps, to BUILD on your self trust, your self confidence and see how you are amazing. (when you stop letting yourself down, and follow through on what you promise to yourself, even itty bitty steps, you are building a strong SELF trust foundation. I know you need it, you have probably let yourself down before, me, too.)
Come hell or high water, you WILL squeeze all the juice out of life!! You will show up!! You know it will work out!! The Universe is for you!
#2: Buy a little journal for next to your bed to jot down those middle of the night MR. WP conversations. (and another tip on this, use a notes app on your phone to speak your ideas so you don’t lose them, when you get home you could print them out, paste them into your journal and review…or paste them into a blog post, or social media post and show UP and share)
#3: Examine your ideas based on: TRUTH, LIE or SOMETHING TO EXPLORE.
If it is the TRUTH, what plan can you develop and what action can you take to change that….IF needed?
If it is a LIE, what plan can you develop and what action can you take to change that…IF needed?
If it is SOMETHING TO EXPLORE…how can you give yourself some time to dive deeper? Do you have someone you who can help you examine this?