Back in elementary school when I still lived in Germany we had an annual sports competition. One of the tasks was to climb up a rope and hold on to it for as long as you can. 23 kids (the whole class) climbed the rope and held on to it. One kid after the other dropped.
Finally, there were only two people left: Anna and myself. My arms felt like they were on fire and my brain started telling me: You can´t do it any longer. I focused on the burning pain in my arms and the thought: I can´t do it anymore. I have to let go.
I let go of the rope first. Within an instance of a second Anna let go too.
Anna said to me:" I could not have done it even one second longer. I only managed to hold on to the rope for so long because I imagined I would stay in that position forever and I smiled. My mind told me: You cannot hold on to that rope any longer. I told my mind: "Ok, I understand. Anyway!""
The power of the word a n y w a y felt enormous. And even over 30 years later it still tickles me pink that I let go that instance of a second too fast. I did not have enough faith in myself and it was just my thoughts that prevented me from winning.
You see, at the point when your mind tells you "you cannot do it" - you still can.
I implemented what Anna told me and ever since I always give it that "extra second" when I feel I cannot achieve something or I am lacking the strengths to carry on.
One of the tasks of your brain is to take care of you, make sure that you are safe and survive. It also attempts to keep us in our comfort zone.
I, for instance, had the dream for many years to start my own business, start writing and become a coach (versus a sales manager). For the longest time, I did not dare. Then I relocated to the United States and it seemed like the chance in a lifetime as I had to start all over again.
I felt conflicted. On one hand I really wanted to, on the other there was the fear and the doubts. "But you are not a native speaker, how can you coach people with broken English." "It is financially insecure. Do something you know you get a check every month".
Then I remembered that little word. Anyway. And I remembered how I back then in the sports competition did not achieve what I was capable off just because I did not believe in myself.
And I smiled and said to myself: "Anyway. You have something to offer. And even though your English is not perfect people will know that you care and find the value of what you are offering even with a few grammar mistakes. And you WILL enjoy every minute of the ride."
Examples like this can be found in my personal as well as my professional life. And I am sure that´s the case for you too.
It can be something as small as "I am too tired to do this task now." And every time the memory of he small word knocks shyly: "Anyway", together with the positive experience from doing what I thought I could not do.
Doing something anyway. Even though you or someone else does not believe you can. That´s a great way to outsmart our brain and try something new.
We will gain new experience and skills and learn over and over again: We CAN do more than we think. We can do even more than we dared to dream.
Don´t get me wrong. I am not saying it´s all about winning. I do say that it´s all about trying and challenging yourself. Time and again you will learn that you can do so much more than you thought.
Anyway. A small word with soooo much power!
For me and maybe for you?
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