'What if I go for something and I don't get it?'
'What if I spend all of my hours trying to make this work and it doesn't go as planned?'
'What if I'd gone travelling like I'd said I wanted to.....?'
'What if I'd gone for that job promotion?'
'What if I'm not good enough...?'
'What if I regret my decision?'
What if....what if....what if......
A 'what if' thrown into a sentence immediately makes us gaze into the future, but more often than not it's tinged with fear and failure. It surrounds itself with all of the possibilites of what could go wrong. These thoughts then flood our mind and we end up talking ourselves out of an idea or plan before we've even begun.
When we then use the 'what if' when looking back longingly on actions and decisions we didn't make in our lives, it then translates into; 'shoulda, coulda, woulda.'
'I could have been an architect but I didn't think I was going to make the grades needed to get onto the course'
'I should have gone for that job interview, it could've been that promotion that would've changed the entire trajectory of my career'
I would have been the best at it by a long shot...but I was scared of not living up to expectation, so I passed it up and let it go'
It's easy to blame the unknown.
Thats where all of Your Dreams hang out.
Your Dreams can end up being in the unknown for a few months, years, or even for your entire life. It's the same story for so many in the same situation, and it's all because we're too worried about having a chat with the burly bouncers at the door about what needs to be done to be allowed in. Once you're get through that door and inside you can start rubbing shoulders with Your Dreams and get better acquainted.
These bouncers want to ask you endless questions to find out if you're suitable to enter, and because they're so big and looking down on you, you decide that you don't live up to what's expected and instead back away from them slowly.
On the occasion when you do manage to get into the room you look over to where Your Dreams are hanging out in the VIP area, and they're surrounded by what looks like another five strong deep circle of security.
From afar you've already made a judgement call that this is going to be too difficult because you've already said to yourself;
- Why would I go all the way over there to try and introduce myself potentially to get turned away and be made to look stupid?
- What if I go over there and make a fool of myself?
- What makes me so special that I would be allowed in the VIP area anyway?
So you have a quick drink, tell yourself the whole thing has been a waste of time and make a beeline for the door. Just as you're about to leave you take one last turn to look at Your Dreams and you suddenly notice sat right next to them is Someone Else's Dreams, and sat inbetween them both is Someone Else.
They're sat right where you want to be!
Before you know it you're staring over at them all enviously chatting away and laughing and becoming best of friends, and that well known phrase makes an appearance in your head...
'What if....I had just done what that Someone Else had just done? What if I'd just tried and given it a shot and worked out a way to get in?
You now have a choice - stay and try and take a shot at getting through into the VIP area yourself and the potential risks that entails - or take the safe option and head out the door and back to the life you've been living, the one that you know.
You choose the latter and before you know it you're walking home angry at yourself as now your 'what if' has turned into a 'that could have been me, I could have....if....' comment.
Why Am I Sharing This With You?
Even though our basis for staying comfortable in what we know and being secure has its benefits, one thing is clear. If you're wanting to make a change in your life, although it is good to have an air of caution and to acknowledge what could go right and wrong and make some contingency plans, sitting long-term in the negatives of 'what if's' can be paralysing. It's generally not the place from which solid steps of progress and decisions towards what you really want are made.
It only takes those two words of 'what if' for you to go from a place of certainty in action, to one of unsurety, indecisiveness and inaction. It's the fertile ground in which the limiting beliefs we hold about ourselves love to grow and blossom.
So here's a question........what if you stopped saying 'what if'?
What if you removed the negatives of 'what if' from your vocabulary?
How would this affect your mindset?
What do you believe is now possible?
What do you believe you can go on to achieve?
What will you go and now make happen?
Some food for thought....
*If you would like information on the Business & Personal Coaching services that I offer and pricings, please do go to my Coaching Services page or email me via my Contact page.
P.s: The world is yours.
So is the unknown.
So are your dreams.
'Shoot for the moon, even if you miss you'll land among the stars'