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Not Everything Is Possible

Photo credit: www.postscapes.com

Photo credit: www.postscapes.com

You've probably heard versions of it your whole life:

If you believe in yourself, nothing is impossible.

You can do anything if you set your mind to it.

But, no.

The sentiment may sound inspirational, but it's not true. I would argue it's not even helpful.

No matter how much you wish or believe or work, some things will always be out of reach. Collin will not be a downhill skier. I will not be a pop icon. None of us will walk on Venus. 

So why do we feel the need to declare that boundaries aren't real, that limitations don't exist? 

I think it's because we tend to value having more than trying. Accomplishments are admirable and fulfilling. Right? But if you work hard for something and don't get it, where is the glory in that?

You might say I'm contradicting my own Maybe Method here, but I don't think so. The Maybe Method is all about pushing boundaries. It's about the freedom to try, not the inevitability of succeeding. It acknowledges that some things are impossible while encouraging you to discover which are not. As an example, let's look at the question: Will Collin walk without assistance one day?

If I claim that anything is possible, the pressure is on. Not only is the outcome on the line, so is our character. If Collin doesn't achieve the goal, it's because we didn't believe enough, he didn't want it badly enough or work hard enough for it. 

But if not everything is possible, I can answer the question with a heartfelt "maybe," which frees us up to explore. Instead of making life about success or failure, a "maybe" makes life all about possibilities.