Friday, April 13, 2007

Challenge Your Limits

A favorite quote of mine is by a famous science fiction writer.

The only way of finding the limits of the possible is by going beyond them into the impossible. Arthur C. Clarke

It is so easy to just accept limits to what we can accomplish. The difference we could make in our lives or someone else's life. We can say to ourselves when I am established, when I am rich, when I ______, and we never start. But it does allow us to convince ourselves that we will when X happens. I don't know about you but I have found that today never works out to be what I imagined yesterday it would be.

Every Friday I do a limit check. This is the day I set a hour aside to remind myself how different my expectations were from what actual happened for the last week. How I handled the unexpected; did I do OK, did I blow it (lesson to be learned), did I just coast through the days; did I limit myself in some way from doing my best? Did I do anything towards my goals and why I did or did not?

It is an exercise I have found invaluable to me for challenging my own beliefs and limits. I find it also lessens my fears (False Evidence Appearing Real) by seeing first hand how true that statement is. We anticipate events or actions based on our assumptions of what will happen and the consequences. If our assumptions are at best a guess of what could happen and the result is bad for us and we believe that 100%; then, we will decide today not to risk it. If we understand that it is only one of the many possibilities and guesstimate a likelihood of it occurring as only 25% then we might attempt it and push our limits out. Now there are events that do have a 100% guaranteed result. Jumping in front of a moving Mack truck will get you hurt.

The trick is to build up our limit busting muscles starting with small nudges and as we get more confident to push a little harder and grow our ability to break out of our sandbox and live without some of our limits we have placed unnecessarily on ourselves.

How much better our lives would be and for anyone else who comes into contact with us.

When will you start your hour of power.

12 conversations:

Mike Crowl said...

Hour of Power, huh, Peter? One of those telly evangelists would be pleased that his phrase is getting into the language....LOL

Setting aside an hour each Friday sounds like a good thing, except that getting the discipline to do it is a bit of an issue. However, I used to get up early nearly every morning to spend time praying and reading the Bible, before the family woke, and carried this on for years. It's only in the last few months that I've got out of the habit because my circumstances have changed considerably. But it's the same sort of necessity: taking 'quiet time' out of the day improves a good number of things, including your mental health.

Peter Haslam said...

It is also used by Tony Robbins. In either case it seemed an appropriate use. I would be interested if you intend to return to your quiet time.

surjit said...

Quite motivating.A good post.Best wishes.

Peter Haslam said...

Thanks surjit

Comedy + said...

Ah...the fear factor. It's easy for us to talk ourselves out of something because of fear. Then there is the difficulty factor. Too hard! The lazy factor. The factors go on and on.

I have found that often what I feared turned out to be far easier than I had anticipated. This helps you with the next fear and so on.

Peter Haslam said...

Ah comedy+ there are times I think you should post and I would comment.
:) A good addition to the conversation.

Comedy + said...

Well Peter, you don't know my past. Perhaps someday I will share it with you. I have it hidden for many good reasons.

I am no expert in these matters, and have a strong opinion about those chasing the next feel good trend. All those feel-good snake-oil salesmen out there. I am not seeing that in you. I see you developing yourself in a human way. You question everything and that is a great attribute in your journey. You approach self growth in a realistic and positive way and I like that. Things like it's okay to make mistakes because it is human to do so.

I am too busy with silliness to be as deep as you are all the time. Perhaps I am just happy with my own personal development. I just don't know. I do know that I keep coming back here because you make sense to me and I truly enjoy the conversations :)

Peter Haslam said...

And comments like yours comedy+ keep me engaging in more conversations.

Rob Lundy said...

Peter, I found your blog on google, I was feeling "numb" and sort of off track with my own happiness. I read it and the comments and immediately talked to one of my most trusted friends and setup a cooperative weekly thing, where we do something close to what you described. If common interests can be established, people can enter into cooperative relationships to help each other reach the goals. This will help us both be more disciplined about everything as well as view things from different angles.

Peter Haslam said...

Thank you for your thoughts Rob

Elbert West said...

Peter, I just found your blog and really enjoyed reading "Challenge your limits" and "When stuck on a problem". We have a lot in common when it comes to our approach to life. I'll be back soon. Keep up the good writing!

Peter Haslam said...

Thank you Elbert and welcome to the conversation