Legend has it that Michelangelo could stare at a rough slab of rock and see a beautiful statue inside. His job, therefore, was one of freeing the beauty within rather than creating something anew. He would take his tools, chip away at all the imperfections and smooth the rough edges until a glorious statue stood for the world to behold.
People would marvel at his work and ask him how he was able to create something of such beauty. He would reply that he had created nothing; he’d simply released the greatness that already existed.
You see, you’ve always been perfect. You are that beautiful statue irrespective of whether you’re standing free or covered by four tonnes of rock. Inside you are all the skills, intelligence and capacity to learn necessary to live a happy, fulfilled and exciting life. Regardless of your present situation, your health, how many times you’ve failed in the past or how depressed you feel, that statue is alive inside you and it is your essence. It can’t be crushed, lost or taken from you. It will always be with you, whether you choose to let it show or not.
But what’s the rock?
This is where it gets interesting. Why do most people never live a life equal to their potential?
We all have this deeper knowing that we could be living a much greater life than the one we presently live, yet are frustrated in our efforts to attain it.
The answer is that there’s something blocking our greatness. Like the rock surrounding the statue, our greatness gets smothered by the system.
The system conceals our statue by;
All of this conditioning prevents us from realising that we, and our lives, could be GREAT.
Think about it, the focus of most people’s lives is not how to realise every ambition they’ve ever had and experience as much of life as possible; it’s simply to ‘get by’. We don’t set our sights higher because we don’t believe that lifelong happiness and fulfilment are possible. And we don’t believe they’re possible because the system has taught us that the world doesn’t work that way.
I’m pissed off about this situation. It’s why I started this website. Why can’t the world be a happy place, filled with inspired people enjoying their lives and using their gifts for the benefit of all?
I believe it can and in my small attempt to make this a reality, I want to use my expertise to help you discover your greatness.
So read on and discover the 3 secrets that will enable you to reveal your statue to the world.
Your greatness needs an outlet to flourish. We haven’t come through thousands of years of evolution to be sitting in an office stressed, bored out of our brains and wondering about the purpose of our lives. Each and every one of us has something inspiring to contribute to the world, that once we find, will bring immense joy and meaning to our lives.
But how do we find it?
A recent study indicates that only 19% of employees in the US and Canada are satisfied with their jobs. It’s clear that the system’s model of studying hard at school and college, following our parents’ wishes, copying what our friends and peers are doing and listening to career’s advisors isn’t working.
We need a radical rethink on navigating our way through life and it starts with identifying our driving force. Let me explain.
When you follow the system’s model you are driven by two main forces; security and financial reward. Of course, other factors are important but the main focus is what’s going to bring you the greatest amount of money for the smallest risk (It’s why people following the system’s path don’t end up mega rich, only ‘system rich’, because they’re too afraid of the risks associated with starting their own business or becoming a master at a creative endeavour). Security is just as important as money when you live by the system’s rules and it tends to lead to a safe and comfortable life but at the cost of compromising your individuality, desires and freedom.
I’m challenging you to reject this model. To truly find your passion you have to make inspiration your driving force. You have to pursue what brings the greatest amount of joy and reward into your life irrespective of money.
Now I understand this might seem unrealistic advice given that we appear to live in a world dominated by the need to have money. However, it would be inaccurate to assume that living an inspiration driven life will lead to poverty. In fact, it’s making this switch that gives you the opportunity to make enough money to claim your financial freedom. Think about it, inspiration is the force that enables people to create the greatest inventions and products, give amazing performances and make profound discoveries. It’s what enables you to lift your head above the uninspired masses and perform to such a level that people will pay for your expertise.
With this in mind, you will need to tune into your feelings to find your passion. They will reveal the path, and every subsequent step along the journey, you need to take. Be true to them. Don’t let the system tell you that what you love isn’t cool or impossible to make a living out of. Blogging and YouTube channels didn’t exist over 10 years ago and now thousands of people are making money through them. Inspiration can always be monetized.
A decision to reject the system’s path and follow your passion is an empowering, yet at the same time scary, move. While most people follow a well-trodden path through life, you are forging your own. The one quality you’re going to need on this journey, above all else, is confidence. And not just any old form of confidence, it needs to be big balled super-hero confidence.
But how to develop it when we’re raised in a system which leads us to believe the individual is weak and powerless to affect change?
For most of us, confidence is something we have to build. From adolescence the system conditions us into conformity and the underlying message is that we’re not strong enough to stand alone. You have to reverse this conditioning. You have to have the confidence to walk into any situation and know that your voice will be heard, your idea recognised or your outcome achieved.
While the internet is awash with magic elixirs on how to build confidence, there is only one true method. You have to put yourself through the rigors of facing your fears. One by one, you must undertake the tasks that fill you with dread, approach the people you feel nervous to meet and embrace the opportunities that force you out of your comfort zone. This is the path to super-hero confidence. Through a process of exposing yourself to your fears and then proving to yourself that you can get through them, your confidence slowly grows as you become desensitsed to the challenge and discover your incredible ability to adapt to whatever situation you’re faced with.
So get excited the next time you feel that fear because it’s a golden opportunity. And remember, there’s no turning back. People become great because other people believe in them. There’s no way this can happen unless you believe in yourself.
The final secret to discovering your greatness is developing the ability to let go. But what does this mean?
All of the above. You can’t be great with mental sewage floating around in your mind. The energy you live with is the most important thing in your life. In fact, it determines everything.
Some of sciences greatest minds (Einstein, Planck) have theorised that matter is not as real as the system would have us believe. Far from our reality being fixed, solid and largely unchangeable, it is shaped, and responds to, our energy. To quote Max Planck directly, ‘All matter originates and exists by virtue of a force . . . We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind. This mind is the matrix of all matter.’
Understanding this truth flips your world on its head. No longer are we the powerless victims of chance, stuck in a uncaring system, doomed to play out the role society has been preparing us for since birth. Instead, we are the creators and architects of our own reality. Through the energy we live with, the thoughts we entertain and the subsequent choices and actions we take, we play the lead role in determining the way the world responds to us.
This is why developing the ability to Let Go is so important to discovering your greatness. A clear mind, unfettered by fears, stresses and regrets, is free to manifest the future it desires.
Attaining this state takes practise. Reminding yourself to Let Go whenever you find your thoughts focusing on the latest argument you had with your boyfriend or girlfriend, your hang ups and insecurities or the trivialities of the day, is a true mental discipline.
Master it, and there is little you won’t be able to direct your mind towards achieving. Let your mind master you and you’ll find your attempts to realise your greatness forever frustrated by what seems like a power beyond your control.
(1st image taken from Stoic Meditation photostream flickr.com)
(2nd image taken from Symphony of Love photostream flickr.com)
(3rd image taken from Bohman photostrem flickr.com)
(4th image taken from Admitchell08 photostream flickr.com)