“We can rise above our limitations only once we recognize them”
– B.K.S. Iyengar
I have “stolen” this quote from a friend of mine who put it on her blog, asking the question: “Have you discovered unconscious limitations that have prevented you from reaching your goals?” And what is there to answer other than yes? I think that everybody that reflects about their lives now and then has to admit that we put limitations to ourselves, both consciously and unconsciously. Sometimes the limitation is as simple as time. Every day we have 24 hours at our disposal, and for most people those hours are consumed by sleeping, eating, work, some time spent with family and maybe friends, and if there’s anything left it might be spent watching tv, reading a book or doing your hobby (whatever that might be). There’s not much time left for expanding our horizons, searching in ourselves for a deeper meaning of it all. We have limited time resources for travelling, and of course limited economical resources to wander off and explore the world. Or? I can be very academic here and say it’s all about a matter of defining the term “explore the world”. Most people, I guess, would instantly think I’m referring to a long journey to the most remote corners of the world in search for the meaning of life. And of course it can be. But it can also be in inner travel, a search in your dreams of things you would like to accomplish. It doesn’t have to be big dreams of fame and glory, but a skill you would like to develop, a travel you would really like to make.
I have discovered that I have plenty of limitations I have put for myself. And even if I have no more time than other people, it’s not really the time factor that concerns me or put the true limitation. It’s as simple as I am a coward. A big one that is. I’m simply afraid of failing, of making a fool of myself, but most of all I’m afraid of disappointing myself. In other words it’s very simple and incredibly silly. Why is it that we are so afraid of losing control now and then? What’s the worst that can happen? I dare say the worse than can happen is that I fall and perhaps I get bruised. It’s just to rise up! Make a lesson of it; experience gained, knowledge gained, try a different approach next time. What’s so bad about that?
After letting my cowardice prevent me from expanding my horizon and exploring the world and life itself for years I’ve gradually managed to overcome it. Alas, there is still a long way to go, but at least I know what’s the true reason keeping me from reaching my dreams, and that’s a good start. Sometimes it’s a hard battle to fight, but I find better and better weaponry to fight it as I go. Life has so many opportunities and it would be a pity to waste a lot of them due to cowardice.