Are you paralyzed by keeping too many options open? It could be time to shut the back door.
My friend ‘Lisa’ is in the same line of work as I am but her business has never taken off. She loves her work and is extremely gifted. So why isn’t her business successful?
Because she’s never fully committed to it.
Instead Lisa runs her back up plans, just in case. She shares an office so she’s limited in how much time she can put into her business. To make up for this loss of potential income she waitresses and bar tends. If Lisa quit her side jobs, rented her own office, and put all her energy into the work she loves, she would experience the success that comes from whole-hearted commitment.
Because we’re afraid of failure, so often we keep other options open for “security.” But at what price?
When you split your focus, your back up plan acts like a vacuum, sucking away energy from what you want. You ensure the exact thing you want to prevent – failure.
I’ve heard about this concept being used in more serious life circumstances. Therapists use what’s called “creative hopelessness” as a method for talking people out of suicide.
The patient is asked to imagine a world in which suicide is not possible, simply not an option. When the hope of escape through suicide is closed off their creativity for embracing life and making the best of it is suddenly accessible. Only then can their mind begin to generate creative ideas for not just surviving, but thriving.
Here’s how can you use this concept in your own life and start experiencing success:
- Look at an area of your life in which you’re not experiencing the success you’d like. This could be anything from your marriage, to your career, to your health.
- Identify your back doors. Be brutally honest with yourself. For example, if your marriage isn’t working, are you keeping divorce or an affair in the back of your mind as an escape route?
- Now, imagine your back door is simply not an option, what are you going to do? If divorce is no longer possible, are you going to stay miserable or take responsibility for creating the relationship you desire? If you can only make money in your business, what do you need to do to succeed? Trust me, when you have no other options, you’ll find a way.
I’m not suggesting you stay in an unhealthy marriage or a job you hate. And sometimes we need to bridge the gap in transitions, but eventually you have to make a choice, close all your back doors, and jump in.
So, if you’re in something, get in it. If you’re not, then get out.
Success comes to those who fully commit. Cheers to yours.