6 Steps to Living in Possibility

6 Steps to Living in Possibility

by Michael Pollock

As I sit down to write this article, Winter Storm Emily is causing quite a “stand-still” here in the New England states. Meteorologists are predicting up to two feet of snow in some areas, like here in Connecticut.

I went into work this morning only to discover we wouldn’t be opening due to the pending storm. In fact, many businesses and public departments have closed their doors in preparation for Emily.

Essentially, the entire northeastern corner of the U.S. is paralyzed, based only upon an educated – although fairly technological – prediction.

It made me think how often we become paralyzed by the much-less-educated predictions we make for our own lives. You know the predictions I’m talking about.

They sound like this: “That will never work.” “I could never do that.” “I know this isn’t going to be easy.” “She/he won’t go out with me. She/he is out of my league.” “I couldn’t start a business. I don’t know anything about business.”

What makes you do this?

It’s a defense mechanism. You’re preparing for the worst, whether it’s two feet of snow, failing in business, being turned down for a date or failing in any new endeavor.

Guess what? Your predictions are usually accurate (unlike many of the meteorologists’). Your predictions are accurate because you usually don’t even take the first step.

“If I’m fairly certain I’ll fail, why even try, right?”

To that question, I say you’re absolutely correct. If you are predicting failure, don’t bother. But understand, that’s a choice you’re making. You’re choosing to predict failure.

Am I suggesting you charge into every new endeavor with an expectation of overwhelming success? Not exactly, because expectation tends to set you up for a potential disappointment.

Consider living from a place of possibility rather than prediction or expectation. Further, consider that every possibility is a gift in itself. Yes, even failure is a gift if you embrace it as a vehicle for learning rather than a determinant of your own worth. As Henry Ford said, “failure is the opportunity to begin again, more intelligently.”

So, what does it mean to live in possibility, and how do you do it?

First, living in possibility simply means anything can happen if you – as Thoreau said – “advance confidently in the direction of your dreams.”

Here’s a simple 6 step process to use the possibility approach in any endeavor (write these on paper or in your journal):

Step 1 – Declare your intention for the endeavor. What’s the reason you’re doing it? Perhaps you’re doing it as an expression of service. Maybe you’re doing it to earn money. Perhaps the intention is to learn something new. You may have more than one intention, which is fine, but decide at the outset what you intend to personally gain and/or give to others.

Step 2 – Determine what would be the worst possible outcome. If nothing went your way and your endeavor failed miserably, what would it look like. Write out a description of the failure in as much detail as possible.

Step 3 – Determine the potential gift in your worst possible outcome. What might you learn or how might you grow if your endeavor is a complete bust?

Step 4 – Determine what would be the best possible outcome. If everything worked out perfectly and your endeavor was totally successful, what would that look like? Again, write out a detailed description.

Step 5 – Release your attachment to any outcome whatsoever. This is the crucial step. Simply accept that anything can happen. In the words of A.L. Williams, “All you can do is all you can do.” The rest is out of your hands.

Step 6 – Take the first step and have fun. Now that you got all that failure and success stuff out of the way, just go play the game 100%, like when you were a kid. Have fun with it and don’t take life so seriously.

The next time you feel yourself getting caught up in predicting your future or setting high expectations for yourself, try using this six step possibility process. It should you keep moving forward in a consistent and enjoyable manner.

It’s your life. Make it great!


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About the author

Pretium lorem primis senectus habitasse lectus donec ultricies tortor adipiscing fusce morbi volutpat pellentesque consectetur risus molestie curae malesuada. Dignissim lacus convallis massa mauris enim mattis magnis senectus montes mollis phasellus.

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