From early in my years I was taught that I can’t means I won’t and in ways different from what I thought, I have discovered this little piece of wisdom to be a very powerful metaphysical truth. What I came to discover is that it means, I won’t because I have limited my belief in myself.
Every single time you say, “I can’t,” especially with any amount of enthusiasm you are investing in your limitations. You are convincing yourself of a reality that is unwarranted.
Building the discipline to monitor what you say BEFORE you say it is important. Allowing this habit of saying, I can’t, to go unnoticed and unmonitored paves the way for you to believe that you are powerless. NOW, if you are a parent or grandparent, stay aware; you do not want to model this limiting behavior around your young ones. If your children and grandchildren have already picked this habit up from their surroundings, do everything you can to interrupt this habit without criticizing. The simplest way to interrupt this habit in a young person is to look at them and simply say, “Of course you can.” I often say to my grandchildren and adults alike who are believing in their limitation, “I believe in you, of course you can do it.” Sounds a bit simplistic, maybe, but ask yourself, how often did anyone say that to you growing up and what if they had?
Don’t believe it? Try this as an experiment:
To begin, buy a journal or just a small notepad and every time you hear yourself say the words I can’t, track it in your book.
After catching yourself in the moment, tune into yourself, your body, and see how it feels to say those words. Are they empowering to you or depressing to your spirit? Are you left feeling optimistic or pessimistic?
Now that you have become mindful about this habit, ask yourself this, “What if when I say I can’t, I could?” Just ponder that. What if you could or what if there was a variation for accomplishing this thing.
Do this for at least 21 days in a row and see how you begin to feel. See if you are more optimistic and hopeful.
Either way, cease saying and believing that you can’t. That is lazy thinking and will only serve to hold you down. When in doubt remember the story of the little train that could. You think it is only a children’s story – think again, and again, and again.