Impossible is a word used a lot. I feel it’s used too much to be honest. It’s used to indicate
that a thing can’t be done or can’t be achieved, but it’s also used by people to describe their inability to achieve a goal. We could go all ‘self-help-positive-mindset‘ on this and try to deny that there aren’t situations that that do look impossible at first glance, however, let me share something you may not yet know about how to turn this everyday phrase into an powerful tool you can use anytime you want to.
Gary, an intern at a major corporation in downtown Chicago, was in his junior year in college. This was his second time at interning with this organization and I just happened to be working there at the time too. He was assigned to me so I could mentor him on areas of finance. While having a chat with Gary to find out how he felt about the opportunity to intern with the company a second time, he said “I feel like everything they ask me to do is impossible.”
“Why is that?” I asked him.
“Last time I was here I messed things up really bad, and now I’m here again, I’m already afraid things will be even worse” Gary said.
“How do you know that to be true?” I responded.
“Well, just because” he replied.
“Because of what?” I asked.
“Because of last time” Gary replied. “I made so many mistakes I felt like I wasn’t going to be able to come in one particular day, because of the mess I made the previous day.”
I could tell that he was concerned, but at the same time, the fact was, Gary had been invited back a second time, so there must be a hidden purpose beneath everything.
“Look Gary” I said, “You got invited back again this year, so something must have worked in your favor.” He pondered for a moment, looked down at the floor then looked up at me and said “I guess.”
“Okay” I said, “What’s really going to help you this time around is that attitude you take. You got invited back so it means there are things you did that the company liked. Those and other things that you can do well are what you should focus on, and I’ll help you make the impossible possible.”
“And how’re you going to do that?” Gary asked.
“I’m not doing it,” I said “you are. What I want you to do is separate yourself from the things you do because those things don’t define you.‘ I went on to say. “I want you to remind yourself that you might mess things up, but those things and you are not one and the same. Can you do that?”
“Sure” he said.
“Okay, the ‘trick‘” I
explained, “Is to remind yourself each morning as you get out of bed, remind yourself that you can do well on this internship and in anything you choose to, and all I want you to say to yourself each morning as you start your day is one sentence.”
“What’s that?” he asked.
“Say to yourself at the
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