“The size of your dreams must always exceed your current capacity to achieve them. If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough.”
― Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
This quote peaked my interest while “pinteresting” the other day. There are a multitude of feelings that may be provoked in reading this; various reactions and personal meanings that are evoked by those who ponder it. The interpretations, meaning and relevance of this quote likely vary from individual-to-individual. For me, this quote initially stimulated an anxiousness as I thought to myself, “Are my dreams big enough? If I am not afraid of my dreams, am I shorting myself, passing up or avoiding opportunities? If I am frightened by them, am I going to be able to rise-to-the-occasion, so to speak, to achieve them?” It can be easy to get caught up in a web of contemplation about the thoughts above, as well as many others. What I feel is the greatest take away from this quote is that our potential is much greater than we may tend to recognize.
Seeking safety, comfort, consistency, taking the “easy” way, etc… these are often the directions many of us strive for, wish to have, and seek out… to find our niche, our place in this world. However, this can close us down to challenging ourselves, limit our experiences, our joy and most importantly our potential. I want to challenge you to think about this quote and the meaning it has for you as a unique individual. Ask yourself, “Am I striving for what I truly want, or am I being limited, hindered, or otherwise finding it difficult to achieve my dreams? And, most importantly…Why?
The point of this exercise is not to cause distress, nor is it meant to invalidate any experiences. It is meant to offer you a novel way to examine your potential and your ability to engage in that potential. I can assure you that your potential is likely greater than you are giving yourself credit for.
Written By: Stephen Ham