You can’t do anything you want
As you start this week, remember that you can’t do anything you want if you just put your mind to it. That’s a common thing some people like to tell children, isn’t it? You can do anything you want, if you just put your mind to it.
Well, I don’t find this very true in my own life. Try as I might, I can’t do everything I want to do. I can’t be taller than five-foot-two, which means I can’t reach the top shelf above the fridge if it killed me. I’m never going to swim in the Olympics, even if I started now and swam daily for the rest of my life. It’s okay—it’s just something I can’t do, no matter how much I might want to.
This bleeds in to less obvious areas in my life, too. I’m made more right-brained than left, and since I’m a believer in playing to my strengths instead of expending energy trying to improve on my weaknesses, it’s not in anybody’s interest that I become a chemist. Or a math teacher, for that matter.
It also means that because I only have twenty-four hours in my day, as do each of you, tomorrow I’m just not going to grow a luscious backyard garden, sew all the curtains in my home, run a successful business, build a new bookshelf, AND be awesome at Crossfit. I’m just not. I’m human.
So remember this about yourself, that you’re human, too, and that you can’t do everything you want to do. And that while this may be frustrating at times, it’s really a gift, these limitations. Bask in the limitations you’ve been given, and use them as permission to be awesome in your strengths.
Relish the things you can do, and don’t sweat the things you can’t.
Get our weekly email called
5 Quick Things,
where we share new stuff from the blog and podcast—that way you’ll never miss a thing. Tsh also shares other goodness from around the web... It can be read in under a minute, pinky-swear.
(You’ll also get her quick list of her 10 favorite essays and podcast episodes from around here, helping you wade through a decade of content.)