“Man often becomes what he believes himself to be. If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it. On the contrary, if I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning.”
I think that there is a lot to be said about the power of positive thought, about having resilience and belief in one’s self and abilities. More often than not, when I tell myself that I can do something, no matter how difficult it may seem, I manage to get on with it with more ease than if I let myself be threatened by it. I think the power of the mind and of thought is a great thing. It takes a lot to build up self-belief, especially in moments where things seem hard- personally, I have only been able to build up my own self-belief by getting through and conquering my more difficult life experiences, but the strength that comes from knowing you can do something is powerful. It is something I remind myself of time and time again when I feel vulnerable.
“To be a great champion, you must believe you are the best. If you’re not, pretend you are.”
I know I’m the sort of person who really lets nerves and fear get to me. Someone explained to me that if you go into something with the belief and conviction that you CAN instead of that you can’t, the likelihood is that you WILL be able to do it. I guess its all positive reinforcement to yourself.
Today, I was just thinking about fear, and how much power it has over people. I thought about how people quantify their fears and how they make it relative to things around them or other emotions they have experienced. Then I was reminded of this beautiful poem that I was shown by an old school teacher. It has an interesting, fresh perspective on things.
Our Greatest Fear
“Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate,
but that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some; it is in everyone.
And, as we let our own light shine, we consciously give
other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.”
“If you speak to a man in a language he understands it goes to his head; if you talk to him in his language, it goes to his heart.”
I actually quoted this in my personal statement for my university application, which I came across today, and it reminded me why I’m doing what I’m doing. Languages are very powerful, allowing communication, expression, emotion, care and structure – from running a government to international relations, to relationships. I love that by learning new words, grammar, idioms and expressions, I can convey so much to so many people. Just the other day, I spent 20 minutes speaking German on the phone and managed to book some train tickets, as well as have a laugh and a joke with the German man on the other end!