Do you ever get a fleeting memory of how you used to feel when you were a kid, that incredible feeling of freedom and passion for trying new things? Life seemed so exciting! It’s okay to want that again. But it’s not necessarily the good old days that you yearn for – you may be missing the passion for trying new things with a confident feeling that you can succeed.
Why You Need to Forget the Word “No”
So what happened to your passion and confidence? Did the aging process steal it? Probably not; the more likely culprit is a confused mind. If you’re like most people, you’ve been clobbered with 60,000 “NO’s” during the formative years of two and six. As you took chances in order to learn and grow, the word you heard most was ‘NO!”.
Some NO’s were for your own good—“NO! Don’t get too close to the street.” But so many we’re for arbitrary reasons (NOOOO, because I SAID so.) Over the course of your four years, this relentless barrage of NO’s took its toll. Your curious mind became confused and began mimicking the scolding voices of your parents and others who dolled out the NO’s.
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You’re way past the scolding age, but past “NO’s” are still echoing in your mind. Can you hear them? Imagine if others could read your mind; how many NO’s would they hear howling in a day? It’s the NO’s that erode your sense of having incredible potential (which, by the way, is true about you).
When you identify with NO, you create a personality that expresses self-doubt and insecurity, dousing your passion for adventurous living. The chief mental crime we commit against ourselves is to stifle our passion by listening to old NO’s. NO-listeners don’t thrive, nor do they ever feel fully alive.
The Power of “Yes”
It’s time to wise up. It’s time to get your passion back and say “YES!” to life. This requires saying, “NO!” to those NO’s that still howl in your mind. If you’re paying attention to what you’re reading right now, you’ll find yourself nodding in agreement – YES, it’s time!
When you say “YES,” great things happen. So, how do you rid your mind of Howling NO’s so you can get your passionate sparkle back? The sparkle of a diamond is found in the diamond; it’s not found outside the diamond. The sparkle of passion and confidence is found in you; it’s not found outside of you. You get your sparkle back when you become your own teacher and do the inner work.
Three Steps to Living a Life of “Yes”
1. You begin by doing the work before the work
The work before the work is inner work that needs doing before you can do the out-in-the-world work necessary to manifest your dreams. Effective inner work brings your passionate sparkle back. You begin the inner work by exposing the harmful echoes of NO that intimidate you. Simply think of something that you yearn to accomplish, and listen. Can you hear the NO?
2. It’s time to call upon one of your many powers – the Power of Refusal
Refuse to feel powerless. A great way to do this is to write down the excuses the NO gives you for not attempting to succeed with your dream: “I’m not smart enough.” “I’m too old.” “I’m too young.” “I’m not lucky.” Just writing the excuses down strengthens your power to refuse to be intimidated by that howling NO. It’s your recognition of the harmful NO that weakens its grip on your mind, and your Power of Refusal that drives it away.
Related Article: How to Stop Negative Self-Talk
3. It’s time to make room for passion and courage to reclaim space in your mind
It’s time to engage in Operation Opposite; here is a mental process that I find very effective. I sit comfortably in my favorite chair, relax, and imagine driving down a bumpy dirt road toward a desert. It gets very hot, dusty, and uncomfortable. I ask myself, “Why are you heading in this direction?” The answer is, “I do it out of habit; no valid reason.”
Immediately, I engage in Operation Opposite, which is to make a U-Turn and head for the beautiful green countryside that is at my back. I say to myself, “That dirt road to the desert is a poor choice, but not final.”
Soon I am heading in the right direction, and I experience cooler, fresher air blowing through my mind. This step opens my mind to a practical, compassionate, wise voice that helps me find the right out-in-the-world action needed to achieve my dreams.
The above three steps gave me my sparkle back, and that’s when I quit teaching and decided to turn my passion into my profession. If I hadn’t mustered up the passion and courage to say “YES” to my true self, the self I was as a child before hearing the NO’s, I’d still be yearning rather than earning the income to live the life I dreamt of experiencing.
You are a superlative creator with limitless potential. That is what you knew about yourself as a child when you felt passionate and free to try new things. It’s still true about you. So now you know what to do to passionately and courageously say “YES!” to life as you did before hearing NO. Your childhood spirit of adventure awaits you, but it needs your welcome!
From his modest beginnings in a small town in Western Massachusetts, Rob White has built a multi-million dollar bi-coastal real estate empire and is an expert in the fields of personal and professional growth. He is the author of 180, a guide to achieving “inner strength and outer freedom”, and A Second Chance at Success: Remarkably Simple Ways to Open Your life to Opportunities and Turn Past Mistakes Into Lasting Confidence, Happiness, and Success.
Featured photo by Emery_Way
Originally published 2/12/13. Updated by the Inspiyr team 7/17/13.