Can’t or won’t?

While on the elliptical at the gym this morning, I saw a quote that said something to the effect of “Self-discipline is easy when you clear your mind of can’t.” I was thinking about the number of times in my life when I’ve said “Oh, but I can’t possibly…” or had the automatic thought, “I can’t do ____.” The only thing that happened those times I said “I can’t” is that I remained where I was–mentally, emotionally, physically, or spiritually.

One of the main reasons that it was possible for me to write a book about my experiences overcoming Binge-Eating Disorder was that I told myself, “I can do this.” I kept my goals short-term and simple. I measured my progress and celebrated small successes (not with food!). I set out to do something that was, in all likelihood, attainable. I was realistic about the time frame (it took me three years from first having the idea until the day it was published–and that was “just” a 100 page book).

The great thing about “can” is that it begets success. When I said, “I can write two paragraphs tonight” and then did so, the next night it became easier to say, “I really CAN write two paragraphs tonight.” When I struggled with something I said to myself, “I can get some ideas from my friends.” The emphasis in the phrase “I can” isn’t on the word “I”. There were many many supportive people, places and things that got me to the point of publishing a book. “I can” gave me the confidence to take one step at a time. And isn’t that what this journey called “life” is all about?

Peace, joy, and health!



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