When Can is Married to Can't


Tug-of-war
This feels like marriage sometimes.

Opposites attract. That's a worn out statement.


What do you do when you're a can married to a can't? It feels like a constant game of tug-of-war.


First, don't buy into the can't. We still live in the land of the greatest opportunities, and we have the chance to make something of ourselves if we try.


Second, keep can-ing. Just keep winning. Keep opening up the doors of opportunity as you find them.


Third, keep dreaming. Anything and everything. At 5'3", I won't realistically be joining the WNBA, but the wide world of just-about-anything-else-is-possible is open.


Fourth, keep posting the goals or making vision boards or whatever keeps you working toward positive future change.


Looking back through life, and coming across old lists of goals, I find that we've accomplished just about all those things. House projects, family goals, financial goals (more just markers with farther ones down the line), business goals, trips with kids...


Most importantly, communicate with the can't. I'm highly deficient in this area and working hard to correct it. Try to understand their perspective and respect the experiences that have accumulated to that point. Maybe there are fears to deal with.


I put up mental barriers to filter the can'ts; not as a way of disregarding whatever the can't is saying, but as a guard against falling into the can't depression.


Sometimes the can't raises valid concerns. Deal with those concerns, maybe find a midway point for the can and can't to meet and still satisfy both parties; but make a clear distinction between valid concerns and excuses.


Excuses just hold back the can't in a rut of familiar misery.


As a last note: I will say the can tends to have 50 ideas every minute. Not all those ideas are great or good or worth pursuing.


However, I've seen that some ideas won't go away. The bad and junk ones get filtered out fairly quickly, but there's always a set that recurs in the idea mill.


Pay attention to the ideas that won't go away. Most likely, there is something there. Getting the can't to buy into it is another topic.