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Are you waiting to knock at the door of possibilities?

By G. Balasubramanian

How long have you been waiting for this to happen?

Did you ever think why you did not dare to do it so far?


Someone may be waiting to open the door for you!

Someone may be waiting on the other side to listen to the sound of the knock!

May be – A Santa may be sitting on the other side to give you a bagful of gifts!

Yes, the other side of the door is a just a mystery – Possibly, it has a bouquet of hopes to welcome you towards a new journey!

Then, what is holding you? – fear, suspicion, self-doubt, insecurity, uncertainty, or anything else? Or are you hesitant to take a risk just investing time and energy to examine a possibility? Well, I have come across many who suffer from one or the other to explore a possibility -just being unsure of their own self. They often lack self-knowledge rather than the worldly knowledge.

The man who was carrying a load of steel vessels on head, examined a possibility – he became a retail sale king!

The man who was selling clothes on the back of a bicycle examined a possibility - he became a billionaire!

The man who was repairing a bicycle examined a possibility – he became an automobile producer!

The man who was selling food on a cart in a road, examined a possibility – he became the owner of a chain of restaurants!

The man who was teaching in a school in a remote town examined the possibility of starting a school – he became the chancellor of a university!

People grow when they are willing to examine possibilities!

“I dwell in possibility…” wrote Emily Dickinson in her poem on ‘possibility’ All that we need to understand that the world is full of possibilities. “When you become comfortable with uncertainty, the world opens up with infinite possibilities” writes Eckhart Tolle, the author of the book “The Power of Now”

People who feel challenged when they are just close to the door of possibilities, but are hesitant to knock the door need to do the following exercises:

1. Examine the currents status

Are you happy with your status? Are you happy with things that make you what you are? Have you ever thought of growing bigger? If so, what are your plans for growth? Have you had dreams? Have your ever examined whether these dreams are what you want to achieve? Have you taken at least the first step towards them? Answering these questions is critical for deciding the magnitude and direction of your future growth, the possibilities that you have for growth. “A thought, even a possibility, can shatter and transform us” says Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, the bestselling novelist of New York. He adds “It's the possibility that keeps me going, not the guarantee.”

2. Identify the Roadblocks

Fred has been having a business which has had a linear growth for several years. His struggle, his energy and his efforts did not pay adequate dividends commensurate to his inputs. “Well, Fred” said his mentor “The problem with you is that you are fighting with the same devil repeatedly. Knowing full well that is the singular roadblock, you love to fight it repeatedly rather than work out strategies to remove it.” Fred was indeed subservient to his negativities and was convinced that he can never get out of them. Beware, before you knock the door of possibilities, remove the roadblocks, and dump the negativities in the nearest bin.

3. Let the past go

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be,” said Lao Tzu. Letting things go is a way of unburdening oneself from things that do not work. There is a difference between ‘giving up things’ and ‘letting things go.’ In trying to let things go, one consciously watches the mobility of things which did not help, things which one found difficult to negotiate and which were holding one to ransom for their own interests. As one gets ready to knock the door of possibilities, it should be done with a free and open mind, liberating the self from the conditioning of the past, so that the mind is willing to receive, the mind is willing to discover the best of the self, the possibilities flow as a gentle stream.

4. Challenge the self

Well, the fear, insecurity and uncertainty challenge the glory of the self. They often whisper into the ears that ‘it is impossible.’ This is what challenges the self. One tends into a withdrawal mode with a question ‘why should I risk?’ They recall the proverb ‘a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’ out of context. It is important to understand that challenging the self is not a fight one has with the self. It is a trigger to provide to grow bigger. When Edmund Hillary conquered the Mount Everest he said, “It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves.” it was indeed a challenge that he gave to the self, and not really to the mountain. He found the new self in him, new power, new energy, and the courage to climb the peak. And so, everyone can.

5. Be Ready to receive ideas

True, we are not Isaac Newton waiting under the tree for the fruit to fall. Nor are we smart enough to jump with an idea on noticing the falling apple. Nor are we thoughtful enough to get the ‘eureka’ moment! But the ideas are just floating in the air. All that we need to do is to grab it, examine it and experiment with it. Just a bit of curiosity is good enough to light the fire. Search and research are just the pathways to feed the hunger of the curiosity! Get -set- Go! The possibilities are often capsuled into ideas that float. See them, feel them, hold on to them. Says Roy T. Bennett, the author of the book “The Light in the Heart”: “Remember that things are not always as they appear to be… Curiosity creates possibilities and opportunities.”

6. Move out of the Comfort Zones

Living in the comfort zones is one of the biggest threats to growth. One becomes a tamed pussy cat warming up in the kitchen. It is like running a marathon with logs tied to the legs. “Coming out of your comfort zone is tough in the beginning, chaotic in the middle, and awesome in the end...because in the end, it shows you a whole new world!” says Manoj Arora, in his book “From the Rat Race to Financial Freedom.” It calls for a change in basic assumptions in the belief systems. It moves the racehorse from its stable to the turf for a Derby. “As you move outside of your comfort zone, what was once the unknown and frightening becomes your new normal” says Robin S. Sharma, the Life-coach. Once you take the first step, the possibilities will gravitate you like a powerful magnet.

7. Enjoy taking risks

Every next step is a risk for one who is hesitant to dare. Risk taking is not a misadventure, but a considered response to an unseen opportunity. Though it moves one from a world of known to that of the unknown, this journey is associated with thrill, excitement, and joy of a new experience. While fulfilling one’s curiosity to explore, it offers an opportunity to demonstrate the courage, conviction, and capacity to work with a set of things which challenge growth and development. "Security is mostly a superstition. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing” says Helen Keller, Oftentimes, those who want to seek new possibilities hesitate to venture with a feeling that things could be difficult. This is just an assumption about a thing which is not yet known or experienced. Seneca, the Roman Philosopher once remarked “"It is not because things are difficult that we dare not venture. It's because we dare not venture that they are difficult."

8. Align your passion

Passion is the fuel to any creative enterprise. It pumps the much-needed adrenaline into the system to let us forge ahead. It gives the energy and the drive to move towards higher pedestals of growth and performance. The moment one ‘knocks the door of possibilities, it is important to identify the opportunities for performance and should shower the passion in the pathways. “I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious,” said Albert Einstein. Aligning the passion with the possibilities infuses a sense of courage and self-confidence to catalyze the performance. It helps to nurture the ideas.” You must be burning with an idea, or a problem, or a wrong that you want to right. If you are not passionate enough from the start, you'll never stick it out” claims Steve Jobs.

9. Build the capacity

In a fast-changing world the knowledge and skills are getting redundant too soon. The shelf-life of knowledge and skills are coming down fast. It becomes, therefore, imperative to stay alive on the learning curve. “Everything comes to us that belongs to us if we create the capacity to receive it “says Rabindranath Tagore. Capacity building is an essential requisite to face the challenges of possibilities and opportunities. Carrying them on weak shoulders would indeed be foolish and self-defeating. Says Pablo Picasso “I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it."

10 Answer your creative questions

“Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers” says Voltaire. When an individual opens the door of possibilities, he will certainly encounter a number of unfamiliar questions. Many of such questions would demand creative thinking and therefore answers which are non-routine. May be, it might solicit a change in basic assumptions in the culture of thinking. One might have to apply several types of thinking skills in context to find the answers. These challenges should never deter one; one should feel privileged to find the correct answers that would fertilize and nurture growth.

Are you ready now to knock at the door of possibilities? Just remember the words of St Francis of Assisi “Start by doing what is necessary, then what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”