How much do our beliefs shape how far we progress?
I recently attended a Tony Robbins event in which he shared the story of Roger Bannister and the four-minute mile. Back in the day, many doctors and scientists believed that it was physically impossible for a human to run a mile in less than four minutes. While many tried, no one had achieved that feat.
In 1954, however, Roger Bannister achieved the seemingly impossible. He ran a mile in less than four minutes, with a time of 3:59.4.
Incredibly, after that, others were able to do so as well. Once Bannister ran the mile in under four minutes, others knew it was possible to do so and thus more easily did. This is an example of how something may seem impossible until someone does it. To quote Joel Runyon, “Once you stop believing something is impossible, it becomes possible.”
How often do we limit ourselves by believing that something is out of reach or impossible?
When have we decided not to throw our hat in the ring because we didn’t think we were good enough or qualified – essentially telling ourselves that it would be impossible for us to be chosen? While our “impossibles” are not about breaking world records, they are still incredibly significant and can affect the trajectory of our lives. What would happen if we took “impossible” out of our vocabulary and lived life believing that everything was at least possible?
Audrey Hepburn said, “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!”
This is especially important for women to internalize.
According to various studies, women are far less likely to negotiate their salaries than men are. Linda Babcock, an economist at the Carnegie Mellon University, states that, “by not negotiating their job at the beginning of their career, [her graduate students are] leaving anywhere between $1 million and $1.5 million on the table in lost earnings over their lifetime.”
Think about that.
So I encourage you to reach for what you desire – stretch yourself further than you believed possible, even if you do not think you can obtain or achieve it, or loved ones tell you that you’re wasting your time.