4 Ways to Unlock Your Potential

by | Feb 16, 2024

Categories: Mindset
Unlock Your Potential

Human potential is unlimited.

I believe we have more potential then we could ever fulfill in a single lifetime. But the amount that we discover and leverage is directly linked to how we act and think each day.

Here are 4 ways to unlock more of it.

1. Seek Discomfort

It’s not enough to simply tolerate discomfort. We actually need to seek it out.

Let’s take physical strength. You don’t know the potential of your true physical strength without thriving on consistent discomfort provided by strength training. The potential for greater strength is in each of us but many never discover this for themselves. It isn’t because the potential isn’t there, but because we avoid the necessary discomfort to bring it out.

It works the same for any area of life where you want to grow. You get there through pursuing consistent discomfort.

Many make the mistake of making comfort the goal. Thinking that if life was just more comfortable they would really be able to make a dent in their goals and live.

This can come in the form of having more of something (more time, more money, etc.) or less of something (less pain, less responsibility, etc.).

The truth is that being comfortable should never be the goal. The beginning of comfort is the end of growth. All of the remaining limitless potential stays buried.

2. Become an Imperfectionist

Perfectionism is one of the greatest barriers to potential that there is.

If perfection is the goal then one tends to never start (or finish) anything. Nothing is ever “good enough”.

There can be no starting from where you are and using the goal of “better” to fuel your growth.

In the words of Adam Grant, “Progress comes from maintaining high standards, not eliminating every flaw”.

To do it right you have to be willing to do it wrong. You can’t be afraid of looking stupid or receiving negative feedback from others.

Progress and fulfilling potential often requires a mix of “good enough” while still striving for excellence. Those who can never accept a “good enough” action are generally perfect at one thing.

Inaction.

They are great pointing out flaws in others and their work, saying all the ways they could have done it better but they create nothing themselves.

With no ongoing creation, limitless potential of the individual stays buried.

3. Use It

You need to put yourself in the ring BEFORE you feel ready.

But nearly everyone is waiting to feel ready and then they’re going to go for it.

This flawed mentality has squashed more human potential then could ever be measured. It has kept gifts and dreams buried within and, ultimately forever, in the cemetery. That’s where all the potential contributions, dreams, and gifts go for those waiting to feel ready.

To quote Adam Grant, “You don’t need to get comfortable before you can practice your skills – your comfort grows as you practice your skills.”

Whatever it is for you, get started.

Waiting to feel ready is closely tied to being perfect. These people don’t start anything because it’s not perfect but because they didn’t start they ruin their chance of growth and excellence.

Excellence is achieved through the process. Starting imperfectly and continuing to refine from there.

Starting before you feel ready equals growth. Waiting to feel ready equals decline. By waiting to feel ready you’ll take that vast majority of your limitless potential with you to the graveyard. This is a disservice to the world.

4. Compete Against Yourself

While there is room for some healthy competition against others, the best gains in bringing out your potential are going to come from competing against yourself.

To support this statement, I present my favourite quote in the book “Hidden Potential” by Adam Grant:

“The risk of competing against others is that you can win without getting better. When you compete with yourself, the only way to win is grow.”

What an amazing statement.

In the game of life the best way to measure yourself is against the progress of time, not against an opponent.

Look back over the last 5 years. In what ways have you grown? What are you capable of now that you weren’t then?

This is the only comparison that matters as far as digging up more of your limitless potential.

Think of how much more empowering and positive this is compared to asking “How am I better than everybody else?”

Your potential is not fixed at birth. It’s not static unless we make it so. It’s impossible to max it out. As far as your potential is concerned, you will have never arrived.

This should excite you.

While we all may have certain traits, talents, and abilities that came as part of the package of us, our potential development of them is up to us.

Don’t take what could be your greatest contribution to the world to the grave with you.

Instead I recommend you:

  • seek discomfort
  • embrace imperfection
  • start before you’re ready
  • compete against yourself

These are the ways to unearth that buried potential, make more of yourself, and grow. The
world needs the fullest potential version of you.

And it’s all up to you. Go for it. Let’s see what you can do.

Matt Mantai, Author

Matt Mantai

Matt has been consistently strength training for over 25 years and has been a fitness professional since 2011. ARMOURY Fitness & Performance represents all he has learned in the principles of strength training, coaching, and personal development over that time. He lives to see others transform by the power of strength training, and his passion only continues to grow with each passing day. He lives in Didsbury with his wife, Fayth, and two sons, Uriah & Ezrah.

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