You must have dreams and goals if you are ever going to achieve anything in this world. – Lou Holtz
Big dreams scare us. They’re big because they involve risk. It won’t be easy. We could fail. Sometimes we put limitations on our dreams (and not just our own) because we’re afraid of what failing could do to us. That it would discourage us. That if we don’t achieve that seemingly impossible dream, nothing could ever match up and there’s no point in continuing on. In The Power Within, Chris Mason makes a point that applies to more than hockey:
For whatever reason, people want to tell you that you’ll never play in the NHL. Some people have heard that and it probably crushes them. For me, I’ve always believed I could do it. And I did whatever it took to make it.
Why is it that we try to discourage ourselves and others from dreaming big? We would rather crush our dreams than try and fail, or to get our hopes up and be disappointed. Is it really better to have regrets about dreams that were left on our pillows? It’s not just about hitting those over-the-top goals, but the sense of accomplishment that we get from putting everything we have into them and having no regrets, regardless of the result. When we aim too low, we never know how great we could be, what we could accomplish. We get comfortable with “good enough” and never aim for anything more.
Personally, I don’t fear failure. I know failure is a possibility, but it’s just not what I’m afraid of. But there is something I’m afraid of. I’m afraid of being just “good enough.”
That fear keeps me activated. It keeps me grinding to get better… It’s a good kind of fear. It doesn’t wear you out or paralyze you, it pushes you forward. It gets you in early and it keeps you trying new things. The fear of just good enough pushes you to be tough on yourself, no matter how good you might be getting.
Good enough won’t help you find your potential.
Good enough isn’t where the fun is.
Good enough doesn’t come up big.
Good enough isn’t where the difference-makers come from.
Good enough won’t get you to your dreams.
Good enough isn’t where you find joy.
And good enough won’t get you to the top of the podium.
- Mike Babcock, Leave No Doubt
Game Plan: Don’t settle for good when you know you could have great. What would you rather do? Aim low and hit or aim high and miss?
Quote source: Les Brown