How much do you give of yourself, every day, in order to be the person you want to be or do the work you want to do? Maybe you hold back, afraid of failure. Perhaps you are afraid of financial loss or worry what other people might think of you.
I’ve failed to be all in, and I’ve only just begun to realize that failure to commit 100% is a trap that holds us back.
This morning I watched a video of Jimmy Fallon and Miley Cyrus performing incognito at a subway station in NYC. Whether you are a fan of Jimmy Fallon (yes for me) or Miley Cyrus (not so much) you have to admit that they commit 100% to whatever they decide to do.
Just watch Fallon in the clip. He is not a professional musician, but he prances around like he owns the stage. He isn’t holding back, afraid that someone will make fun of him. He is all in, acting as if he is who he is pretending to be, owning it. He did the same with his impersonation of Neil Young a few years back. If you are going to successfully impersonate a great rock star, you better be all in and confidently give it your all. The only way to pull off something like that is take a big risk and commit.
There is a story about Spanish explore Cortéz landing on the shores of the Yucatan in 1519. Determined to take over and seize the treasures of the Aztecs, he ordered his men to burn their boats. Without boats, they had no option but to proceed 100% towards their mission. There could no longer abandon their goal.
When there is no turning back, you have to move forward. You have to commit time, energy, and resources. You have to do what you believe in to the very best of your ability. Having a plan B can be a viable option, but sometimes it is a safety net that will keep you stuck. Sometimes you have to burn the boats.
There are certainly times in my life when I have committed. I’ve committed to a career, a marriage, a house, and to my children. If you have done any of these things, you know how terrifying it can be.
I remember when we purchased our first home. I sat in the office at the title company and practically burst into tears while signing the papers. What was I getting into? Would I be poor for the rest of my life? What if we couldn’t make the monthly payments? I was terrified, but did it anyway. It worked out fine. We eventually sold that house for a nice profit and moved on to other houses.
Sometimes you just have to move confidently in the direction of your dreams. Commitment can be scary. Failing to launch is safer. It is easier to watch from the sidelines and avoid doing things than to put yourself out there and do the things that scare you. But you won’t move forward that way.
I have committed to being the best version of myself. That means I have to do what it takes. I have to eat better and exercise more than I like to. I have to focus on spending time with the people I care about. I have to give time, energy and financial resources to my business. If I go into these things halfheartedly, I will fail.
What I learn from watching Jimmy Fallon is that I have to act as if I am who I want to be. I have to commit 100%.
I have to burn the ships. My ships take the form of my “fat” clothes, which I need to get rid of so I don’t have them to fall back on. My ships are beliefs that hold me back, such as “People will think I’m crazy.” And some of my ships are my own fears, fear that I won’t succeed, or even more scary, fear that I am going to succeed beyond my wildest dreams and that will change everything.
What about you? What can you do to be all in? Do you have some ships to burn? I’d love to hear your ideas.