My first dance with self-doubt happened when I had 11 years and my favorite rap group, the Fat Boys, had released their movie “Disorderlies” on VHS! I wanted to watch it. But, my brother’s room was the entire basement and he held control of the big screen TV and VCR. So, I had to ask for big brother’s permission. Staying true to the asshole big brother/jock stereotype, he wouldn’t allow me to watch the movie unless I did one push-up. Just one? No problem! I tried. I failed. Problem. I was convinced that this was an unreasonable request and that I’d never watch the movie. I struggled for what felt like an hour to do that one goddamned push-up. When I was done, he kept his word and we watched “Disorderlies” and it was ridiculous. He was sure to point out that the test wasn’t to prove to him that I could do the push-up. The test was to prove it to myself. I didn’t really know how to process that at such a young age. It wasn’t until I began to notice the direct correlation between people’s abilities and their use of positive language that I understood. Flash forward to a high school weight room with strong teenagers encouraging each other to lift more than the last set. All of the language was positive in that room. There was no “can’t” language spoken in that weight room. I learned to stop saying, “I can’t do [blank]!”, just because I was never given the building blocks or coaching techniques to do so. Instead, I learned to ask for help. Here’s my challenge to you. Don’t say that you can’t just so that you’ll have an excuse not to try. Here’s my challenge to you. Speak/Think about what you can do and use that positive momentum to build. “Yeah, but Jet, I haven’t been doing push-ups since I was 11!” So what, start today with no regrets of when you did/didn’t start. As long as ambition exists, don’t try to convince yourself that there’s no way something can be done. What would your average day feel like if you replaced every can’t with a can?
“To achieve greatness, start where you are, use what you have, do what you can.” -Arthur Ashe