One of the most daunting psychological resistors to using Pain-2-Power to become the most authentic, powerful version of yourSELF is the idea that it is “too late.” It’s too late because you’re so far along on a career path that, while it doesn’t speak to your soul, pays the bills. It’s too late because the business path you are headed down has cost you too much to reverse course for a more profitable trajectory. It’s too late because too much harm has come from misunderstandings in a relationship to resurrect it. It’s too late because you look around the room at the people registering for courses at college, and they all seem so young, compared to you.
It’s too late because you’re too old, too much in debt, too far behind on the career trajectory you actually have passion for. You’ve got too many car payments left, too many other ideas that didn’t work out, too many “friends” telling you to let that “pipedream” go.
Let me tell you something: That’s baloney. Massive bestselling author James Michener wrote 40 books after starting to write after age 40. Frank McCourt published his Pulitzer Prize-winning Angela’s Ashes when he was 66. J.K. Rowling lived as a single mother on welfare while completing the book Harry Potter. Harlan David Sanders (Colonel Sanders) was 65 and bankrupt when he started Kentucky Fried Chicken with his first Social Security check.
The voice inside you that is telling you that it is too late to become the person you were meant to be, from all time, is a voice of fear fueled by past disappointments. It isn’t the core YOU. You’ll need to talk back to it and tell it, in no uncertain terms, that persistence and determination are omnipotent. You’ll have to remind yourSELF that living a life that doesn’t honor who you truly are isn’t really living, at all.
Many scenes in great literature honor this FACT that you had better get going on the Pain-2-Power pathway. Here’s just one from the iconic play, Death of a Salesman, by Arthur Miller:
I ran down eleven flights with a pen in my hand today. And suddenly I stopped, you hear me? And in the middle of that office building, do you hear this? I stopped in the middle of that building and I saw—the sky. I saw the things that I love in this world. The work and the food and time to sit and smoke. And I looked at the pen and said to myself, what the hell am I grabbing this for? Why am I trying to become what I don’t want to be? What am I doing in an office, making a contemptuous, begging fool of myself, when all I want is out there, waiting for me the minute I say I know who I am!
I AM. Those two words don’t change with age or debt or missteps or mistakes or mortgage payments. Those two words won’t ever let you down.
It’s never too late for Pain-2-Power. It’s never too late for the real YOU to be born.
Dr. Keith Ablow
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