You are limitless. And I don’t mean that in a “woo woo” law of attraction kind of way. Science says we have not yet reached the limits of human performance. Within you, lies the ability to run a 4-minute mile, become a world-class concert pianist, master quantum mechanics, build a hundred-million-dollar business or achieve any other goal you want to accomplish.
The catch? It might take 20 years of hard, focused work and sacrifices to accomplish the above goals. Of course, you might not want to dedicate the next 20 years of your life to becoming the best in your field. You might be satisfied to get in the best shape of your life while building a successful 7-figure business and want to stop there. That’s fine.
Regardless, the process of getting better is always the same. The way a couch potato goes from taking an hour to walk a mile to being able to run one in 10-minutes is the same way one would go from running a 10-minute mile to running a 4-minute mile. The latter goals just takes much longer to accomplish.
So what does it take to unleash your limitless potential? Below are 5 scientifically proven ways for doing this:
1. Adopt A Limitless Mindset
We have not yet discovered the limits to what we are capable of accomplishing. The only exceptions are physical limits. For example, my mother who stands 4’9” is never going to dunk a basketball no matter how hard she trains.
Other than that, anything is possible. We must embrace this mindset if we are to become limitless. A good way to install this mindset is to look for evidence that anything you want to achieve can be achieved. Look for people who have done what you want to do and use them not just as inspiration, but as tangible evidence that you can accomplish – and even surpass – what they accomplished.
You’ll find in 99.999% of all cases that these people were not any more gifted or special than you. Instead, they worked hard for a long period of time to master their crafts.
“I cannot make my days longer, so I strive to make them better” – Paul Theroux
2. Always Move Past Your Comfort Zone
You might be familiar with the concept of “deliberate practice” popularized by the world’s leading authority on expert performance, Anders Ericsson. This is focused practice with the goal of improving performance. For it to be effective, you must always push past the point in which you are comfortable. It should be mentally taxing. If it’s easy, you’re not getting any better.
Failure to expand their comfort zones is why most people never reach the levels of success they desire. Regardless of if you want to perform better in your career or at a hobby, the only way to improve is to consistently move past your comfort zone.
3. Build Your “Focus” Muscles
Top performers are able to do a maximum of about four hours of focused, deliberate work per day. But if you’re not used to this kind of work and you say to yourself, “Tomorrow I’m going to do four hours of focused work” you will be setting yourself up for failure.
We need to build our “focus muscles” in the same way that a bodybuilders build their muscles: by starting where we are and progressively adding “stress” so the muscles expand. Begin by focusing on your work for an hour without distraction and build from there.
4. Train Like An Athlete (Even If You Work At A Desk All Day)
Just like top athletes, to maximize our potential we must exercise, eat a nutritious diet, and get sufficient sleep. These building blocks must be in place in order for us to have energy throughout the day to do our focused work. Studies also show that these three increase brain health, enhancing our ability to focus and concentrate.
5. Get Gritty
Psychologist Angela Duckworth wrote extensively about the science of “grit” in her book of the same name. She describes it as a combination of passion plus perseverance. In order for you to unleash your limitless potential you need passion and perseverance to stay committed to your goal.
People fail to reach their potential because they give up too easily. You must be willing to keep at it in the toughest of times. It’s difficult to do this without passion, which is best found when you’re working towards a worthwhile goal with a purpose beyond just your personal satisfaction. This kind of passion is what separates the merely successful from the ultra-high achievers who change the world.
“Above everything else I’ve done, I’ve always said I’ve had more guts than I’ve got talent.” ― Dolly Parton
Unleashing your limitless potential is a prime example of something that’s simple but not easy. If you apply these strategies to a goal worth pursuing, you will become an embodiment of success and significance.