Don’t get Overwhelmed by Potential

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Photo by Robert Bye on Unsplash

Everything we do stems from one thing: potential.

Every single time you fix yourself a goal, you do it because you believe that there is a possibility of reaching it. You base your decision on the that you have to achieve it.

Potential can come in two forms:

  • Prepared potential
  • Unexpected potential

Prepared potential is potential that you work to create. You may want to become a pro athlete so you work tirelessly to reach this goal and while it may have seemed close to impossible a the beginning, you keep on working at it become the potential you have starts to appear and rise as you improve.

This kind of potential usually comes unnoticed because we are too focused on the task itself and it isn’t until later in the process that we notice the moment that was key in making us keep the working on it.

However, I believe that unexpected potential is the better version of it, not only because it surprises you out of the blue and opens a new world to your eyes. Your mind goes into overdrive and start imagining a whole lot of opportunities.

If you suddenly get a job on the other side of the world, you start picturing what you will be able to do when you get there. To make it simple: You get stars in your eyes.

But that is also when you may end up becoming overwhelmed by this potential. Ideas, wishes, are so numerous that you cannot find a way to organize those thoughts. Little by little you realize that there’s just too much and too many aspects that contradict each other.

If you move to Japan, you may want to climb Mount Fuji, go visit the countryside every weekend while also improving your Japanese and taking part in as many cultural activities as possible. When I first came to Japan during a University exchange in 2012, I then had many hopes to travel, experience the culture first-hand, etc. However, after arriving, I got overwhelmed and could not choose well what to do. As a result, I ended up mostly staying in Tokyo and enjoyed my life here, giving up without realizing it, the potential present just in front of me.

If you succeed in controlling your expectations and organizing them well though, you can then actually realizing them. Furthermore, you may open even more opportunities than originally imagined.

My flatmate will suddenly leave Japan next Wednesday. After almost a year of his transfer being pushed away, his company suddenly told him he should be there on Thursday for good. I will miss having him around but the opportunities that will open with me living alone in my flat, being able to reorganize it as I wish and follow my own schedule without outside influence, are almost making me dream. I believe that I will be able to focus more on my writing, read more, look for a better job safely, and so on.

Yet, I must be careful, wanting to do so many things at the same time may push me to do nothing, or close to nothing, in the end.

Potential is what drives us but it isn’t what makes us reach our goals. What we need for reaching our goals and actually acting on what we hope to achieve is organization.

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Polyglot speaking 6 languages. Writer. Helping the world to learn languages and become more understanding of others. Say hi →

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