Photo by Joshua Ness on Unsplash

A Quote That Will Shake You to Your Core and Make You Want to Change

Every once in a while, I’ll write a post with my favorite quotes because quotes are an integral part of my life.

Instead of just posting them on an Instagram quote card and calling it a day, I think of these words often, constantly, almost obsessively, and use them to guide my decision making.

Quotes are simultaneously the most and least useful tools on planet earth. They can go in one ear and out the other, or you can use them to change your life.

I tried to think of the quote that has inspired me most. This is like choosing your favorite child, but I know the one that just hits you right between the eyes.

It melts away your rationalizations. It forces you to face your life head-on and decide what to do next. It makes you think because it’s both terrifying and inspiring to think about.

You’ve probably seen this quote before — in my posts and in others. This time, think about the implications deeply enough that you actually do something with the words this time.

Someone once told me the definition of hell; on your last day on earth, the person you could have become will meet the person you became.” ― Anonymous.

Ugh. Just imagine how sick it would make you to witness this person’s life.

Most of us live in Potentialville. We have this idea of who we could be, but we leave it in our imagination and use it as a source of comfort — a coping mechanism.

You tell yourself that, eventually, you’ll become this person. But most of us never do. Most of us never even come close. That’s okay, though, because we can rationalize our situations to death.

We can tell ourselves all sorts of lies about our contentment and satisfaction, even though deep down we know it’s BS. But if we were able to see this fully-actualized version of ourselves, that illusion would shatter to pieces.

You know you could become a much, much, much better version of yourself.

And, honestly, there’s no amazing answer to overcoming your fear and making that process happen.

Yes, there are tons of tools, programs, insights, strategies, etc, that can give you the steps, but you still have to overcome the hurdle and close that gap between your thoughts and actions.

You have to fight this battle over and over again, every single day. And you can do that by reminding yourself of this quote. Reminder yourself of the person you can become and try your hardest to become that person.

Why, though? Shouldn’t you just be happy? Isn’t the never-ending pursuit of success a problem and addiction in and of itself? Aren’t we all just brainwashed by the culture of Western rugged individualism? Shouldn’t we follow the teachings of the East? Peace, contentment, reduction of ego?

I’ll be the first to admit. I probably do have an ‘ambition script’ running in the background of my mind. But, I like it. I love it. I love the pursuit itself more than the reward.

I’m not telling you what to do. I’m just telling you what it does for me and what I suspect it’ll do for you.

Think of when you’re creating a character on a video game like the Sims. Do you create the most average avatar possible? Or do you make them the coolest person you can possibly make them? Do you give them an average life? Or the most successful life you can possibly think of?

Nobody aims and strives for mediocrity. Mediocrity is a place you end up in.

Yes, we all have differing levels of ambition. But most of us fall well below that threshold.

The answer is simple. If the fearless version of you would behave differently, you’re living below your potential because you’re operating from a place of fear.

When you think of that version of you in a parallel universe, deep down, you know they probably wouldn’t be doing whatever it is you’re doing right now.

There’s a growing self-acceptance movement where people will tell you to love yourself just the way you are. I partially agree with that sentiment. Yes, you are inherently good enough just the way you are. But that doesn’t mean you can’t strive to be more.

Most people who push to become successful do so from a place of insecurity.

Who says that’s a bad thing?

You can try to meditate in a cave, become minimalist, and have no goals, but what if that doesn’t work?

What if attempting to fill the void is the best strategy?

When you try to fill the void with accomplishments, you’ll realize the accomplishments themselves can’t fill the void. You’ll realize seeing yourself grow was the point all along.

But you won’t properly learn that lesson without going through the process. When you feel like you’re leaving loads of potential on the table, you’ll always wonder what if.

You’ll always have a low-level of anxiety, call it quiet desperation, that dramatically rises from time to time when you realize you might be wasting your life.

Maybe you won’t solve all your problems by reaching your goals, but you’ll be a hell of a lot closer to the answer than you’d be by letting life push you one way or another.

Don’t you want to see? Don’t you want to push the envelope a little bit? That’s my biggest source of motivation now — I just want to see how far I can take it.

That’s it.

Think of that quote. Think of how far you can take your life vs. the way you’re living right now.

Do something with that answer.

Build profitable skills with this free checklistThe Ultimate Guide to Discovering Your Natural Talents and Strengths. Learn how to become a top Medium writer with my free 5-day course.

Learn how to become a top Medium writer and make a living writing here —

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store