Achieving Your Potential

The Game Show problem, logical fallacies, Marilyn's daily diet, multi-tasking and achieving your potential.

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Achieving Your Potential

Postby Marilyn » Wed May 21, 2008 6:30 am

Achieving Your Potential

If a reader asked whether I think I've reached my potential, I would answer, "Which one?" My physical potential? "No." My fame-and-fortune potential? "No." My contribution-to-mankind potential? "No." My happiness potential? Well, I sometimes do feel like I'm the happiest person in the world. So maybe I'd answer "yes" to that one. How about you?

Let's look at this logically: We all have only 24 hours in a day, and you can't do everything at once. Usually you can't even do two things at the same time: If you're at work, you're not with your family; but if you're at home, you're not at the gym; and if you're riding your bike, you're not doing volunteer work. In short: You've got to choose.

The facts of life: And unless you live alone, what about your spouse and children? They will be greatly affected by your desire to achieve your potential in any one area. In addition, your spouse likely would have to give up his or her own desire in order to accommodate yours.

Reality check #1: So you want to reach your potential in a certain area, but not exactly spend all of your waking hours in the pursuit. Well, understand that there will be plenty of people who will spend all of their time that way, and you'll be competing with them.

Reality check #2: Realize that your potential may not be what your Mom and Dad encouraged you to believe. For example, if achieving your potential requires favorable judgment by others, you are much less likely to succeed. No matter how qualified you may be to be President, you will be utterly dependent on getting enough votes, nearly all of them from strangers. The same goes for all other public offices. It also goes for selling artwork, getting promotions, and more.

What do you value? The potential you choose should be one that you value most, not one that someone else–such as a spouse or parent–wants you to achieve, or you'll achieve ulcers or high blood pressure first. Think about these four questions and decide which category comes closest to covering your main interest. Choose only one.

Which potential would you like to achieve most? 1) To make as much money as you possibly can? 2) To attain the highest public office you can? 3) To become famous for the work you do?
4) To help as many people as you can?

What does your choice say about you? The questions represent desires for: 1) gratification; 2) power; 3) approbation; and 4) virtue. The first is natural. The second is intrinsic for some of us. The third is acquired through the process of socialization, and the fourth is mostly instilled.

What to do about it? Consider the category you chose. Are you already trying to achieve your potential? Say you want to make a lot of money: Are you working hard and always looking for an opportunity to increase your earnings or open your own business? If you want to hold public office, are you involved in local government affairs? Maybe you want to be an actor or actress: Are you taking voice lessons or acting classes? If you want to help others, are you busily doing just that at work or perhaps in your spare time?

If so, relax. You're already trying to be "all you can be." As long as you continue to work at it, you'll achieve your potential, although it may not be the goal you had in mind. That's real life, not the scenario that may have been painted for you in elementary and high school.

But maybe you're not trying to achieve your potential at all. For example: You want to do good in the world more than anything else, but you're spending all your time shuffling paperwork at the office, and when you get home, your kids have first priority. What to do? Take just one step toward your dream: In this case, you could go online and search for community service projects for children and families. No matter what kind of goal you want to reach, you'll be able to head in that direction. And as long as you do, you'll achieve your potential in the real world.
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Postby robert 46 » Wed May 21, 2008 11:39 am

Will wonders never cease?
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Potential

Postby rshoff » Thu Jun 05, 2008 1:18 pm

:)
Last edited by rshoff on Sat Jun 28, 2008 5:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Bodhisattva » Thu Jun 05, 2008 2:51 pm

Achieve your potential... The phrase sounds a little canned. As for the "virtue is instilled" part, I agree. You can't have virtue without concern for how your actions effect others, and that is learned.
"Does reality matter?"
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Postby Assimilator » Thu Jun 05, 2008 5:55 pm

The quest to reach your potential is a powerful driver and at the heart of self-motivation. However, knowledge or a belief that you have reached your potential in some aspect of life might be depressing if you believe it is all that you can do with your life. If it is some plateau, such as champion, millionare, or PHD, then the moment should be enjoyed and pride is certainly justified. But, if you wallow in your victory and do nothing else, your victory might eventually lose some of its appeal. For example, if you think that your best reseach is behind you, your greatest art was from an earlier time in your life, or you are less capable at some point in life, you might feel as if things can only get worse.

I think a defense mechanism against this depression is to not value any one aspect of life so heavily that when you reach either the summit, or your potential in a particular quest, you have no place else to go. Perhaps, a better strategy would be to look for another future achievable summit in some other aspect of life, using what you have learned on your first quest to help you achieve the second. Then enjoy the trip down the first hill and back up the next hill to reach your potential in some new area. Seems like the more of these challenges you face and strive for, the more you begin to enjoy the quest to reach your potential in any selected endeavor. The more you enjoy the quest to reach your potential, the more peaceful you become along the journey.
Last edited by Assimilator on Sun Jun 22, 2008 9:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Why not be critical even some more?

Postby cacao » Fri Jun 13, 2008 1:10 pm

The potential is something we cant see and thats what makes it so hard to reach.
Last edited by cacao on Wed Aug 06, 2008 3:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I use a notepad to remember things. Thats my best feature:D
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potential

Postby rshoff » Fri Jun 13, 2008 2:04 pm

:)
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blank

Postby karabelas34@hotmail.com » Wed Jun 25, 2008 8:16 pm

Items deleted.
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Postby Bodhisattva » Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:10 pm

@ karabelas34@hotmail.com

I think there's been a shift that has been occuring through the ages from putting the emphasis on higher pleasures, to putting the emphasis on the lower pleasures. But I also think that you've got a bit of circular reasoning (or question-begging, maybe) there. Your argument is: By focusing on the lower pleasures, we're undermining what has brought the intellectual giants immortality. That is why we must stop focusing on the lower pleasures. My quip: Then they haven't truly achieved immortality of any sort, have they?
But that's only true on the surface, isn't it? The desire for immortality through our works of art, for meaning, for love, is still there, etched into our psyches forever, as a part of human nature.
"Does reality matter?"
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Blank

Postby karabelas34@hotmail.com » Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:23 pm

Items deleted.
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Postby Bodhisattva » Thu Jun 26, 2008 11:55 am

Well, I knew you didn't mean physical immortality, but great works of art and literature can be undermined and forgotten, so even this form of immortality isn't certain.
"Does reality matter?"
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Postby Bodhisattva » Sun Jul 13, 2008 12:18 pm

Hey, Marilyn, you there? I'm glad you're helping others achieve their potential, just don't forget yourself. We both know what people as smart as you have potential for. Shakespeare... Da Vinci...John Stuart Mill. All had your level of intelligence. So the fact that you're happy where you are isn't an excuse. If good old Da Vinci had been happy where he was, then we wouldn't have the Mona Lisa. So why not achieve your own potential, Marilyn?
"Does reality matter?"
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Potential

Postby bill » Tue Jul 29, 2008 1:40 pm

If your riding your bike you can do volunteer work and be and the gym at the same time. Ride your bike to and from grocery stores to deliver food to the elderly or disabled. This is better than riding a stationary bike in the gym. Lifting and carrying the groceries (take the stairs not the elevator) is a form of resistance training or weightlifting.

In school instead of writing a term paper for English, a term paper for Sociology, a term paper for History, a term paper for Psychology, etc. try to combine all into one term paper. (Schools take note.)

Work at home!! (If you can). You may need to spend one or two days a week at the office -perhaps sometimes more- but even this cutback will help substantially in decreasing greenhouse gas's and America's dependence on foreign energy sources.

This is just a short note on the matter and I hope you get the gist of what I am saying!! :D :D :D

No offense, but what you have written is very clear, logical, coherent etc. however it lacks proper reasoning -the seasoning that would make your point of view easier to digest!!! :wink: :wink: :wink: Just kidding Marilyn.
(You of all people should know me by now -a jackass of all trades and a mastermind of none). I see your reasoning and it is correct however you did miss the important solution of combining activities to achieve more than one potential.

By the way what I sent you in the idea box wasn't for your personal edification, but I do believe some people do not clearly understand -even well educated people- the difference between such words as logic, reasoning and purpose, thereby creating an inability to properly understand complex ethical and moral issues especially when it comes to this countries jurisprudence or math proofs and problems. I myself go to an online dictionary to check my usage and proper spelling. I have often seen/read words misspelled and this makes it difficult for me to remember the correct spelling.

If anyone is offended in anyway by anything I have written in any column on Marilyn's web site. Please forgive me for as I said above I have an incredibly wicked sense of humor. Marilyn HERSELF knows I have humiliated many a good and kind individual (ain't I right papa Ivan and uncle George). I usually try to be witty but sometimes people who don't know me well enough and take my gibes the wrong way (I mean them to tease not taunt). Who knows maybe I should have tried to become a stand up comedian, maybe that's where my true potential lies. But if my true potential lies, how could I possibly be good at anything I have to do standing up. Seems like a paradox only Marilyn could solve. :roll: :roll: :roll:

Sorry that I went off on a tangent folks. :oops: :oops: :oops: I did it again!!! Marilyn knows all too well that I am just a lunatic looking for approbation (:D :shock: :?) The three wise men aka Moe, Larry and Curly :!: :!: :!: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Postby Moiety Noire » Wed Aug 27, 2008 4:59 pm

We have to achieve our resolve. You can't subsist on the deception contrived out of prerequisites for others' approval.

..you have to fill out an ape'placation.

..if they want letters from people vouching for you they can hire them.

Stick in the mud city people, U.S.A.
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Depends

Postby bill » Sat Sep 06, 2008 1:08 pm

If you have the proper references, what on earth do you need to fill out an application for.

All an employer really needs is ones social security number, name. The past is really none of a future employers business, (unless the person was a criminal), and gives no indication of a persons potential. Give an employer too much info about yourself and he will surely use it against you.

A list of accolades from others however is sure to impress.

All I really need do -to be perfectly honest- is just refer them to Marilyn's site.

Only a stupid fool would not hire me :lol: :lol: :lol:
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