Mentor and productivity coach Michael Hyatt recently told a story about his dog, a sweet little rambunctious thing that was constantly trying to run out in the street like a jailbroken inmate longing to be free. The doe-eyed romanticist who once said “if you love something, set it free” probably wasn’t thinking of letting loose an animal into highway traffic, so Michael did everything he could to keep the dog indoors to keep it safe from the oncoming traffic it would inevitably meet should his wish for freedom be granted. It would have been impractical, expensive, and downright ugly, so he took a different tack and bought an “invisible fence.”
The invisible fence, for those who don’t know, is a wire buried under the ground which senses when a chip in the dog’s collar is near. When the collar, and thus the dog, gets close to the subterranean wire, a beep sounds in the collar. If it gets too close, a tiny but painful electric shock is delivered, reminding Fido that freedom will have to wait. Michael’s dog had to get that shock only a couple of times before he learned that it is futile to fight the fence. He couldn’t see the barrier, but it was there nonetheless.
We have an invisible fence, too, and it sits on top of our neck, nestled inside our most complex organ, the brain. The human brain is a marvel of divine engineering, capable of limitless innovation. The brain has written symphonies, discovered cures, and sent people into space. But unfortunately, far more often the same organ that sets men free to think and achieve beyond their wildest dreams keeps many people pinned beneath glass ceilings of their own design, locked in a self-made prison.
Here’s a couple ways to see if you’re setting up your own invisible fence:
- When you talk to yourself, what do you say? Is it words of encouragement, or disdain?
- When you see yourself in your mind’s eye, what do you see? Success, or failure?
- When you describe yourself to others, what do you describe? Your dreams, your aspirations, the noblest parts of yourself…or statements of mediocrity and disappointment?
How little we account for the truly startling power of our own minds and how our self-concept can either keep us in prison, or set us free! Don’t settle for an invisible fence that locks you in…jump the invisible fence by starting to embrace a positive and confident mindset that encourages a life without limits!!!
“If you think you can or you think you can’t…you’re right.” – Henry Ford