A few weeks ago, I was listening to a podcast and something an interviewee said stuck with me. When asked his biggest fear, he responded with, "not living up to my potential." At first glance, I thought this was an exceptional answer but then I started to get anxious. How do you know if you are reaching your potential? And what does that even mean? Am I reaching my full potential at work, in health, in my relationships? Maybe I am overthinking it but suddenly that answer became a lot more complicated. And that's when it struck me. To me, his answer implied that our full potential meant being at top capacity and pushing your hardest at every area in your life. Just typing that makes my stomach knot up.

Balancing your potential.

After a week or two of ruminating on this idea and feeling ill about it, the concept of balancing potential came to me. There is an illusion that we can have it all but the reality is that if you are focusing on work and health, your relationships may be suffering. If you're focusing on relationships and work, you may not have time to focus on your health. We can't have it all BUT we can flow between the most important areas of our lives and ensure each is in a good place as we focus on improving it (reaching our potential).

Living up to your potential.

Instead of thinking you must be at full capacity, in your full potential all the time, in all areas of your life, understand that there is no balance, only focus. When you try to balance it all, you end up short changing yourself and feeling like you aren't meeting your potential in any area. You can't have it all and do it all but you can have it great in the areas you focus on and you can do it all, just not at the same time. 

Photo by Adam Kool on Unsplash