Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago · 3 min. reading time · ~100 ·

Kevin blog
Repost: Two Destructive Words that Scuttle Your Dreams and Goals

Repost: Two Destructive Words that Scuttle Your Dreams and Goals

Photo: Abandoned Dream © Kevin Pashuk
Photo: Abandoned Dream © Kevin Pashuk

Every so often I sit down and take stock of my life.

- What’s going well? 

- What’s not going well? 

- What do I need to do to fix it?

- How do I get those damn squirrels out of my attic? (Real ones, not metaphorical).

I also take time to dream…

… and wonder.

It is during those times that I have made decisions that have had a huge impact on my life, or my family, or my team.

It’s when I set tangible goals… not the kind about what I’m going to eat for dinner, or where to go on vacation, but things that (for me) will make a dent in the universe*.

If you have read my profile, you will notice that I like to take on big challenges – either in a startup organization (start a new med school from scratch), or make a 100-year-old institution the leader in the use of technology (my current role).

I also take these times to look at those things that may be hindering me, or my team from achieving those goals, and set things in motion to overcome them.

Let’s call them obstacles, or resistance.

A brief segue…

I read.

A lot.

But there are some books I haven’t read, that the mere title was enough to impact me, and caused me to stop and consider the implications.

Years ago, there was a book that was (and still is) a best seller.

Originally published in 1952 (long before I was even a glint in my father’s eyes) it is still available on Amazon today (here).

I’m talking about Norman Vincent Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking.

… now, back to my post.

I’m not here to do a review of Mr. Peale’s tome – since admittedly I haven’t actually read the book.

I do want to talk about the connection between the title of his book and our self-talk which can derail our plans, our goals, and our dreams.

I have found a direct correlation between my words when setting a goal and the ultimate success or achievement of that goal.

This of course is a highly unscientific study based on n=1… but I thought I would share it anyway.

If you want to make a dent in the universe, or perhaps the dynamics in your team (which can feel as big), or repair a broken relationship, you are going to run into resistance.

It’s a given.

Like gravity.

You can pretend it isn't there, but you are still impacted by it.

Sometimes this resistance can appear to be overwhelming.

You hear yourself say things like

- “I can’t get that person to change their mind.”

- “I can’t get a promotion”

- “I can’t stop snacking before bed – especially when there is cake.”

- "I can’t forgive that person.”

- “I can’t find a way through this…”

… and I’ll bet you a Canadian nickel that you are right.

“I can’t” admits defeat before you even try.

“I can’t” is easy to say, since it doesn’t require any work, or change on your part.

But if you want to move on, you need to adjust your words.

- “I must find a way to get them to see a different point of view.”

- “I will make myself the best candidate for that promotion.”

- “I won’t snack before bed – even where there is cake.”

- “Even though it is difficult, I will find a way to come to a point of forgiveness. I am willing to be willing to forgive.”

- “I will find a way through this!”

In my times of deep pondering, when I look back at the goals I’ve achieved both professionally and personally, I have found that the words “I can’t” were never part of my successes.

Sometimes it was someone else who convinced me of the possible.

Most of the times, it was my choice.

It’s not about false optimism, but employing a tool to overcome resistance.

Javier Camara Rica of beBee is well known for saying “DREAM BIG!”.

It’s a most effective tool against the curse of the “I can’t”.

What do you do to overcome resistance and move forward?


Fay Vietmeier

1 year ago #15

Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago #14

Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago #13

Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago #12

Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago #11

Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago #10

Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago #9

Alan Culler

1 year ago #8

Thanks, Kevin

I remember telling my daughter when teachinng her how to ride a bike “Every time you say ‘I can’t' you make it that much harder.” She rides multi-day treks for hundreds of miles and reminds me of what I said when I find excuses not to join her.

I will and I can, better options than being negative. Always reach for the sky! 

John Rylance

1 year ago #6

John Rylance

1 year ago #5

Ken Boddie

1 year ago #4

One of the biggest obstacles, Kev, against fulfilling our dreams is procrastination. That’s why we need to break down our long term aspirations and goals into manageable packages. Each short term goal should be no longer than the time available for it, while each individual item contributes to the long term achievement. I think of the readily ‘do-ables’ as like the individual bite-sized squares in a bar of chocolate. Remember the Nike slogan and “Just Do It!” ✔️

Fay Vietmeier

1 year ago #3

@Kevin Pashuk 

A lovely repost Kevin. 💜

I have a friend who suffers from “I can't thinking”

I can't = words of death. Become a self-fulfilling prophesy. 

I do remind my friend who is a man of faith .. that he can “do all things through Christ who strengthens” him 

(he does believe that and receive that .. but very often the mind and the will do not cooperate with the spirit) 

Will I will? or Will I won't? 

We choose moment by moment and day by day .. until the last day.

(from my New Year post) Dream a new DREAM

The older I get the greater I dream
The visions of youth are now dimly seen
How lovely it is though years have flown by
You’ve much to accomplish & things yet to try
Each day’s an adventure & much is in store
Be fully expectant and open the door
In your DREAMS .. may you soar

Kevin Pashuk

1 year ago #2

Zacharias 🐝 Voulgaris

1 year ago #1

Strategize. Either you make a plan and act on it, or you make excuses…

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