If It Terrifies You, That Is The Place Where Your Potential Is Waiting To Be Released


The Way I See It

I had a great conversation today with one of my mentors.  It was really interesting because 90% of the conversation was around potential, and what this year was opening up for me.  What made it so interesting is that I had already written about most of what they were bringing up.  I had written it with myself in mind, as that is what my writing this blog is all about.  Writing what is showing up for me supports me in multiple ways.  I love sharing it with you, in the hope that I can support you in your growth.  It isn’t that you don’t already know everything I write.  It is just that we all need reminders of how important it is to keep growing in our life.  In turn you inspire me back with your likes, hearts, comments, and sharing of what I write.

What I realized during the conversation, is that I had this containment field around what I thought my potential was.  It was an unconscious fence based on how I have been changing and transforming my life.  Based on what I think LemonadeMakers is growing me into.  I didn’t realize that I had put a ceiling on my potential.  I had unconsciously concentrated on my writing gift, as all I had to offer to my community.  A person can grow only as much as their horizon allows.  

Only when we put our perceived potential to the test, can we learn to look, know where to look, and position ourselves to realize our true potential. 

  – Unknown

In the discussion with my mentor, we talked about music.  My writing, especially my poetry has music enveloped within it.  When I write I hear music.  I have always maintained that I can’t sing.  That I am tone deaf.  I guess it came from around 4th grade, when I had a choir class.  The only time I ever took choir was for just that few months.  I remember this moment when the teacher made each of us sing by ourselves to try and find the person who was out of tune.  I was terrified it was me.  I mean really scared.  I was standing there shaking, waiting to be humiliated.  She didn’t find the person she was looking for, but after that experience I refused to take choir again.  My mentors feel strongly that I have some hidden talents around music, so something new to explore this year. 

If it’s both terrifying and amazing then you should definitely pursue it.

  – Erada

As I have said in other posts, we moved around a lot when I was a child.  I don’t think that I finished one whole year at a school until high school.  So at one point, I remember music lessons in an elementary school.  I wanted to learn piano, but my parents couldn’t afford to rent one.  The school had a violin, so that was what I got to learn to play.  I remember practicing, and of course I sounded horrible.  My parents complained about the noise.  When we moved, the violin went back to the school.  I never took music lessons again.  So when they said that I probably had some talent with music and singing, I remembered my childhood experiences.  They were not favorable.  So what do you do when someone tells you, you have a hidden talent waiting to be discovered, lying in a place that you abandoned in failure?

It is good to look at, to examine the stories we have created around things in our life.  While stories help us to make sense of our experiences, they are inherently not true.  Most of them are made up by us.  They serve a purpose to try and make sense of our lives.  But if we live our life as though they are true, we are doing ourselves a disservice.  We will walk away from gifts and talents.  We will assume the story is right.  We will assume that we can’t do or be what we thought we could.  We walk away from our full potential.

Inherent in being proactive and trying new things, and not waiting to be told what to do, is the fact that you’re going to fail, you’re going to make mistakes, and you’re probably going to piss people off.  And it you’re not pissing people off, if you don’t have haters, if you’re not putting yourself in a situation that has some risks associated with it, you’re probably not going to realize your full potential.

  –  Gina Bianchini

Overcoming self-limiting beliefs and self-imposed limitations is often the biggest obstacle standing between you and the realization of your full potential.  One way to see where our potential might be expanded is to make a list of your gifts and talents.  Be sure to list the things that others say you are good at, but which you discount as being “no big deal”.  Then look at each one, and see where the passion is on a scale of 1 – 10.  Then taking the three highest ranking talents, ask yourself how in love with it you are.  The one talent that you are passionate about, and also in love with – that is the one that has more potential just waiting for you to explore and expand.

In keeping with the discussion, I am meditating on what to do with this new challenge around music?  Singing lessons?  Take up piano lessons?  Learn to play the American Indian drum I purchased years ago, but just play around with?  I was just gifted with an Ukulele and it appears to be really easy to learn – at least that was what they told me when they gave it to me.  I challenge you to take up some childhood dream that you had, that you felt like you failed at.  What existing gift or talent can you try to unleash and find your own unlimited potential? 

What can you pursue that is both terrifying, and amazing?  What can you pursue that you will fail at trying, but know in your heart that you are supposed to be doing?  You become a master at something when you have practiced the 10,000 hours.  it is scary to think of how much potential is lost by those who don’t have the courage to unleash it. The edge of potential is where you are meeting difficulties in your life. 

Change is inevitable, but transformation is by conscious choice.

  –  Heather Ash Amara



  • You are allowed to have confidence in crazy ideas (they are the best kind)
  • You are allowed to sign your own permission slip (go on a field trip)
  • You are allowed to stop researching and start experimenting (you know enough and most of what you need to learn you learn by doing)
  • You are allowed to try things before you fully understand them (go ahead and take it apart and put it back together a new way)
  • You are allowed to define your own success (hint . . . it happens when passion is born and takes you to new heights)
  • You are allowed to start many things and not finish most of them (the no guilt zone)
  • You are allowed to figure out how to do the work without doing the part you don’t like (there are people out there who like cleaning toilets . . . really!)
  • You are allowed to push comfort boundaries (don’t let yourself die why you are still living . . .  comfort zones suck all of the oxygen out of the room)
  • You are allowed to FAIL. A LOT. (In fact, it is required)

  • You are allowed to push yourself harder than you ever had before (you might decide that you like the rush of the edge of potential)
  • You are allowed to invest a new way to do it (vision is seeing potential in what others overlook)
  • You are allowed to make work feel like play (love what you do and you will never work a day in your life)
  • You are allowed to love what you do and the way you do it (it is what you were created to do, so do it!)

Do not dilute the truth of your potential.  We often convince ourselves that we cannot change, that we cannot overcome the circumstances of our lives.  That is simply not true.  You have been blessed with immeasurable power to make positive changes in your life.  But you can’t just wish it, you can’t just hope it, you can’t just want it…, you  have to live it, be it, do it.

  – Steve Maraboli

You have within you, right now, everything you could ever need or want to be a great success in every area of your life.  Whether you’re aware of it or not, you have deep reserves of potential and ability.  If you properly harness and channel it, it will enable you to accomplish extraordinary things in your life.

It’s about personal development.  It’s about creating your own character and pushing it to the limit.  It’s about pushing yourself so far out of your own and everybody else’s idea of who you are, and what you’re capable of, that you no longer believe in limits.  It’s about reaching beyond your so-called potential, because your potential is never where you or anyone else expects it to be, not even close.  It’s about being able to say with the last breath of your life, “I used all my potential and all  my talents and pushed myself to the limit.  I could not have fought any harder”..

  – Charlotte Eriksson

Potential is in fact, limitless.  It is unlocked by gratitude. In order to really experience what life has waiting for us, we need to break out of living close to the potential.  We need to release the fears and unleash our creative potential.  We need to pursue the things we dream about doing.  We need to pursue the things that are pure and real to us, authentic to who we are becoming.

I love piano music.  I can sit and listen to it for hours.  I wanted to play as a child.  I was given a free piano a couple of years ago.  It sits in my living room as a place to put family photos.  It just gathers dust because:  I took it thinking that my grandkids who were living with me at the time could learn to play, not for me to learn it myself.  It needs tuning.  I really don’t have the time to take lessons.  I probably can’t learn to read music, or understand how to get the timing of a piece of music.  I could go on and on listing the reasons (excuses) why I haven’t even tried to learn to play even though it is sitting there looking back at me every single day. 

I am going to listen to divine direction, and see what unfolds around music and/or singing in my life.  I am going to see where inspiration is lying hidden, waiting for me to dig down to it.  To uncover that vein of gold.  I am going to see where the music in my soul is waiting for me to have the courage to pursue it and express it.

You can only become truly accomplished at something you love.  Don’t make money your goal.  Instead, pursue the things you love doing, and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off you. 

   – Maya Angelou

So here we go.  I am committing to unleashing my potential around music.  What will you commit to?  Your inner potential cannot develop without your willingness to commit.  Please comment below and say it out loud to be witnessed.  When you say it out loud, it is the first step to overcoming your current limits.  Go do what you were created to do. 

Use your special key.  Unlock that potential  Lemonademakers 53 (2)

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Sheryl Silbaugh

I am married with 4 grown children who are all married and currently have 14 grandchildren and two great granddaughters. I work fulltime as a Director at Bank of America and I am the founder of LemonadeMakers.org, which is a website and Facebook page dedicated to personal transformation and growth. We all have life's lemons show up in our life, this website helps us to make them into lemonade.