Not in My House
“Can't” isn't a word in my household. For example, in the car the other day I let my youngest boy, Anden, say “can’t” like four times. I let it fly this time. We were on the way to go fishing before he had football practice. We get to the pond and he’s hooking up his lures. He goes, “Dad, I can’t get this on.” Lo and behold, he magically was able to get it on 30 seconds later.
That’s where I seized an opportunity to talk about this word. I said, “All right, maybe we haven't had this conversation yet, but we can't use that word anymore, because guess what just happened? You just told me you couldn't do this, but then you got it 30 seconds later. It doesn’t matter if it’s going to take you 10 minutes or 60 minutes. All this means is that you’re just not able to yet. You just haven’t figured it out yet.
It's not a can't, like you'll never in the world ever be able to figure this out. No, you're putting a lure on a damn fishing rod. So don't even use that language. We can't entertain that in our household because it breeds “I can’t be successful.”
I’ve done my best to eliminate this word altogether. My kids, the people I’m around, and the people I work with. I’ll ask them why are we putting limitations on ourselves? People do this all the time… they struggle with this or that, and then five seconds later they figure it out.
Reframe Your Thinking
Start believing that you’re going to figure it out. Don’t even bring “can’t” into the conversation because once you put it out there, you’re basically saying, “Oh I’m a little bitch, I can’t do this.” That’s essentially what you're saying. Do you really think that about yourself?
If you believe in a solution, then you believe that you're going to figure it out. It’s the little things and words that can make a huge difference in your mindset. If you can eliminate negative words such as “can’t” from your vocabulary, then the negative thoughts won’t creep in. Don’t ever think that you can’t do something.
The Autopilot “Can’t” Mindset
What if you're in the autopilot “can't” mindset? I can't read this book. I can't get this promotion. I can't do that. I can't lift this weight. Flip it on its head. Believe that you can.
Belief & will. It’s what I love about lifting weights. You look at a weight you’ve never picked up before, but you believe that you can do it. It’s not “There’s no way I could ever do that.” It’s viewing the glass half full versus half empty. It’s a whole way operating.
Recognize & Shift Your Mind
Your mind will shift in other directions from time to time, but you must take hold and shift it where you want to go. My son AG made 365 on deadlift the other day, then was debating on whether to go 405. It was a big deal.
The reality? He had to believe that he was going to get it when he approached the bar. That if he gave his thousand percent effort, that he was going to fucking get it. And that’s exactly what happened.
Feed off the environment. Feed off the emotion. AG told me he didn’t know if he could do it. He didn’t say he couldn’t do it, but he knew it was borderline. The borderline is where you need to put yourself consistently. That's where the fucking sauce is at. That’s where you build the confidence to believe in yourself time and time again.
What's the limit? There is no limit. If you already put that limit on yourself by that vocabulary, then you're not even going to allow yourself the chance to believe in yourself to win.
If I prepare to be successful, I believe that I’m going to blaze the next opportunity that comes my way. Then, when your wins stack up, the belief in yourself is reinforced, and your confidence skyrockets.
Quit using “can’t.”