Have you ever seen The Truman Show? It’s a 1998 film that includes Jim Carrey as Truman Burbank, an unaware participant in a television show broadcast worldwide. Truman is the first human to be legally adopted by a corporation, which uses its child as the star of a reality show.
Thousands of cameras are watching Truman’s every move from birth. As an adolescent, Truman experiences a painful separation from his father who supposedly drowned in a violent storm. As a result, Truman develops an acute fear of bodies of water, further distancing himself from the truth about his world. The island he lives on becomes his cage.
I love this movie. It’s an exploration into the boundaries that hinder us from discovering something more – our potential. Truman always had the ability to find out the truth, to flee from his manufactured world. But the truth is it took many years and countless indications of something more to finally push him toward freedom.
What’s Holding Us Back?
Like Truman, we all have beliefs and experiences that might hold us back from discovering our true potential. Many times it can be fear. Other times it can be plain ignorance. Whatever it is, hopefully in this article we’ll discover together what it means to truly discover our potential. While we never may know the full extent of it, we can learn to push our boundaries to better our lives.
I’m convinced that in our finances, we can often get stuck. Habits overwhelm our ability to see past the ordinary and into something extraordinary. I’ve met with many people who want a different job, higher income, or less financial stress but have been disabled by their habits. They’ve worked at the same place or in the same industry for decades, want a way out, but see no alternative.
How To Break Through The Boundaries
So how do we break our habits? What are some ways we can pull ourselves out of a rut and into the future? Here are a few tips:
- Ask your friends. One of the best ways to improve yourself and discover new potential is to ask your friends for advice. Tell them to be brutally honest, and tell you like it truly is! How can you improve? What are some things you are doing now that might be holding you back? What’s healthy? What’s detrimental?
- Face fear. Unhealthy fear can paralyze your lifelong plans. Are you afraid to start a business because you think you’ll fail? Or maybe you’ve tried to write a budget so many times you are afraid to start again. Whatever your fears, face them with determination.
- Question the ordinary. You’re used to doing things in a certain way. If you had to start from scratch, what would you do differently? Don’t judge yourself by the standard of others; judge yourself by how much you are improving.
A Life Without Credit? Really?
One such ordinary behavior that was difficult for me to question was the use of my credit cards. Besides, I paid them off every month and was responsible! What in the world was wrong with that? After reading Dave Ramsey’s Baby Step 2, I thought: wow, people can really live without debt! That was a revelation to me. Could it really be that I was sold on the use of credit cards without a truly valid reason to use them? Everyone differs on their philosophy about the use of credit, so please understand this is just an example.
What Might Be Possible For You?
I leave you with this question: what’s possible for you? Or better yet, what’s not possible? I’m convinced that we all too often hold ourselves back from our full potential. Overcome the sea, set sail, and break through that sky! Won’t you?
Photo from The Truman Show