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The Crime of Untapped Potential

Sometimes I feel distant from the world. Like the gap between who I’m being and who I want to be is so great that I don’t want there to be any witnesses to this crime of untapped potential. So I hold back, obscuring my imperfections and shortcomings behind a veil of silence.

On the surface, reversing this trend seems like a question of discipline. There are a million things I could do to improve, it’s just a matter of doing them. But nobody grows from the crack of a whip. You don’t ready yourself for change by hardening yourself where you are. Nor can you simply stretch a seedling into a full grown tree. You can only give something what it needs to thrive, or not.

Untapped potential is not an artifact of being under-disciplined, it’s an artifact of being under-loved. It is the result of not loving yourself where you are (sapping yourself of the sunlight and water that fuels your growth) until your current self feels so alien from your desired self that you no longer believe in your ability to close the gap between the two.

The crime of untapped potential is not a daring heist gone awry, but a habit of focusing on the things you are not, instead of leveraging the things you already are.

I may not be ready to write a best-selling book, or even the perfect ending to this little blurb; but I can focus on something that matters to me, look at it in a new light, and share what I see. And maybe, just maybe, let that be enough for today; sowing the seeds of self-love along the way.

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