There are a few constants in life that we are all subject to. We all have the same amount of time in each day, we each have a past, and we have a certain length of time in the future ahead of us. The person we are today has been shaped by our portfolio of previous relationships and experiences that come from our childhood, family, education, hardships, successes, etc.
Although we all have a past that shapes us, we don't need to let anything from our past serve as a constraint that will dictate our future. Our future is truly a blank canvas and we as the artist have the ability to paint whatever picture or story that we would like. Here are a few additional thoughts on painting the blank canvas:
1) Begin by acknowledging the things in your past that have shaped you. If any of those things serve as a constraint, make the commitment to remove them from the future and leave them in the past. For example, if you were hurt terribly by someone in the past, don't let that be a reason why you can't enjoy normal relationships in the future. Acknowledge it as a constraint and make a commitment to leave it in the past.
2) When staring at the blank canvas of your future, don't let previous levels of success or achievement determine what's next. If you paint a story that is bigger than anything you have done before, all that means is you will have to grow into the person you want to be.
3) Since success in life is a journey and not a destination, think about who you want to be with on your journey. Work with them to paint the canvas together. Not only can you accomplish more with others, but it is a lot more fun when you can share the paint brush and surprise each other with what is possible.
While sharing the paint brush the other day with Joseph Arnold, he said, "Man, I can't wait to read the story of what we are about to do a year from now." This comment reminded me that we are the artist and the author of our future. The best way to have a story worth reading is to be the author and write it yourself!