“You can do anything you want to do!” True or False?

David Allen

In coaching, speaking, and writing I am passionate about helping people find meaning and purpose in life and leadership.

As a born cheerleader, I want to shout from the rooftops, You can do anything, don’t hold back!

But is that a true or false statement?

As discouraging as it may sound, you and I were not created to do everything. We were created uniquely, with specific strengths and talents to share with the world. We were not created to make ourselves something we are not. For example, I may be a marathon finisher, but never a finalist. I was born with turtle speed and endurance, not a rabbit pace that gets the trophy. I am okay with that. I will make the best time I can, but I don’t plan on wasting extraordinary amounts of time trying to increase my speed. Why, because I understand physics and I have accepted my physical boundaries. Some people were made to run, others were made to jog or walk.

Here are three reasons that will make you happy you can’t do everything:

  1. Too many choices make it impossible to get started. This is actually called, “overchoice” or choice overload. 1 Too many options will paralyze you in and make you indecisive about your future.
  1. Trying to do it all will make you ineffective. In the February issue of Psychology today, research showed that multitasking was not only ineffective but dangerous. The obvious example is texting and driving. But the same applies to our professional and personal lives. When our time and attention is divided, so is our soul. Zig Ziglar said, “Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days.” The bottom line: You can’t go two directions at one time and be successful.
  1. If you could do anything, you don’t need others. That is a very lonely place to be. God created you for community and collaboration. No one was meant to walk in life or leadership alone. When you know what it is you were designed to contribute to the world, you can partner with others to make the world a better place to live.

If you are reading this blog and still feel unsure about what you were created for, start with the Map Your Message exercise, from Michael Hyatt on my last blog post.

I would love to hear your thoughts on, “You can do anything you want to do!” True or False?  Please don’t hesitate to share your stories or comments below.

If you found this blog helpful or encouraging, it would be the greatest complement to me if you shared it on your social networks. Thank you for helping build our community!

In Life and Leadership,


1 Whitmore, Paul. (2001) Choice Overload. http://www-psych.stanford.edu/~wit/CS547talk/choice01.html

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