Why It’s So Important to Believe in Your Magic

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“Great to meet you; what’s your name? What do you do?” We are asked these questions dozens of times a day. And off we go, providing our elevator pitch, the 30-second explanation of who we are, what we do and, occasionally, how we became that way. We all have these narratives, crafted over time, and while we believe they’re for the benefit of others, we actually are telling these stories to ourselves.

“I’m a restaurant manager. I specialize in fine dining. Eventually, I’d love to be a food and beverage director at a hotel, or maybe even open my own restaurant or bar.”

“I’m a real estate broker. I sell residential real estate. I want to be a top salesperson in my office.”

“I’m a screenwriter. I write television shows. One day I’d love to be the head writer on a sitcom.”

“I’m an artist and specialize in graphic design. I’m not Picasso, but I’m good enough to have a steady job.”

Well, who said you aren’t Picasso? Or, for that matter, as talented or hardworking as Picasso?

Manifesting starts with believing. Picasso’s mother said to him, “If you are a soldier, you will become a general. If you are a monk, you will become the Pope.” Instead, he became a painter and eventually became Picasso. But he wasn’t anointed Picasso when he woke up one morning. He became Picasso after years of art school, brushes with severe poverty, decades of hard work, and a bunch of luck. He became Picasso because he believed he could become Picasso. He manifested his creativity because despite every challenge he encountered, he continued to believe in himself and his vision. This same principle applies to your journey.

You must believe.

Ninety-nine percent of the stories we tell ourselves are limiting. While they satisfy our sense of self-importance by explaining our past, they set limits on what we believe is possible for our future. These narratives define how we think about ourselves, which directly impacts what we’re capable of manifesting. But there’s good news: these stories are completely made up. You’re the writer of this script; therefore, you can change the story any time you like. Of course, you have to do the work and recognize the brutal realities, but you must always believe you can.

It’s generally accepted that action is what makes successful people different. What not everyone considers is that actions are preceded by thoughts. And how successful people think is what truly differentiates them from everyone else. Successful people believe. They believe in themselves, they believe in their people, and, most importantly, they believe that no matter what happens, they’ll figure things out; they’ll prevail.

As Steve Jobs said in a 1994 interview with the Silicon Valley Historical Association, “When you grow up you tend to get told the world is the way it is and your life is just to live your life inside the world. Try not to bash into the walls too much. Try to have a nice family life, have fun, save a little money. That’s a very limited life. Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you.”

Pablo Picasso was born in Málaga, on the southern coast of Spain, in 1881. He was the first child of Don José and Doña María. Picasso’s family was middle-class, his father was a painter, and his mother believed in him, so much so that he believed in himself. That’s how he became Picasso.

Alan Philips’s new book, The Age of Ideas, is available October 23, 2018. To read more of Philip's work, head to his website.

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