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  • kaidyn carroll

Almost

The word 'almost' may be classified as the most sorrowful word out there. Empowering inner words of discouragement may leave us 'almost there', yet never making it. Though, as we strive to overcome these deprecating thoughts, the most exhilarating opportunities begin to unveil themselves.

I was almost happy. I almost loved you. I almost won. But I didn't. That's the thing about the word almost, you can be so close-yet not. Whether you made it or not is situational, but the word ‘almost’ entails you're not there. Some people never get past the word almost because they never actually make it. There is something about being so close yet not getting there that can destroy a person. One could argue it's better getting that far than getting nowhere at all. But on the contrary, the pain of knowing you were so close leads you down the road of questioning how one small decision could have changed an entire outcome. Many believe that it's better not getting close at all because then you never had the hope you would get there in the first place. Being so close, having hope, but not making it-that’s what hurts the most. It leaves you stuck dwelling on what could have been.

As much as that hurts, what about the idea of you thinking you were nowhere close when in actuality you were right there? There have been many instances where I have believed I had absolutely no chance, finding out soon after that I was actually only a step away. Unfortunately, usually the only reason we don’t ‘make it’ in these situations is because of self sabotage.

So you may be asking yourself: How can I avoid this? How can I have a balance where I'm not too confident yet not too discouraged? That's a great question actually and I find myself asking that a lot. I've come to realize that I don't think it’s black and white. It's better to be overly confident and fail than to be discouraged throughout the process. Within that confidence comes an individual putting out their vulnerable self and more, knowing if it’s not enough then that’s okay. I think the reason we ‘almost’ get places is because we convince ourselves we don’t deserve to make it or that we aren’t good enough. That internal discouragement seems to be the one small thing preventing us from ‘making it’. Sometimes it’s even subconscious, but it is important to begin to recognize these thoughts in our mind. Becoming aware and soon controlling them can be the one last step to ‘making it’.

Let me give you a specific example: You’re out at a party. You see someone you want to go up to. Observing them all night, you constantly are thinking about approaching them. You almost did, but the thoughts of ‘I don’t want to interrupt them’ and ‘they look busy’ fill your mind-so you don’t. This is just one of the many times you may have faced an ‘almost’ situation. I am not saying to make emotional, impulsive actions, but I am telling you to take action when needed. When giving up halfway through, it leaves the question of: what would have happened if I went up to them? Maybe you would have met your future best friend or maybe it would have been an insignificant encounter of small talk, but that's the thing-you will never know.

As much as I hate admitting it, there have been multiple instances where I have pushed people away because negative discouragement crowded my mind; negative thoughts ranging from ‘they don’t like you’ to ‘they have bad intentions’. It honestly pains me to admit to this self-sabotage present in my life, but at the end of the day everyone encounters it. These are normal thoughts, and it's okay as long as we can recognize them before they consume us.

Listening to this voice in my head has held me back from so many experiences, opportunities, and people. I have had many ideas and began to act on them, but I gave up halfway - I ‘almost’ made it. Why didn’t I make it? I got discouraged.

When I was given the opportunity to teach fitness classes, I continued to push it off. I told myself ‘what if you aren’t good enough?’ and ‘what if people think you're bad?’. It took some time, but eventually I overcame this discouragement in time to still take the opportunity. Taking that opportunity has brought me positive experiences I wouldn't give up for the world. I could have never taught, leaving it as an ‘almost’. Instead I took action, now confidently being able to say ‘I made it’. Learning to turn your ‘I almost’ to ‘I made it’ will lead you to all the incredible opportunities you would have missed out on otherwise.

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