THE POTENTIAL: Realising Limits.
It was the best of times. His luck could not have been better. Yes, he
was in debt, but that day he recouped his losses. That day he had made
$25,000 from betting at the casino. That day, he only needed $25, 000
more and his debt would be no more. There was no need to debate the
issue. All he had to do was visit the casino again the next day and
win some more.
Then it was the worst of times. For the next day, he left the casino
the way he’d gone in the previous day: drained of both hope and money.
Or not quite so. The previous morning he was hopeful he could pay his
debt, the previous night, he was convinced he could. And now he was
certain he couldn’t. He was right where he had started out. He had had
potential, had had energy, and it had ruined him.
Potential energy is that which an object possesses by virtue of its
location or position. Everything on Earth has potential, yes,
everyone. And oftentimes, the problem is not whether or not the
potential is harnessed, or how much of it is; oftentimes, the problem
is how it is harnessed.
The problem is stopping. It is so easy to get carried away, to focus
on the hopes and dreams and best-case scenarios, to expect the good
times to never end. But they do.
Newton had observed that a body continues with uniform speed in a
straight line unless acted upon by a force. Yes, everything that goes
up eventually comes down- even age. And yes, every now and then, one
has to apply the breaks or risk loss of control and eventual
collision- and possibly death. Yes, it is when the road is smooth that
one risks skidding- yet they are few who bank their paths, who keep on
the bank and in the bank.
Put another way, the higher U go, the greater Ur potential energy
relative to the earth (E = m.g.h); something not undesired. However,
the higher U go, the greater Ur centre of gravity- and Ur chances of
falling, of floating off into space, and of catching fire (for the
higher U go the hotter it ultimately becomes); something not desired.
Hence the aim is to realize how far one can safely go and to stay within
it. Yes, it is good to take risks and multitask. But not beyond one’s
carrying capacity, not beyond one’s resources, and definitely not
beyond one’s intellect. Potential is the energy per unit charge; put
in so many charges and Ur potential becomes infinitesimal- however
infinite Ur energy.
And perhaps the best way to stay within one’s limits is to MIND YOUR
BUSINESS. For potential makes and breaks, heals and kills, lifts and
You see, if any man would focus on his objectives and ignore every
other thing, he would not only succeed, he would enjoy. And as always,
I shall give further examples. But in the next article: The POTENTIAL:
Minding your Own Business.