What makes something impossible?

Everyday we are encountered with seemingly impossible tasks. The world is filled with stories of people performing incredible acts involving superhuman stregnth and resolve.

Aron Ralston the moutaineer who became trapped when an 800 pound boulder fell on his arm and trapped him. Fashioned a tourniquet, cut his arm off below his elbow with a pocket knife then rigged a rope to rappel down a 60-foot cliff face to begin the hike back to civilization.

Why was Aron Ralston able to do the unthinkable. Most say it was is incredible will to live. How can Aron’s experience be applied to our daily business lives.


Webster’s Dictionary defines impossible: as felt to be incapable of being done, attained, or fulfilled.

In a recent ad campaign Adidas told us that: “Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.”

Impossible is a belief system if you believe it to be impossible, guess what you are right.


Being within the limits of ability, capacity, or realization. This definition tells me that everything is possible.

Possible is a belief system if you believe it to be possible, guess what you are right.

If this is true why do we fail to live up to our abilities?

Understanding ourselves

I personally believe that everything is possible. I also believe that those possibilities may not be now. But if we can invision them they will become a reality. The biggest example that comes to mind is the current state of technology. Who would have thought 50 years ago that we would be able to put an exploratory vehicle on the planet Mars. I am pretty confident in thinking that there was at last one person who thought we could. Especially since Mariner 3 made a successful fly by of the planet.

Much like NASA who came up with a vision of space exploration. We have to explore ourselves, understanding our abilities and capacities. When we discover the power that lies with in each of us, impossible is nothing.

What stops us?

What is it that prevents us from being successful in our endeavors.

1. Focus. We lose focus on the target we are trying to achieve. We start to believe all of the nay sayers. When we allow the doubt to sink in the doubt is what becomes the reality not the goal.

2. Fear. What are we afraid of? Most people fear the unkown. The what will happen? No one fears their goals just the transitions they have to go through before they achieve their goals. Remember the first time you jumped off the high diving board as a child. The scariest part was not the jumping off but the climb up. No baseball player is afraid of second base when they steal they are afraid of being caught in the middle. These fears are natural and if you only focus on them your fears will become the reality.

3. Follow-through. This where we all  have our challenges. When we encounter any adversity we want to change the course. We have to plan our work and work our plan. Understanding that anything worth achieving is going to involve some sacrafices. But we have to remain focused on our vision or goal and follow through until complete. The one resounding complaint that we hear from employees about owners or managers is their inability to follow through. They want us to be successful.

Meeting Minutes

Schedule a staff meeting giving everyone intructions that they are to bring evidence of nothing being impossible. Have them research great discoveries or incredible feats of possibilities and bring them in to share with everyone. Together discover what is possible in your business. Always remember impossible is nothing.

Have Fun!


Eric Manuel
Co-Dean Vanguard Business Academy