The Best Lie I Every Told

A long time ago I had a class that simply never stopped complaining. They literally complained about everything, and they always complained about the difficulty of the course material. I could never seem to get them to focus on the class assistance or the study resources. They only complained and whined about the difficulty of the class. So one day I noticed that this class (which was a 100 level class) was due to discuss the same topic as my 200 level class. That’s when I got the crazy idea to “lie”.

I showed up to class the next week and began teaching my 100 level class the 200 level material. Every once and a while they would complain but we continued moving forward on pace with my 200 level class. I noticed that they were literally plowing right through the material–they were complaining but they were comprehending. That’s when I applied my final variable: I gave them my 200 level lecture exam. I handed each one of them a copy of the test. Out of 26 students in my course only two scored a grade of ‘C’, while everyone else scored ‘A’s and ‘B’s…and then I told them the truth.

Yoda calls it the Force, but we call it Potential.
Yoda calls it the Force, but we call it Potential.

They were shock–and pretty upset. I thought that they would be excited but they were pretty angry. After we took a bathroom break everyone returned to class and requested to talk about the exam. One student mentioned that she made a “C” on this exam which was the hardest one that they took, yet she had not passed the previous two. Others spoke about how empowered they felt. Overall, they requested if we could maintain some of the same rigor–not all of it, but much more than what they had previously been experiencing.

So what the heck happened?!? They were forced to work within their potential rather than their comfort…THAT’S what happened. If you are not careful you will function based on what you can see, and this is not potential. The muscles of your body will supply strength and energy based on what you see. Your brain will literally give you access to only the muscles that it thinks that you need to perform a task, causing you to under-perform. This is why adrenaline is provided by your body in emergency situations: it overrides your brain so that you activate all of the muscles that have the potential of saving you and not just the muscles that it assumes can perform the job. School is the exact same way, as you will perform at the level that you assume that you can rather than your potential. You must move your mind out of this realm and into the world of true potential! Try the following:

  • Learn to celebrate every victory–no matter how small
  • Win an award–set out to complete the criteria to win an award or title
  • Find someone or find an organization that celebrates you
  • Read about people that overcome obstacles
  • Find music that makes you feel good
  • Find a way to express your happiness

All of these things bring focus to winning even when you are losing. They cause you to get back up when you are knocked back down. They push you beyond your comfort zone and into your no-flex zone. Once you begin this you will be amazed at the new energy, focus, drive and dedication that you will tap into. And the best part about all of it is that it will be just the beginning–and that’s no lie 🙂