The 54th Deadline: Burning Your Boats


The 54th Deadline: Regardless of failure or success, you learn. Life grants people so many chances to get it right.


Lately, I have been listening to a lot of motivational speakers. I have listened to all kinds of motivational speakers from various backgrounds, including Les Brown and Tony Robbins to name a few. In fact, I listen to a motivational speaker every day. I have done so for months now. I am glad I picked up this random ritual of mine. They are all great in their own ways. Ultimately, I listen to them as opposed to dwelling o

n negative thoughts. I spent way too many years feeling ashamed and hopeless, and I refuse to succumb to such experiences again if I can help it. God forbid.

But yeah, there is something Tony Robbins says I like in particular, and that is the concept of “burning your boats.” And what he means by this is simple — you cannot give yourself a way out. You either succeed or die trying. In my current situation, I definitely can relate in more ways than one.

The more I examine my life from the very beginning, the more I realize how many times I left a safety boat in the harbor. Every attempt of trying to venture forth into new territory often ended up in me being a coward and retreating from both good and bad possibilities. I had the means of escaping, so the skittish part of my personality took advantage. It was safer to do so instead of risking it.

But nothing ventured equates to nothing gained, right?

As I face another crossroads in my current circumstances, I feel compelled to burn every boat behind me. It is something of which I am both scared and implored to do so by that inner voice inside of my head that tells me, “You have to do something drastic!”

All or Nothing

I hate the mediocrity in my life in lots of ways. And by choosing the “safe” route around the corner, this mediocrity will no doubt continue. Deep down, I know I have been underplaying my actual capabilities. I am wasting my potential by being caught in life’s messy web of setbacks and dangling triumphs. To attain some semblance of “success,” I must do more. I must put myself in such a situation that would force me to step up my game.

By all means, is it the smartest move to do something sketchy and unpredictable as opposed to going through the motions? As someone who has done the latter for most of his life, something has got to give.

I hate repeating myself. I sound like a broken record. I need my life to dance to a different tune — one with a positive and uplifting beat.

So it has come down to this. I have to see my escape route go up in flames. The one holding the matches is none other than me…

I control my own destiny.

“Hope is my catalyst.” — Nhan Pham

Edited with Grammarly Premium.


Originally published at The 54th Deadline.