Do You SEE Your Potential? You are Amazing!

You know how certain days or weeks seem to follow a theme?  Mine lately has been seeing and encouraging potential and trusting intuition to bring clarity in the right things at the right time.


This morning a friend and colleague, Julia Neiman, asked just the right question in a private Facebook group I’m in (Hey, Navigators! *waves*) that hit me along with several other conversations and circumstances lately to bring clarity to something I’ve been struggling with defining.

She asked as a parent what is my biggest fears are around my children’s job/career future.  And it triggered a crazy long response that both energized me and clarified for me exactly why it is that I love what I’m doing through my own business.

It boiled down to this (both in my children and those I work with and serve):

Here’s what I see in you.  Can you look at yourself through my eyes for a moment?

I see your potential.  YOU are freakin’ amazing. 

YOU were created with a mission.  YOU have people you are here to serve.

YOU can make a difference in the world.

My mission is to help you do that.

And I am incredibly blessed and excited to be able to be a small part of you being able to get your message out and reach the people who need you so that you can do what you’re here to do!!!  (Yes, I know I put three exclamation marks there–I’m tempted to add many more, that’s how excited this gets me.)

Here’s some of what I shared in the group:

My main goal in my children’s education is to teach them HOW to think, and HOW to learn for themselves, not WHAT to think, or some list of 100 specific things they have to know to pass some test, so equipping them with the tools/strategies they need to become productive adults, and stay confident and determined to do what they want to do with their lives, instead of caving in to what society tells them.

Any other choice or goal is immoral through my eyes because what the world needs is passionate people who’ve come alive by doing what they were created to do, and serving those they’re here to serve through life and business.  To push our children (or ourselves) towards any other path is to deprive the world of what is so desperately needed to create positive change.

So planting that spark and confidence in them that not only CAN they do what they most want to in life, but they MUST to do that for the sake of those around them is my biggest hope and fear — can I do that? I don’t know. I hope so. I’m going to do everything I can to make it happen and that includes every single day trying to make myself a better example for them and when I fail, showing them how to get back up and keep going.

Every child (and person on this planet–this means YOU) has the potential to be the person who changes the world for one person or for many and I don’t care if that’s through becoming an activist or politician who makes things happen, or scientist or healer who cures disease or eases pain, a teacher or coach who serves as a rock in the pond creating ripples of amazing change through the clients they help and the lives those clients touch, an athlete who inspires us with their drive and raw talent, or creating the next generation of video games that brings fun, or beautiful art or moving music that adds beauty and emotion to our lives… if it’s what wakes them up inside, it’s what they should be doing.

As someone who lost that and is still rediscovering it, that’s my fear for my children. I look back at the people who tried to crush it in me and I wonder (1) how can I keep those people away from my kids (and ALL kids AND help those kinds of people realize what they’re doing and stop it!), and (2) how can I help my children find the strength and purpose to not let any negativity discourage them.  How do I teach them to keep going after what they want when the world throws everything at them to stop them? For that matter, how do we as adults do that? (If we can model it, that’s all they really need–seeing with their own eyes the possibility, if they can see that possibility, they can create it for themselves.)

I fear the infection of the virus of no goals, no dreams, and no motivation that’s taken hold of so many people. Low expectations for themselves because no one in their lives stepped up to hold them to a higher standard and tell them how freakin’ amazing they are and what potential they’ve got.

That’s what I want for my children, and for the world around me.

Do the work you’re here to do. Find happiness in it. Create positive change in the world.

P.S.  Did you catch that?  YOU ARE AMAZING.  Don’t leave your potential inside you.  Do what makes you come alive and turn your potential into reality.  The world is waiting for you.

Spread the Love


  1. YOu are amazing, Michelle, and this is a timely post for me. Thank you very much.
    Amy recently posted… Radish Sammages: a simple-but-perfect summer lunchMy Profile

    1. Hey Amy, I love when timing is just right. :)
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… How to Get Your Momentum Back When It DisappearsMy Profile

  2. Wow, you did an amazing job of taking all those thoughts from yesterday and creating this awesome blog post. We have the same goal for kids everywhere. I read and shared a story today about a mom who was not happy with the special ed school her autistic son was in. They told her would never learn more than the basics and would need special care his whole life.

    She saw how they were putting up block walls to any potential he might have and killing his spirit. She took him out of school and provided him with opportunities to be immersed in the things he is passionate about. Turns out he has an IQ higher than Einstein and at 11 years old entered college, is the youngest astrophysicist on the planet and is working on a problem, that if he solves it, will win him a Nobel Prize. How awesome is that?

    So Michelle, your concerns for your children and your clients are valid and kudos to you for talking about it out aloud. You are a beacon of light in a sometimes dark place.

    Great post Michelle. Thank you.
    Julia Neiman recently posted… Making Difficult Choices in BusinessMy Profile

    1. Anytime I write something that long, my brain goes, “Hey, blog post!” LOL

      That’s AWESOME, Julia! That’s the spirit we’ve got to have as parents.

      And I love that you’ve opened the conversation because we need to be talking more about this — for our children, ourselves, and the world. <3
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… What’s the Secret to Life Balance?My Profile

  3. Gee Michelle, I wished I was as good with words as you are and able to verbalize (write in this case) so succinctly about my feelings.I leave so many words unsaid.

    Your beliefs and goals and determination is what makes others follow you.

    It would be great if more people had your desire to help young ones and I know Julia Neiman is as dedicated as you are in helping those who need inspiration and motivation.

    Thank you both of you for sharing this topic.

    1. One day I just decided to stop leaving things unsaid and started writing and sharing it. :) I think that’s the key. Lots of practice and it gets better/easier. It doesn’t always come out quite the way I want it (this was draft… oh 12… and edited down from 2500 to about 1000 words, so know that what looks like good with words may just be decent editing — ha ha).

      I’m inspired by Julia’s passion for helping youth. My focus through business is a bit different but so connected in what we see in others.
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… Five Creative Ways to Find Your Next Big Blog Post IdeaMy Profile

  4. You share bits of your personal life to inspire, motivate and educate. Yep! I’m calling you an educator. When my daughter was in high school she came home one day and told me her teachers had “tapioca” for brains. When she turned in her work for a creative writing assignment, her teacher called her into the office and wanted to know if she needed to see a psychologist. My daughter, at times, her conversation and writing takes on the tone of a Stephen King.

    I’m confident your children will dig deep, way deep, into their potential.
    Adalia John recently posted… 21 Affirmations for Personal ResponsibilityMy Profile

  5. Thanks for the inspirational message Michelle. BTW, you are awesome too :-)
    Neil Butterfield recently posted… Iodine: Is salt really bad for you?My Profile

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