A few years ago, I was exploring a social media platform, and that thing happened where they suggest that you follow/friend/connect to someone from your past. In this case, the suggestion was that I connect with a woman I knew in middle and high school years ago.
Now this individual was what we would call today a “mean girl” and also a “frenemy.” She would be nice to your face, super nice in front of teachers and parents; and yet, when you were alone with her, you knew that not only was she totally sure that she was better than you, but she was plotting how to take you down so that you would know it too.
So there I was, staring into the abyss of my laptop screen and looking at her profile. She had placed a single sentence in the “bio” section, and it read:
“If you think you can, then you can. And if you think you can’t, then you are probably right.”
That sentence has stuck with me ever since. But it has only been recently that I’ve really begun to understand it for what it is: an excellent example of a saying that sounds true, real, and hardcore…but is actually just a big pile of BS.
Because, of course, the truth is more nuanced than that. You and I are not binary creatures. We are not a 1 or 0, on or off. When it comes to life – but especially the tough stuff, the gut wrenching, down on your knees at 4am stuff – that’s definitely not how we work.
More often it’s a case of thinking that we cannot do it, but knowing that we have to try anyway, and so we just go for it even though we are totally scared. That, by the way, is called courage.
Sometimes it’s a case of thinking that we can do it, trying our best, and falling flat on our faces. That, my friends, is what we refer to as learning.
At times we feel numb and dumb and frozen in place – unsure of what we think or feel – knowing that something has to happen and hoping that we can summon up enough of something to take one little step. That, by the way, is what faith looks like.
And of course, on occasion, we are 100% sure that no way, no how, can this be accomplished or achieved – not by us, not today, not ever. But then…lo and behold: we do it! Imagine that.
No, that little statement couldn’t be further from the truth about who we are and what we really need to handle the tough stuff.
When we talk about enchantment and magic it is really easy to assume that we are talking about some airy-fairy, Vaseline coated camera lens way of looking at life that ignores all the sharp angles and tough punches we encounter in the “real world.” That assumption is really anemic. We’d do better to look at history and myth where those who have, since time out of mind, practiced the ways of enchantment: Priests and Priestesses, and Witches, Wizards, and Prophets — who do so in the name of better understanding and engagement with life right here and now.
To live an enchanted life is not to run away from life, but to gallop towards what is most real. Enchantment is what allows us to see that catty, clever, sentence for the BS that it really is because enchantment will always show you not only what is most possible, but what is most real.
And what is real is that sure, sometimes we do feel like we cannot do it, and sometimes we think we can’t, and as it turns out there are lots of things we think and feel that at the end of the day don’t hold water.
What is also real is that there are always choices, always options, always fresh starts and new pages to turn, and new roads to travel and – thank the heavens – many ways to travel them.
What is most real is that you have ways and means available to you that are 100% unique to who you are – they cannot be repeated or replicated by anyone – and for that reason alone no one gets to determine what you can or cannot do.
Those of us who think we can’t are not probably or otherwise right. We just need to think a little harder, dig a little deeper, and see with a little more clarity, feel with a little more heart. That is exactly what living an enchanted life helps us do – enchantment is not afraid of the tough stuff. It is made for it.
About the Author: Briana Saussy
Hi, I’m Briana! I am a writer, teacher, and spiritual counselor, and I am part of a growing community of soulful seekers, people who are looking for wholeness, holiness and healing – for better, more rewarding lives.
The best way to work with me and begin living an enchanted life right here and now is to register for my year long course of fairy tales and magic – Spinning Gold.