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THE POTENTIAL II: Realising Limits

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It was the best of times. His luck could not have been better. Yes, he was in debt, but that day he recouped his losses. That day he had made 25 000 from betting at the casino. That day, he only needed 25 000 more and his debt would be no more. There was no need to debate the issue. All he had to do was visit the casino again the next day and win some more.

Then it was the worst of times. For the next day, he left the casino the way he'd gone in the previous day: drained of both hope and money. Or not quite so. The previous morning he was hopeful he could pay his debt, the previous night he was convinced he could. And now he was certain he couldn't. He was right where he started out. He had had potential, had had energy, and it had ruined him.

Potential energy is that which an object possesses by virtue of its location or position. Everything on Earth has potential, yes, everyone. And oftentimes the problem is not whether or not the potential is harnessed, or how much of it is; oftentimes, the problem is how it is harnessed.

The problem is stopping. It is so easy to get carried away, to focus on the hopes and dreams and best case scenarios, to expect the good times to never end. But they do.

Newton had observed that a body continued with uniform speed in a straight line unless acted upon by a force. Yes, everything that goes up eventually comes down- even age. And yes, every now and then one has to apply the brakes or risk loss of control and eventual collision- and possibly death. Yes, it is when the road is smooth that one risks skidding- yet they are few who bank their paths, who keep on the bank and in the bank.

Put another way, the higher you go, the greater your potential energy relative to the earth (E = m.g.h); something not undesired. However, the higher you go, the greater your centre of gravity- and with it, your chances of falling, of floating off into space, and of catching fire (for the higher you go the hotter it ultimately becomes); something not desired.

Hence the aim is to realise how far one can safely go and stay within it. Yes, it is good to take risks and multitask. But not beyond one's carrying capacity, not beyond one's resources, and definitely not beyond one's intellect. Potential is the energy per unit charge; put in so many charges and your potential becomes infinitesimal- however infinite your energy.

And perhaps the best way to stay within one's limits is to MIND ONE'S BUSINESS. For potential makes and breaks, heals and kills, lifts and plunges

You see, if any man would focus on his objectives and ignore every other thing, he would not only succeed, he would enjoy. And as always, I shall give further examples. But in the next article: The POTENTIAL: Minding your Own Business.

In the meantime, break forth, start your own business, and stay safe, realise limits.

Ayokunle Adeleye.

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of Ayokunle Ayk Fowosire and do not necessarily reflect those of The Nigerian Voice. The Nigerian Voice will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."

Articles by Ayokunle Ayk Fowosire