One of the most beautiful things about stars is that they shine even in daylight, when we can’t see them. Similarly, our greatest talents and abilities sometimes lay hidden in plain sight, and it can take another person’s perspective to remind us of just how much we are capable of achieving.

The 20th-Century writer Napoleon Hill once said, “Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” So even if our dreams seem slightly out of reach, there is great wisdom in remembering that many men and women have overcome the same challenges that we face now.

Explorer Christopher Columbus wrote in his memoirs of the importance of taking risks to achieve greatness. He said, “You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.” The horizon is bright, we just need the courage to cut anchor and begin sailing.

Many great minds tell us that the secret is simply getting started:

German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe said “Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it.  Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”

Henry David Thoreau advised us to “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams.  Live the life you have imagined.”

And Confucius theorized “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”

So often in life our success is a result of the mind instead of outer circumstances. As Buddha offered 3,000 years ago, “The mind is everything. What you think you become.” So when we keep our mind occupied with positive imagery and self-supporting thoughts, all of a sudden we glimpse what we can accomplish.  

In creating a life of value, Albert Einstein wisely told us, “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” When we let go of expectations and focus only on doing the best we can in the given moment, the path is cleared.

Philosopher Lao Tzu reflected, “When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.” In other words, only by giving ourselves up do we become whole.