Why Are You Waiting for Permission?

Your presence is all the permission that you need​


Your computer password.

You are the only one who knows it. It’s unique. Like your irises and your fingerprints. It is all the permission that you need.

Your password is your pass. It is permission into whatever computer system that you use. Hopefully, you have different passwords for your different systems because that keep the bad guys guessing.

Every time you use your password to get into your computer, it should remind you: You already have all the permission that you need.

Every time you use your password to get into your computer, it should remind you: You already have all the permission that you need.

Permission to do what?

To recover. To heal. To forgive. To be honest with yourself. To grieve. To move on. To step out and begin your next chapter. To create your art. To be yourself. To be part of things even though you sometimes feel awkward. To not have the answers. To change your beliefs. To grow up, but also never grow old. To play with toys, no matter how old you are.

Permission” is only 10 small letters, but it is the difference between waiting for life to happen, and living the life that you want.

You. Have. Permission.

There, you have it. Print it off, write it down, tattoo it onto your soul. You have only one life and it is far too short. Take permission because the world needs you to be more of who you can be.

Procrastination is nothing more than avoiding permission. We make excuses. We delay and we wait. We do the easy thing instead of the right thing. Procrastination is motivated by fear or complacency. These combine to shrink you and your world into what is safe and predictable.

You don’t need permission to do what you have always been doing, because you know what you are allowed to do. Safe. Predictable. Life shrinks. Hope erodes. Possibilities elude you. Your life is over before you even began to live.

But life does not have to be this way.

The Six Permissions

Permission is not empty positivism: No, you can not be anything that you set your mind to.

Permission is not empty positivism: No, you can not be anything that you set your mind to. You won’t grow taller, change your history, become an astronaut (unless you have trained for most of your life), or easily achieve your dreams. You have physical limitations and you are wise if you respect them.

Permission is a compound word – Per/Mission. It literally means “Go by letting go.” Your presence as a human being is all the permission that you need. You have all that you need to take your place.

Taking your place means that you have a right to be here, you have permission to get dirty and do your part to improve your corner of the world.

1. You have permission to listen: Listen to your your inner “Go.” What is the part of you that wants to go and where do you want to end up?

2. You have permission to drop  your baggage. Letting go is a reminder that you must travel lite. If you continuously add to your baggage, you will become weighted down.

3. You have permission to be a giver, to enrich others. As soon as you let go, you are able to pass your gift to others. Giving your gift away means that you are open for more experience and for a richer, more interesting life.

4. You have permission use your power to let go. No one ever said that parachuting is passive: it takes guts to let go. Skiing is not passive, because you need confidence to go where the mountain takes you. Learning is also not passive. Learning means that you listen, become challenged by, and then later challenge the material. It takes courage to let go, to trust, and to learn. Let go and embrace the courage.

5. You have permission to grow. Your current stage of life may feel comfortable. It is what you know and you know what to do. But a stage of life becomes like an old pair of shoes: it becomes worn out and full of holes. Like your shoes, you grow old when you grow stale. It’s exciting when you get a new pair of shoes, but you have to remember one thing: You don’t have to fit into the new shoes, the new shoes need to fit you. Let go of one stage of growth and embrace the next will make your life more interesting.

6. You have permission to not know what to do. When you don’t know what to do, let go. See #5.

Ask yourself: Why do you need more permission than you already possess?”

Michael Hyatt tells an Aesop fable about a farmer who rented a donkey to take some of his produce to sell. Along the way, a traveler joined the farmer and his donkey. After traveling for some time, they stopped for a rest.

The sun blazed and there were no trees within miles, so the traveler rested in the donkey’s shadow. The farmer was upset. He insisted that he’d only rented the donkey, not the donkey’s shadow. Using the shadow wasn’t part of the deal.

The traveler explained that use of the donkey assumed use of the it’s shadow. The shadow is part of the donkey.

If you rent the donkey, you’ve got permission to use his shadow.

“If you’ve been invited, that’s all the permission you need. Just go.” Michael Hyatt

Right now, you have the password: To your computer. To your future. Will you use it? Ask yourself: Why do you need more permission than you already possess?”


If you enjoyed this article, you will want to see some of my other work:

How Will Traveling Lite Open You Up to the World?

Recovery and Learning to Respect Your Limits

Recovery and Learning to Live With Risk

I write articles about wellness, leadership, parenting and personal growth. My hope is to deliver the best content I can to inspire, to inform and to entertain. Sign up for my blog if you want to receive the latest and best of my writing. If you like what I have to say, please share my work with your friends.

Lastly, if you like my writing, you can click here to vote for my page on Psych Central’s list of mental health blogs.

Keep it Real

Photo by Petra Bensted

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