The Power of Commitment: Say Yes and Change Everything

“When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”

- Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

Two weeks into my 71-day solo row across the Pacific, a steel bolt on my rowing seat snapped in half. It was totally unexpected and created an operational nightmare.

I had already used my 1 spare seat bolt to repair my rudder in another unexpected accident. I was missing the essential part, and it seemed certain the trip was doomed. I would have to call for rescue and abandon my boat – all due to a measly bolt.

In a last ditch effort, I began attempting repairs with whatever I could – scrap wood, tiny bolts, anything that might keep me rowing. Each day as I tested new repairs, I agonized about how the seat was ruining my experience.

But when I left California, I had fully committed to the adventure. And that meant I had to either embrace everything I encountered, or I would fail. Over time, I began to see my frustrating seat wasn’t in the way of me reaching Hawaii – it was the very experience I came for.

Slowly, I admitted to myself that the challenge I faced wasn’t technical, it was mental. The biggest barrier was believing that I could fix the seat at all. And when I made that switch to say YES to the broken seat – just as I had said YES to rowing across an ocean 4 years prior – there was no stopping me. Soon after this realization, I came up with the most surprising solution possible – and it worked perfectly.

You see, when we externalize our obstacles – such as a seat or the bolt – we become reactive. And that completely undermines our creativity. But when we choose the power of YES and tap into an attitude of play, we change everything.

In this Tez Talk, you’ll get simple yet effective techniques to:

Choose progress over perfection and take committed action today

Build your confidence and capacity to overcome whatever challenges arise

Relate to your play-state and enjoy solving the thorniest problems

Connect with your inner child while becoming even more ambitious and successful


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