What Is Potential And How To Reach It

 “The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential. These are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence”. – Confucius

The other day we were talking about potential and it was quite difficult to get a consensus in understanding the definition of potential. The only thing we all agreed on was, that this word was not easy to define. I thought, maybe you are feeling the same way, so I decided to look at some possible definitions to help us understand the broad field of the word potential.



Oxford Dictionary

1.  Mass noun Latent qualities or abilities that may be developed and lead to future success or usefulness.

‘a young broadcaster with great potential’ count noun ‘the potentials of the technology were never wholly controllable’

2. Often potential for/to do something

The possibility of something happening or of someone doing something in the future.

‘pesticides with the potential to cause cancer’


Merriam Webster on potential

  1. Existing in possibility: capable of development into actuality potential benefits
  2. Expressing possibility; specifically: of, relating to, or constituting a verb phrase expressing possibility, liberty, or power using an auxiliary with the infinitive of the verb (as in “it may rain”)


Potential generally refers to a currently unrealized ability. The term is used in a wide variety of fields, from physics to the social sciences to indicate things that are in a state where they are able to change in ways ranging from the simple release of energy by objects to the realization of abilities in people.


My View 

Well, potential is already inside us, we have potential, we have the abilities or qualities to do things, to become someone in the future that we are not in the present. Got it!


How do I know what kind of potential I have?

“To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom” – Socrates

The very first thing to clarify is this question. You need to know yourself, know what you are good at and above all what are the things that move you forward.

According to Meg Selig from the Blog Psychology today there are 6 steps to get to know yourself: Understanding your “VITALS”

  1. Values (helping others, having good health or financial security),
  2. Interests (your passions),
  3. Temperament (your inborn preferences),
  4. Around-the-Clock activities (when do you do what things the best)
  5. Life mission and meaningful goals and finally
  6. Strengths (abilities, skills, and talents).


Where to start?

“The number one benefit of information technology is that it empowers people to do what they want to do. It lets people be creative. It lets people be productive. It lets people learn things they didn’t think they could learn before, and so in a sense, it is all about potential”.  – Steve Ballmer

Start with a piece of paper, put your thoughts in writing following these 6 steps and you will see. Ask yourself why do you want to achieve it. Imagine the feeling of being already there. Take a first small step to get there and do it right now. Check the feeling, is it good? Go for the next! Did you find it too difficult? Take time to assess the situation or talk to someone you trust. Sometimes it is not about what the other person has to offer but to listen to yourself describing the situation. Another thing that helps me always is to ask around using social media: Facebook groups, meetup groups and sometimes just searching on Google or YouTube.

Sometimes we don´t know how much potential is in us until we get trapped or suffer a big loss or any kind of situation in our lives that forces us to go beyond what we know and think we can do. In such cases, we don´t need a trainer or coach or guru. Life itself teaches us how to do it but it is not necessary to get to that point of suffering to get self-conscious and explore our vast possibilities. You can take action right now.

Participate in our next event 19.11.2017 at weXelerate and find out what you have and do what you are well able to achieve, using your potential. See you there.


“One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency”. – Maya Angelou

About the Author

Thomas Dori

Hi! I'm Thomas and I'm the founder of iamgood & host of iamgood VIE. When I was a child  I loved to disassemble everything around me like radios or computers because I wanted to see how things work. This curiosity for technology has become a curiosity for life in general. One important aspect of life, in my opinion, is to constantly learn more about yourself and grow as a person. iamgood is my passion project since it is helping others to do the same. If you want to know more about me let's grab a coffee and have a chat.

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