Successful people understand the difference between can’t and won’t. There is a lot of power in words. They can strengthen and empower us. They can build an army or start a war. Think about the words you use to describe yourself, and what you are capable of. Do your words say victim or victor?
Think about the words can’t and won’t. How often do you say I can’t when you really mean won’t? Can’t means that you are physically not capable while won’t means that you are choosing not to.

I can't go up to a perfect stranger and introduce myself. Yes you can. You are physically capable of walking up to someone, sticking out your hand and saying “Hi, I'm Sharmen Lane, what's your name?” Many will say, “I can't do that.” Yes you can. You may have to dig deep and find the courage in you, but you are physically capable of it.

In business or your personal life the words you use can make a powerful statement. I once had a woman in sales tell me she couldn’t walk in to potential client offices and ask them for business. That’s when it dawned on me that there is a tremendous difference between can’t and won’t. I responded to this woman with “You can’t. So you are telling me that you are not physically capable of walking to the door, sticking out your hand, grabbing the knob, turning it, pulling the door open and walking through the opening?’ Of course with resistance she replied with “Well, yes I can do THAT”. That is the difference between can’t and won’t.

This isn’t to say it will be easy. It may be difficult. It may require some extreme mental discipline, or having a talk with yourself to make you do something you previously “couldn’t”. I never said it was easy, and sometimes you will have to psych your self up and literally force yourself do it. But you can. As soon as you take responsibility and the empowering position you will be amazed at the things you can and will do.

The next time you hear yourself saying "I can’t…” stop for a moment and ask yourself, it is really that I can’t, that I’m physically not capable, or is it that I won’t? If you determine that you could but you choose not too then it’s wont. At that point you can choose to change your way of thinking, step up to the plate and do it!

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Author's Bio: 

Sharmen Lane is an Author, speaker, radio host, and life coach. She has trained, managed, and coached thousands of individuals on what it takes to get what they want. She currently has several seminars, The 7 Secrets to Success, Success Made simple (easy as ABC), the 3 C’s To Success, to name a few. She was interviewed on "America's Leadership Tribute" show produced by NPR that was broadcast on all American Airlines and US Airways flights worldwide. Sharmen has her own live internet radio program “Success Made Simple” on and recently signed a one year contract to continue the show through July 2008. She wrote the book titled “The 7 Secrets to Create Your Fate”, which is a personal growth, self development book written to give everyone who reads it the motivation, inspiration and determination to go after what they want with passion. It is made up of her own life experiences or those she has interviewed or coached. She has personally gone from being a manicurist to millionaire and she did it by using all the principles described in her book.