Chip Away at Your Blocks to Uncover the Real You

When the famous Italian Renaissance sculptor, painter, and poet Michelangelo was asked how he made his statue of David, he supposedly said that he did not create David from the stone; rather, he saw David in the stone and merely chipped away at the unneeded pieces until David emerged.

That’s a beautiful visual, isn’t it? The idea that the statue was just waiting to be revealed under the layers of stone…

If you’ve ever seen the statue of David in person (or even just in an art book), you know that it’s sheer perfection. There’s no part of the statue that is “less than” or unfitting of the piece as a whole.

What would you say if I told you that you are just as perfect as Michelangelo’s famous sculpture?

Would you tell me I’m crazy? Have I ever seen you in a bad mood? Have I seen your messy house, ill-behaved kids, and sugar-laden diet?

Or maybe you’d just roll your eyes and walk away.

Hear me out! You ARE perfect. Really.

Consider that in your life you are in the same situation that poor David was in before Michelangelo came along with his chisel. You’re encased in your own blocks that are covering up the perfect version of you.

What are your blocks?

Some common blocks include

  • Always doing something the easy way (or half-assed way) even if the hard way would benefit you more
  • Going along with what everyone else wants or says even if you have a different opinion
  • Falling into bad habits because you lack the confidence to step up your game

We all have bad habits, default settings, and sides of ourselves we’re not proud of. For instance, I tend to interrupt people a lot, and I never pass up dessert. I don’t want to act this way, but I feel like the perfect version of me is blocked.

But perfection doesn’t mean flawless. It simply means we’ve chipped away the bits that are not perfectly “us,” whatever that may be.

So, how can you chip away at your own blocks? Grab your hammer and chisel—this will take some muscle!

  • First, write down 3 habits, actions, decisions, etc. that block you from the kind of life you want to live. Perhaps you want to stop smoking or limit your time in front of the TV.
  • Next, for each one of your blocks, write 3 strategies you can implement to remove that block from your life. If you want to quit smoking, you might stop hanging out in situations where there are other smokers, start using a nicotine patch or nicotine gum, and set up your phone to be connected to your bank account so you can transfer $10 into your savings every time you get the urge to light up.
  • Be sure to give yourself time to adjust to a life without those blocks. Remember, bad habits take time to form, so be patient with yourself as you unlearn these behaviors.
  • Finally, when you’re confident that these 3 blocks have been chiseled out of your life for good, choose 3 new blocks to focus on.

Little by little, you can start to uncover the real you. What a work of art!

What blocks are preventing you from being a better version of yourself?

In the comments below, let me know your biggest block and 3 strategies you’ll start implementing this week to chip away at it.

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  1. Megan Gann on August 13, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    My biggest road block has been my anxiety and panic attacks. I’m finally getting medical help for it. I hate medication, but if that’s what it takes, it’s what I’m going to do to be able to function.

    I shop too much, and am putting my ban measures back in place.

    I’m also learning it’s easier to get up and do something rather that thinking about it. If I can make the move to get up – I usually get things done. It’s getting started that is the hard part.

  2. xvavaveganx on August 13, 2012 at 12:18 pm

    Wow, great post! You are right, we all have the perfect version of ourselves that we need to aspire to and to chip away at the blocks to achieve. I have some blocks to chip away at for sure. First would be a lack of confidence in my abilities. I tend to think that I can do things better or I hold back on doing things that I don’t think that I can do to the level that I’d like to achieve.

    Something else that I need to chip away at is actually something that was brought up to me a few weeks ago. It was brought to my attention that I don’t like to accept things from other people or ask for something that I need. We were on a shoot and she went to grab a drink and asked if I wanted one and I said no thanks… then 5 minutes later I went and got my own. This made her point out this pattern to me and now that I’m aware of it, it’s something I’d like to work on because it’s not a bad thing to ask for help or to accept things from other people! I don’t know why I do this and i was blindsided by the observation but it makes so much sense now!

    I’m going to have to think about these strategies for sure 🙂 Thanks for another awesome post and for giving me something to think about!

  3. GlutenFreeHappyTummy on August 13, 2012 at 8:57 am

    this is such a great post. i definitely have some blocks i need to chip away at!