Everything is Figureoutable
Marie Forleo

Everything is Figureoutable - Book Summary

A pragmatic philosophy of self-empowerment

Duration: 25:35
Release Date: May 11, 2024
Book Author: Marie Forleo
Category: Motivation & Inspiration
Duration: 25:35
Release Date: May 11, 2024
Book Author: Marie Forleo
Category: Motivation & Inspiration

In this episode of 20 Minute Books, we are diving into "Everything is Figureoutable" by Marie Forleo. Released in 2019, this book stands as a beacon of optimism, offering a resilient philosophy that merges can-do spirit with actionable insights. Marie Forleo equips readers with the tools needed to dismantle self-limiting beliefs, push past excuses, and transform fear into a motivating ally.

Forleo, a celebrated entrepreneur and a charismatic coach, has shaped her career around empowering individuals. She hosts "The Marie Forleo Podcast" and "MarieTV," and runs the acclaimed B-School training program. Her influence in promoting personal and business growth earned her a spot on Oprah Winfrey's SuperSoul 100 list of visionaries and influential leaders.

"Everything is Figureoutable" is designed for anyone on the spectrum from pessimism to pragmatism. Whether you're looking to shift your mindset from negative to positive, or you're a pragmatist aiming to scale new heights of achievement, this book offers valuable strategies to break through barriers and realize your potential. Join us as we explore how to make the impossible possible, proving that in Marie Forleo's words, indeed, everything is figureoutable.

Discover the power of believing you can figure anything out

Imagine a young Marie Forleo, eyes wide with curiosity, watching her mother tackle every conceivable household challenge without flinching. The scene isn't one of high-tech tools and easy fixes. It's the 1980s, and resources are scarce. There's no internet, no YouTube tutorials, just raw challenges staring back at her resourceful mother. Her secret weapon wasn't exotic tools or special training; it was a robust, unwavering belief that "everything is figureoutable."

This phrase — coined from her mother's relentless spirit — isn't merely a catchy mantra; it's a transformative philosophy that Marie incorporated into every facet of her life. This attitude serves as a reminder that with determination, creativity, and persistence, any problem can be solved, be it personal, professional, or trivial.

This inspiring concept guides us through various challenges, stressing that obstacles aren't dead ends, but puzzles awaiting solutions. Whether fixing a broken radio or navigating a career change, the belief that you can figure things out fuels perseverance and opens a world of possibilities. Let's delve deeper into how adopting this mindset can convert life's impossibilities into manageable action steps.

Turning imagination into reality: Marie Forleo's journey of self-discovery and success

Consider the remarkable capacity we possess as humans to transform fleeting thoughts into tangible outcomes. This capability resembles a form of magic, where an imaginative spark can evolve into a significant life decision or a groundbreaking innovation.

Marie Forleo embodies this transformative power. Her narrative begins in the late 1990s, post-college, at a time when her career path seemed uncertain. Marie's resume was eclectic — she had tried her hand at roles ranging from an assistant trader at the New York Stock Exchange to a fashion assistant at Mademoiselle magazine. Despite her experiences, fulfillment eluded her.

The turning point came unexpectedly when she stumbled upon an article about life coaching. Though the profession was nascent, something about the concept resonated deeply with her. It sparked a profound realization: this was her calling. The allure of shaping lives, guiding personal and professional growth, was irresistible. Even when a promising opportunity at Vogue beckoned, Marie chose to decline, opting instead to forge her path as a life coach.

Today, Marie Forleo is a name synonymous with influence and inspiration, reaching millions through her online platforms and training programs. Her journey illustrates that ideas alone don't materialize into successes; they require cultivation through relentless effort and resilience.

Marie faced considerable hurdles: self-doubt, hefty debts, and years of juggling side jobs, from bartending to waitressing. Her success narrative was not wrought overnight but was a gradual ascent marked by perseverance and determination.

The essence of Marie’s philosophy, "everything is figureoutable," speaks to both the inspirations and the grit required in converting dreams into realities. It acknowledges that while the path is strewn with challenges, each obstacle presents an opportunity to learn, adapt, and advance. It's a journey of encountering problems and engaging with them decisively, paving the way for achieving our most ambitious goals.

How our beliefs shape our actions and outcomes

It's a widespread misconception that sheer positive thinking can effortlessly resolve our challenges. While optimism is powerful, it's not a cure-all. On the flip side, negative thinking can amplify our difficulties, pushing us towards inactivity and resignation.

The reality is, our beliefs heavily influence our potential — both what we attempt and what we achieve. If we're ensnared by the idea that something is beyond our reach, we're unlikely to even make an attempt. This mindset not only restricts our endeavors but it also predetermines our failures — not due to lack of ability, but because we limit ourselves with our self-imposed boundaries.

Consider this scenario: you're struggling financially and believe that you're inherently bad with numbers. With this mindset firmly in place, you're less likely to engage seriously with your finances or explore strategies for improvement. By never challenging this belief, you inadvertently ensure your financial situation remains unchanged.

Conversely, embracing a belief in our capabilities can dramatically alter our approach. For example, when Marie Forleo ventured into dance instruction, despite initial doubts and feeling out of her element, her persistence led to progress and eventual confidence. This transformation wasn't just about mastering dance moves — it was about challenging and overcoming her initial self-doubt.

Our beliefs about what's achievable extend beyond personal capabilities to our perceptions of the world around us. Whether you think a job promotion is within your reach, for instance, significantly impacts your motivation to pursue it and, ultimately, your actions towards achieving it.

In essence, the beliefs we hold act as self-fulfilling prophecies, shaping our behavior and influencing our successes or failures. Recognizing this can empower us to adopt more constructive beliefs, thereby enhancing our potential and enriching our life experiences.

Embracing "everything is figureoutable" to dismantle self-limiting beliefs

We all harbor doubts about our capabilities and the opportunities available to us. These self-limiting beliefs can stifle our potential, whether it’s the fear of not having enough talent or the assumption that opportunities have dried up. The traditional method of countering these beliefs—one by one, with positive affirmations—can be overwhelming and impractical.

Instead, there's a simpler, more encompassing belief that can act as a powerful countermeasure: “everything is figureoutable.” This mindset serves as a universal remedy, targeting the root of almost all self-limiting beliefs—that the challenges we face are insurmountable.

At its core, every self-limiting belief implies that a particular issue cannot be resolved. For instance, believing you can't enter a new relationship because you're 'too old' is inherently resigning to the idea that your age is an unsolvable barrier.

However, by adopting the mindset that “everything is figureoutable,” we can immediately reframe these obstacles as challenges with solutions, even if those solutions are not immediately apparent. This doesn’t just create a shift in perspective; it actively propels us towards seeking out those solutions, ensuring we approach problems with a proactive mindset rather than a defeatist one.

“Everything is figureoutable" can be seen more as a pragmatic approach than an empirical truth. Its value doesn't lie in its ability to withstand scientific scrutiny, but in its power to drive us towards relentless problem-solving and to prevent premature surrender.

This belief acts like a psychological Swiss Army knife, ready at a moment's notice to cut through the tangles of doubt and hesitation. Take, for instance, Marie Forleo’s incident at the airport. Faced with the prospect of missing an important flight due to a check-in deadline, she initially despaired. But by reminding herself that “everything is figureoutable,” she swiftly shifted gears from panic to solution-finding. The result was a quick pivot to purchasing carry-on bags and bypassing the need for checked luggage altogether, thereby catching her flight just in time.

Adopting this belief equips us not only to tackle everyday logistical challenges but also to pursue broader, more ambitious goals by continuously reminding us that every problem has a solution waiting to be discovered.

Unveiling the true nature of self-limiting beliefs as mere excuses

Let's pause and delve deeper into why we often find ourselves tethered to self-limiting beliefs. At their core, these beliefs may not just be innocuous mental blocks but rather, convenient veils for our reluctance to act. Whether it’s due to fear, a lack of desire, or simply the daunting nature of the task at hand, these beliefs frequently serve as justifications for our inaction.

In essence, our so-called limitations are often excuses disguised as immutable truths. When we say we "can't" achieve something, we're generally expressing an unwillingness, rather than an actual incapacity. The adage "where there's a will, there's a way" rings particularly true in this context. If we truly desired to overcome a challenge, we would find or forge a path around any obstacles, driven by our determination.

Reflect on a time when you were highly motivated to achieve something that seemed initially unattainable. Chances are, you didn’t resign yourself to defeat; instead, you sought innovative solutions and pursued them vigorously.

Marie Forleo's own experience offers a compelling illustration. Early in her career, she dreamt of attending a retreat in South America, but financial constraints stood in her way. Rather than capitulating to a self-limiting belief by saying "I can't afford it," Marie transformed her desire into actionable steps. She undertook additional jobs and negotiated a payment plan with the retreat organizers, thereby turning her aspiration into reality.

This distinction between "can't" and "won't" is pivotal. Declaring "I can’t" suggests a lack of power over the situation, whereas "I won’t" acknowledges a personal choice. Recognizing this difference empowers us to take ownership of our decisions. It's about admitting our agency and considering more proactive alternatives. This shift doesn't necessarily mean that we'll always change our course of action, but it does mean that we're making a conscious choice. By confronting and owning these choices, we open ourselves to potential growth and change, breaking free from the shackles of self-imposed limitations.

Debunking the common excuses of time, money, and knowledge

We often cite a lack of time, money, or know-how as reasons for not pursuing our ambitions. However, upon closer examination, these popular excuses don't quite stand up to scrutiny. Let's dissect each one to uncover the truth beneath the surface.

First, let's tackle the "I don't have enough time" excuse. It's easy to feel overwhelmed by our daily commitments, but consider this scenario: imagine a doctor tells you that you need to commit two hours each day to a particular activity to save your life. Chances are, you would make that time, no matter how busy your schedule seems. This might involve cutting down on passive activities like watching TV or scrolling through social media, or it might mean batch cooking meals to free up hours during the week. The point is — the time is there if the stakes are high enough.

This realization implies that time already exists in your day for pursuing your goals. Whether it's 30 minutes or an hour daily, that time adds up significantly over a year. Imagine dedicating an hour each day toward learning a new skill or starting a side business. Suddenly, you could have over 45 full workdays each year allocated to your personal growth or entrepreneurial projects.

Next, we consider the "I don't have enough money" excuse. It's important to first assess whether money is genuinely required for your goal. For instance, many learning resources are freely available online. If funding is needed, options range from side gigs to crowdfunding, saving strategies, or applying for grants and scholarships. The avenues to accumulate funds are plentiful and varied.

Lastly, the "I don't know how to do it or where to start" excuse is perhaps the easiest to counter in today's digital age. The internet offers a wealth of tutorials, courses, and articles on virtually any topic. Beyond the web, local workshops, books, and mentors provide additional avenues for acquiring knowledge and skills.

In essence, when these common excuses are dissected and challenged, they often crumble under their own weight, revealing that what sometimes holds us back is not a genuine lack of resources, but a reluctance to commit to the necessary effort or to step out of our comfort zones. By confronting these excuses head-on, we can move closer to achieving our goals and fulfilling our potential.

Reframe fear as a guide rather than a barrier

Having navigated past common excuses like lack of time, money, or expertise, we confront perhaps the most visceral of impediments: fear. Initiating any new venture, from launching a startup to climbing a mountain, induces a certain amount of fear. This instinctual reaction is part and parcel of stepping into unknown territories. Yet, the way we handle this fear can profoundly influence our progress.

The physical symptoms of fear—increased heart rate, sweaty palms, a knot in the stomach—are often perceived as stop signs. However, such reactions need not dictate a retreat. Instead, they can be reinterpreted as signals of readiness and excitement. Take Bruce Springsteen, for instance; before every performance, he experiences these same symptoms, but he translates them as evidence of his eagerness and preparation, fueling his legendary performances.

Moreover, the presence of fear might actually point to the significance of the endeavor. When we find ourselves repeatedly circling back to a daunting dream or goal, the associated fear isn't just an obstacle but a marker of deep personal investment and desire. If the goal weren’t meaningful, it wouldn’t incite such strong emotional responses. Hence, fear can act as a compass, directing us towards what truly matters in our lives—a tool not just for navigation but for affirmation of our passions.

The essential shift involves seeing fear not as an adversary to be vanquished, but as an intrinsic companion to any worthwhile pursuit. Treating fear as an enemy only grants it power to paralyze. However, recognizing that fear is a constant and choosing to act despite it can break the inertia it creates. Action diminishes its grip, allowing us to advance towards our aspirations.

In essence, by moving through fear with intentional steps, we harness it to fuel our journey rather than obstruct it. This approach doesn't eradicate fear but integrates it into the framework of our actions, turning a potential enemy into an unlikely ally.

Small steps are the key to breaking through indecision

Decision-making often feels daunting, especially when the stakes are high. It's all too easy to spiral into doubt and uncertainty, endlessly debating with ourselves: "Can I really do this? Should I even try?" Such indecisiveness, left unchecked, can morph into a state of paralysis where nothing gets done.

Marie Forleo herself grappled with such doubts for years over her desire to dance professionally. The dilemma is universal — the fear that we might waste time or make the wrong choice can freeze us in our tracks. But dwelling in indecision can consume just as much time — potentially a whole lifetime.

It's important to recognize that while prudent planning and research are valuable, they have their limits. Decisions about new ventures, be it a business idea or a personal goal, ultimately require action to test their viability.

The common belief is that we must first achieve complete clarity before we can take decisive action. However, the truth often works in reverse: action brings clarity. Marie's own experience corroborates this; it wasn't until she actually attended a dance class and immersed herself in the environment that she confirmed her passion for dancing.

Moreover, we often misconceive the need to make monumental decisions immediately. Yet, significant progress can be achieved through incremental steps. Instead of overhauling her life to focus solely on dance, Marie simply started with dance classes. This gradual approach can be applied universally. For example, if you're considering moving to a new country but are held back by uncertainty, start with a short visit to gauge the atmosphere and lifestyle. Or, if you're contemplating a major shift in a relationship, begin with taking some time apart to reflect.

The essence of overcoming indecision lies not in grand gestures, but in taking measured, manageable steps. These actions, though small, can provide valuable insights and progressively lead you towards making well-informed decisions. Hence, in the maze of indecisiveness, remember that the route to clarity and resolution doesn't necessarily require a leap — often, all it takes is the next small step forward.

Action is the antidote to unending preparation

One of the most deceptive hurdles to achieving our dreams is the belief that we must be fully "ready" before we begin. This notion, though seemingly reasonable, traps many in a cycle of perpetual preparation.

The idea of being "ready" implies a state of perfect readiness, equipped with all necessary skills, knowledge, confidence, and motivation. However, waiting to achieve such a state before taking action is a fallacy because readiness is cultivated through the process of doing.

Consider how we acquire any skill or build confidence: not by waiting on the sidelines but through practice and experience. For instance, waiting to feel motivated to exercise is less effective than just starting the exercise routine. Once you begin, motivation often follows — action breeds enthusiasm and energy.

The dynamic presented here reveals a fundamental truth: initiation precedes readiness. The conception that "doing creates the desire to do it" points to the paradoxical nature of taking action. Starting before you feel ready is not just advantageous; it's often necessary.

To embody this principle, don't wait for a distant future where conditions are perfect ("when I'm ready"). Instead, act now. Once you finish this session, take a proactive step towards a goal. Start small: perhaps register for a class, reach out to a potential mentor, or draft an outline for a project. Choose a goal that resonates deeply with you, break down your first action into a practical and immediate step, and execute it.

It's essential to embrace the concept that significant accomplishments are the accumulation of small, consistent actions. Just as Rome wasn’t built in a day, every journey starts with a single step, and continuous effort is key to crossing the finish line.

Put simply, the best way to get ready is to start now. Every moment spent waiting for the perfect readiness is a moment not spent moving toward your dreams. Don’t let the myth of readiness keep you at the starting gate – your first step today is a step closer to triumph. Your dreams await you; it's time to move towards them with purpose and action.

Unlocking potential with the power of mindset

The essence of the insights presented revolves around the transformative impact of our beliefs on our ability to navigate life's challenges and accomplish our goals. Central to this narrative is the empowering philosophy that "everything is figureoutable." This mindset is not just an optimistic touchstone but a practical approach that can systematically dismantle self-limiting beliefs and replace them with self-empowering ones.

The power of belief functions as a self-fulfilling prophecy in our lives. Believing that we lack the time, money, or knowledge to pursue our goals often serves as a convenient excuse for not taking action. These are not insurmountable barriers but merely challenges that can be overcome with the right mindset and approach.

Moreover, the obstacles of fear, indecisiveness, and the waiting for "the right time" to act can paralyze us. However, they too are conquerable. Fear can be reinterpreted as a signal of what truly matters to us, nudging us toward meaningful pursuits. Indecisiveness is best combated not by endless pondering but by taking action, which in itself can bring the clarity needed to make informed decisions. Lastly, the notion of waiting until we are completely ready before we embark on pursuing our dreams is debunked—readiness is achieved through action, not prior to it.

In summary, the journey toward achieving our aspirations is laden with perceived obstacles that are, at their core, opportunities for growth and self-discovery. Embracing the belief that "everything is figureoutable" encourages a proactive stance towards life's challenges, fostering a dynamic of continuous learning and achievement.

Everything is Figureoutable Quotes by Marie Forleo

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