How to Do Things that Seem Impossible

By Sean Ogle •  Updated: 11/30/20 •  3 min read

What would it look like if…

…I ran a marathon even though I’ve never done it before?

I moved to a tropical island for two months?

…I built a business that has the potential to help thousands of people?

…I golfed all of the top 100 golf courses in the world.

….or visited all the best bars in the world.

There’s one thing that sets successful lifestyle entrepreneurs apart between most other people:

Their ability to imagine something most people would say is impossible.

How to Things that Seem Impossible

What would it look like if…”

This is quite possibly the biggest mental reframe I’ve ever made in my life.

Before I was running an online business and traveling all the time, I used to spend a lot of time daydreaming.

I’d pretend that I was running down a beach beach in Thailand, as opposed to the bike path in downtown Portland.

I would imagine that I was playing a round of golf at Pebble Beach as opposed to the local muni course.

I’d imagine that I was working on a business that really inspired me, rather than just making someone else rich.

The problem with all of those things was that for a long time I never actually thought that my daydreams could be reality.

It wasn’t until I got a random email from Dan Andrews telling me to apply for the Tropical MBA that I realized maybe there was something to this after all.

I put myself in a good position to make things happen, but at the time, I didn’t have any clue what I was preparing myself for. Even today, I’m not entirely sure what’s going to be next.

However in that first 6 months of living in Thailand I made a profound switch.  Instead of thinking “that’d be cool” I started saying “what would it look like if?”

Why This Is So Important

You may be thinking, “yeah, yeah, big deal.”

But it is a big deal.

If you don’t have the ability to imagine something incredible that doesn’t currently exist, or the ability to imagine a life that you’re not yet living, you’re never going to achieve those things that truly excite you.

Most people thought people like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were crazy. How about Alexander Graham Bell? The Wright Brothers?

For most of the things that we use on a daily basis and take for granted, there was someone behind it who people deemed crazy.

In my case I’m not inventing something that’s going to change the face of humanity as we know it. However, I have created things that have made a huge difference in the lives of many people – not the least of which is my own.

Once you believe anything is possible, you begin looking for ways to achieve it.  Once you achieve a small goal it gets easier and easier to achieve a larger goal. Before you know it, you’re not only doing all the things you thought you had to wait until retirement for, but you’re getting paid to do it in the process.

What have you always wanted to do? What have you believed would be impossible and therefore haven’t even thought about pursuing?

Do me a favor. Today, ask yourself one question:

“What would it look like if?”

Go down the rabbit hole. See how far it takes you. You may be pretty happy where you end up.

Sean Ogle

Sean Ogle is the Founder of Location Rebel where he has spent the last 12+ years teaching people how to build online businesses that give them the freedom to do more of the things they like to do in life. When he's not in the coffee shops of Portland, or the beaches of Bali, he's probably sneaking into some other high-class establishment where he most certainly doesn't belong.
Learn How to Make Your First $1,000 Freelance Writing (in 30 Days or Less)

Join over 40,000 people who have taken our 6 part freelance writing course. Sign up below and let’s do this together.

By entering your email address you agree to receive emails from Location Rebel. We'll respect your privacy and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Keep Reading

12 comments on "How to Do Things that Seem Impossible"

  1. I love this – the idea of asking “what if” is so much more powerful than most people realize, because it totally changes your perspective. Instead of automatically assuming that something is impossible or out of reach, asking what it would look like forces you to seek out actual information (rather than assumptions).

    So many seemingly-difficult things in life are much easier to do than most people realize, but they won’t ever make this leap if they aren’t first able to envision themselves in the scenarios they desire 🙂

    1. Sean says:

      Couldn’t agree more. I’ve found just by asking, something most people never do, you’d be amazed at just how much is possible.

    2. Scott Nelson says:

      I too have adopted this mindset. My current mantra is “wouldn’t it be cool if”. In my (current) experience, this comes with one caveat; like many goals and anything worth having, they usually involve sacrifice. Currently my two ‘wouldn’t it be cool ifs’ are; wouldn’t it be cool if I ran a marathon sub 4hrs and wouldn’t it be cool if I could make a living off my websites. Now yes, both of these would be cool(!), but the physical and mental sacrifice is exhausting. So I guess my main point is, choose your goals wisely!

  2. Monique says:

    You’re amazing, and you inspire me MORE every single time you write a post. I’m going down that rabbit hole, and I’ll let you know what I find!

  3. Katie Jane says:

    Yes to this. When you start asking “what if” it will literally change your life. There’s an entire conference – What If Conference – dedicated to this idea, which I attended earlier this year. It completely altered my worldview. It’s such a simple concept… “what if…” but it opens up an entire universe.

  4. Siegfried says:

    Hi Sean!
    Thanks for posts like this, they really help when I get tired of online struggle 😉
    Best Regards!

  5. I too got by with daydreaming for a long time and removing myself from reality. You never think it is possible because you just make excuses. This year alone I have knocked tow things off my bucket list (traveled internationally, and drove across the country). Things I only daydreamed about before.

    The sense of actual accomplishment is far better then the artificial enjoyment you get from daydreaming.

    Yesterday went out and hit a bucket of balls at the driving range for the first time in years (going over again today) and this morning started my day off with fishing. That’s two personal enjoyments in two days, most people don’t get to do two things in a month for themselves. Great post! BTW hope you had a great time at the Masters.

  6. This mindset is essential in the fight against stagnation and mediocrity.

  7. I love this post. I don’t think I would be where I am now if I didn’t ask those questions. I think that people are too scared to ask themselves “what if”, sometimes because they don’t believe in themselves enough, or sadly, some are scared of success.

  8. Chas says:

    Thank you for that. Feed your head.

  9. FERNANDO says:

    The start of this post gives the dreamer that it’s possible to achieve the lifestyle they dream. Great to hear about Bali, my best place I loved to the 30 days I spent. The Kuta beach and the 10 days there are some the most epic times of life.

    Great to see your sharing your Asian exotic travels Sean. Loved your YouTube video where you show how to stay for free in a luxury Vila in Bali.

    Just asked the question and myself and my girlfriend while she’s designing an eBook which I wrote for the FERNANOD BIZ readers.

    Always great to have a good read Location 180 in the weekend.

  10. Jamie says:

    Great post, Sean, and it couldn’t come a better time for me. I used to use positive visualisation when I competed in Muay Thai fights. I’ve no doubt that visualising the win helped pushed me through tough training and even tougher fights.

    When I first started out on my online journey, I use to daydream about what it would be like to do it full time. I was making good progress and motivated to work on my business every day. Reading this post has made me realise that I’ve stopped fantasising about living my digital entrepreneur dream, and that’s reflected in my progress. I need to get back to losing myself in my dreams, it might just be the little technique that helps me breakthrough to the next level.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *