Do Something Impossible Or Go Home

impossible_2Do Something Impossible or Go Home

If you’re already doing something impossible, that’s great – I’m ecstatic you’re here. this isn’t for you. If you’re not, this might make you angry – you need to hear it anyways. Fair warning.

I only want people around me who can do the impossible. – Elizabeth Arden

This place is a place for action.

Not for wishing. Not for talking. Acting. Doing. Finishing.

If you want talk, go to 99% of the rest of the world. There’s a lot of noise. Everyone wants to talk, talk, talk, talk, and talk some more but very people actually follow through. There are enough places in the world that that happens. This is different. If you don’t want to do something impossible, you can go home. We don’t need any more talkers here.

Do or do not, there is no try. – A Wise Green Jedi

The only difference between people who do impossible things and people who don’t, are the people who do impossible things – do stuff. That’s it. They do stuff. That’s the secret sauce. They don’t waste their time trying. They just do it. The three words that guarantee failure are “I will try.” So if you want to do something, stop trying and just do it already. As soon as you approach something as “trying”, you’ve already given yourself permission to fail because “you tried”. So if you’re going to do something, just do it.

You have no excuse not to start now.



Don’t even bother reading the rest of this post. If you’re reading this as a procrastination tool, stop it and go do something.

What This Blog Isn’t

I want to clear some things up.

This blog isn’t Oprah’s book club, it’s not a campfire and we’re not sitting around singing kum bah yah. If you want self help, here’s the only post you ever need. This is about doing things. Hard things. Impossible things. If you want to do something, here’s how to do it.


That’s all it takes. Every significant step forward in history started with someone who decided to do something and then went and did it.


*this is where you try and explain how your scenario is different*


*this is the part where I tell you I don’t care*


It’s not that I don’t care about you – I care too much. I just couldn’t give a crap about your excuses.

The truth is you’re better than you’re letting yourself be right now. Whatever excuse you’re holding onto is crap and deep down you know it. The angrier that makes you, the truer it is.

You’ve been lied to. You’re not SPECIAL. Your circumstances aren’t that different. You’re exactly like everybody else on this planet.

If you want to do something impossible, stop complaining that it’s “hard” (you should have expected that) and explaining why you “don’t feel like it.” With all the energy you spend coming up with excuses you could be out there doing something remarkable instead.

You’re not different. You’re not special. You’re a normal freaking human being. And that’s awesome – because normal human beings are the ones who change history. It’s time to start acting like it.

I Won’t Be Writing About Rainbows

Sunshine, rainbows and unicorns.

That’s not what I’m interested in. That’s not what I write about. That’s not what I’m about.  

If you want to make a change and don’t know how to do everything at once, that’s fine, start on something. But if you’re sitting around, snorting inspirational cocaine telling yourself you’ll change everything starting tomorrow, you can leave.

There are some really big things I want to do. There are some really hard things I want to do. I need some really really amazing people to help.

But that might not be you.

Not because you can’t, but because you don’t want to. You don’t really want to have to do the hard work. You don’t really want to step outside your comfort zone and risk failure. You say you do, but your actions say otherwise.


Doing the impossible and telling a great story isn’t always easy. It’s not always nice and pretty. It’s not gonna be fun all the time. It’s not sunshine, rainbows and unicorns. But it’s totally worth it…if you decide that it is.

The Integral Importance of Action

Goals don’t drive your accomplishments, action drives your accomplishments. – Joshua Millburn


Your decision to act is the single most important decision you can make. Instead of allowing yourself to be a victim of circumstances, you turn into a conquerer of whatever situation you find yourself in. You can have all the goals in the world but if you never do anything with them, so what?

You have more goals than anyone? That’s neat. Are you actually doing any of them?

That’s why most bucket lists are junk. People take one time to write out all their dreams and think about them. And those dreams feel good, like really good, but they never make the changes they need to make to actually DO THEM and the bucket list sits on their computer or wall collecting dust while the person who wrote it basks in false sense that they’ve accomplished something. The impossible list is not a bucket list. It’s a constant reminder to live a better story in the present by doing something impossible rather than living complacently.

Why Do Something Impossible?

It’s not the accomplishment of your goals that’s important; it’s what the accomplishment makes of you. – Jim Rohn

I’m not here to beat my chest and yell about triathlons. It’s not about running long distances and one-upping everyone else. I honestly don’t really care what you impossible things do. If you want to run a triathlon, sign up for one and start training already. If you want to climb Mount Everest, research the crap out of it, fly to Nepal and climb the stupid thing. If you want to knit, just start knitting. I don’t care what you do, but do something because when you do something you thought was impossible, you fundamentally change.

In order for you to actually do something impossible, you have to become a very different person than who you are right now attempting the safe, non-dangerous things you’ve trained yourself to attempt your whole life. As you shift yourself into a realm you’re uncomfortable in, you force yourself into the unknown, begin experiencing conflict and you start telling a better story with your life.

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. – Teddy Roosevelt

It’s not the things that you do that matter – it’s that you do them, and the journey that happens when you decide to do them. But to do that you have to pick something and actually do it.

Once you do something you thought was impossible, you realize that limits are imaginary. You don’t have to play everyone else’s game anymore. You can make up your own rules.

The entire story of your life changes when you do something impossible. Instead of being restrained by your limits, you look to expand them. Instead of shying away from conflict, you lean into it, because you know that’s the only way to really engage the story. Instead of looking for excuses, you search out opportunities. Instead of shying away from failure, you look to it as a learning opportunity. That’s why it’s so important to do something impossible.


Do Something Impossible or Go Home

A lot of you won’t like this. A lot of you will leave. A lot of you probably won’t like me anymore. That’s fine. 

This place is a place for action. We’ll be revamping the league soon to focus on action over talking and I’ll be revamping the content, my list and my actions to reflect that as well. It’s starts with me. Come along if you’re up for it.

I appreciate every single person that takes time to read something I’ve written, and I’m going to continue to be more and more specific with blueprints to help you get started doing something, but I’m done enabling inaction.

Do something Impossible, tell a great story and  change your life (Here are a few ways how). Otherwise, go home.

If you want to get started, download the impossible manifesto. It’s free (pdf is available here). Then go do something.

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  1. says

    Oh man. You know how to hit a girl while she’s down… in a good way. :)

    I’m not feeling very sunshine and rainbows right now, because I have so much to do and I’m overwhelming myself thinking about the end result of all of them.

    So I just started. On all of them.

    I didn’t finish anything yet, but I’m DOING things. I feel a hell of a lot better that things are getting done at least part-way, rather than just sitting in my head collecting dust like most people’s impossible things.

    “Everything seems impossible until it’s done,” right?

  2. says

    You’re a hard man to love… but you’re right. And people hate that…

    So gotta run… impossible stuff piling up…

    Oh, and I spread your “love” around my little social networks. Hope somebody listens, and acts.


  3. says


    You know, I was just this morning wondering how anyone ever got anything done. I’m an author, so I’m tapped into lots of author forums and such, but during the day, I write. No email, no chats, no angry birds. It’s how I’ve managed to put actual words into books.

    At the end of the day, though, when I check my email, I get notifications saying that many of my writer friends chatted all day. For hours. And like I said, ‘How do they actually write anything?’ I mean, I have my days too, but if I want anything to change, I have to DO SOMETHING. Also, if you don’t mind, I’m stealing ‘inspirational cocaine’.

    Thanks for this: I’ll be revisiting it often!

  4. says

    Wow. This makes me wonder what’s going on… I haven’t been in the League much lately, and I’ve really been missing it. I’ve been doing lots of impossible stuff –including rubbing the feet of a friend who has been on suicide watch because she is in such terrible physical pain.

    For me, the Joel Runyon Impossible League formula is “Do the Impossible and then COME home.” The League is the harbor, not the sea.

  5. says

    Baaaam. That’s why I luv your blog man. Always in your face and never apologizing for it. You and Ashley Ambirge are the dynamite between my ass cheeks.

  6. says

    Awesome post! I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately.

    The times in my life when I haven’t accomplished something weren’t because I encountered some massive obstacle that I couldn’t overcome. It was simply because I didn’t take action.

    Another quote you could add would be this one I found from Dale Carnegie:
    “Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.”

    • Dulie says

      I love that Dale Carnegie quote! He was a brilliant man, he didn’t let little things get in his way.

      Thank you for the reminder.

  7. Kurt Swann says


    Excellent summary/clarification of what your blog is all about. One thing that I’m sure about . . . you said “A lot of you probably won’t like me anymore.” A Lot? . . . maybe only one or two at most:)

    Also, I read that post about how the impossible list is not a bucket list. I think that’s really fits well with what you’re writing here. I’d recommend anybody to read that along with this post . . .

    Look forward to see how things are revamped etc.


  8. Speedstreak says

    To succeed is simpe. You just need to work hard. Now to work hard, this takes tremendous effort.

    I completely agree with everything you say. Nothing more to say on it.

  9. Debbie says

    Awesome post Joel. As I’ve said before, my impossibles may seem silly to some…but they’re biggies for me.

    My most recent…I’ve signed up for an art class with an artist that I admire. I’ve often talked about doing this and sort of knowing that I never would. Well, BOOM! I signed up and paid for it the other night!

    The cool thing is, I have to go away for a few days to take the class. Going away alone has been something that I’ve always wanted to do. BOOM! I’m doing it!

    I love your straight forwardness! Thanks for the inspiration, encouragement and kick in the *ss!


  10. Dulie says


    Another gem of a post.

    This helped secure a couple more impossible acts on my immediate action impossible list. I started signing up my Volleyball team for the recreational co ed league at a local watering hole. I also asked one of the people who gave the biggest push into trying soccer if she would be on the team (we’re a little male heavy on the team), and she mulled it over at first, saying it had been forever since she played…then I related the story of how I started. This swayed her decision :-) I used to tell myself I couldn’t talk to girls like her, unless she wasn’t “available”.

    Yes, small, almost insignificant steps…but used to seem impossible for this guy.

    It is actually nice to take responsibility for oneself and make the impossible a possibility, confidence is building and other people are seeing it. Breaking personal records becomes an addiction.

    I have shared this post with the Spartan Race Facebook community, it has met a decent response :-)

  11. says

    Great push to action. I have been guilty of planning too much, wanting to gather more information, and waiting for the planets to align or something before I get in gear. Then, looking back to last year, what do you have? A little more knowledge, maybe a better developed plan, but nothing else.

    We need action. It doesn’t always have to be gigantic, earth shattering action, but it does have to move you in the right direction. If you don’t exercise, even 5 minutes a day is a huge step in the right direction but thinking about it is useless; you must act. Thanks for the great post Joel. An inspiration as always.

  12. says

    This reminds me of the scene from Miracle where the coach is called one of his players a candy-ass. Tables get turned, tempers flair, and as the coach walks out he asks his assistance coach, “Do you think that will get them going?” Sometimes a good kick in the butt is what people need. Nice post.


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