Ever wanted to make a change in your life but you feel that you don’t have time or the skills necessary to succeed? Ever told yourself that you don’t deserve success or that you’ll never amount to anything? Sound familiar?
These are very real feelings and they have probably been reinforced by the people you associate with and the situations that you find yourself in. In fact, a lot of limiting beliefs do not start with you, you inherit them from others. Authority figures in our lives, usually people that should be nurturing us; like parents and teachers, burden us with limiting beliefs when we are young and we carry them around with us. We then seek relationships that support these beliefs, our friends and partners reinforce these beliefs and we come to accept them and adopt a life accordingly.
This is because subconsciously we seek out people and situations that reinforce our beliefs. We have a mechanism in place called the conscious critical faculty whose sole purpose it is to assimilate things that are close to our belief system and reject things that seem opposed to it. And so if we maintain beliefs that limit us from change and we actively seek evidence to support these beliefs, even when the evidence is purely circumstantial.
When placing limiting beliefs on yourself you create limitations on your abilities. To be frank they are mainly based on assumptions we have about our reality that simply are not true. With no real evidence to back up our assumptions, limiting beliefs are simply false beliefs we hold about ourselves.
We cannot create change like this and if we want our actions to have the most positive effect, our beliefs need to be as grounded in reality as possible. If we continue deceiving ourselves we will drift further from our goals.
Here are some examples of limiting beliefs that you may recognise:
- That you don’t have the time or the ability to change your life
- That particular opinions you hold about yourself are fact, so there is no point in trying to change them.
- That if you keep on doing the same thing over and over at some point the result will be different (which is Einstein’s definition of madness)
- That you will never be successful is futile so there is no point trying
The good news is that limiting beliefs are very easy to break. A good coach can help you to overcome limiting beliefs and develop a belief system that is based in reality, allowing you to see options that will help your personal development. A coach can help lift the veil of your beliefs and allow you to set those life changing goals that you always wanted to achieve.
Wizard of Oz fans will know that once you peek behind the curtain you will see that there was really nothing holding you back but a lot of smoke and mirrors, as well as the limitations placed on you by others.