Why don’t more people pursue their dreams?
One word: beliefs.
As human beings, who we are and what we believe is nothing more than the make-up of the billions of unique individual experiences we go through as a person.
They come from everyone and everything you’ve ever interacted with…
Parents… Teachers… Coaches… Siblings… Friends… Colleagues…
Everyone. Everywhere. All the time.
These experiences can be both positive and negative, and have a significant impact on your life.
Unfortunately, not all of your beliefs serve you well.
Many of them can be limiting, holding you back from achieving your goals and living the life you desire.
They make you doubt your abilities, think negatively about yourself, and prevent you from taking action.
David Bayer, an entrepreneur and mindset expert, explains how many of our beliefs are shaped when we are children based on the meanings we give to individual experiences.
Because this happens when we’re so young, the neural pathways that are formed are then reinforced as we grow up.
This puts us into a psycho-cybernetic loop of continuing the same bad habits and thought processes day in and day out, regardless of how they’re actually affecting us.
Since we don’t realize we’re in this loop…
We get stuck in our ways by subconsciously limiting the forward mobility of our lives.
What a mind f*ck, right??
As Julia Roberts’ says in one of my favorite movies: Eat, Pray, Love:
“It’s unnerving when a total stranger sees you more clearly than you see yourself.”
Fortunately, it is possible to overcome your limiting beliefs.
And the first step to doing so?
As they say:
“The first step to solving a problem is realizing you have one.”
So you have to start by identifying them.
Take some time to reflect on what you believe about yourself and your abilities.
Write down any beliefs that come to mind, no matter how small or insignificant they may seem.
This includes both positive and negative beliefs.
Try to write down at least 5 of each (positive and negative).
Some of the most common limiting beliefs people have about themselves include:
- “I’m not good enough” – Many people feel that they are not good enough in some way, whether it’s in terms of their abilities, their appearance, or their personality.
- “I don’t deserve success” – Some people feel that they don’t deserve to be successful or happy, often due to feelings of guilt or shame.
- “I’m too old/young” – Age can be a limiting belief for many people, either feeling that they are too young and inexperienced or too old and past their prime.
- “I’m not smart enough” – Many people feel that they are not intelligent or capable enough to achieve their goals.
- “I’m too shy/timid” – Social anxiety and shyness can hold people back from pursuing their goals or connecting with others.
- “I don’t have enough time/money/resources” – Feeling like you don’t have enough resources can limit your ability to achieve your goals.
- “I’m too busy” – Busyness can become a limiting belief if it prevents you from making time for things that are important to you.
- “I’m too set in my ways” – Feeling like you’re too set in your ways or too old to change can limit your ability to learn and grow.
- “I’m not lucky” – Believing that you are not lucky or that success is determined by chance can limit your ability to take risks and pursue your goals.
- “I’m not worthy of love/affection” – Low self-esteem can lead people to believe that they are not worthy of love or affection, which can limit their ability to form healthy relationships.
Once you have identified your limiting beliefs, the next step is to challenge them by asking questions.
Ask yourself if they are really true.
- Are there any examples of people who have achieved what you want to achieve, despite facing similar challenges as you?
- Where do these beliefs come from?
- Why do you believe them?
- Are your beliefs based on facts or assumptions?
When you notice a limiting belief, ask yourself if it’s really true or if there’s evidence to support it.
Often, our limiting beliefs are based on assumptions rather than facts, so questioning them can help to shift your perspective.
Then reframe your thoughts by focusing on your strengths and what you can do, rather than focusing on your weaknesses or what you think you can’t do.
Take action by breaking down your goals into small, achievable, more manageable steps.
This can help to build confidence and demonstrate that you are capable of achieving your goals.
Learn more about making SMART goals by checking out my previous article: You Can’t improve What You Can’t See.
Practice self-compassion by being kind and understanding towards yourself, recognizing that everyone has strengths and weaknesses.
Practice self-care activities like meditation, exercise, or spending time with loved ones to boost your self-esteem.
Surround yourself with supportive people by seeking out people who are positive and encouraging, and who believe in your abilities. Having a supportive network can help you to stay motivated and overcome self-doubt.
If your limiting beliefs are impacting your daily life or causing significant distress, consider seeking help from a mental health professional. They can provide you with tools and strategies to manage your thoughts and emotions, and help you to overcome your limiting beliefs.
Challenging your beliefs can help you see things in a new light and open up endless possibilities.
In one of previous posts, Forcing Your Subconscious to Change Your Reality, I talked about the importance and power of mindset and emotional intelligence.
Entrepreneur, author, and motivational speaker Tony Robbins emphasizes how the power of mindset affects our beliefs and shapes our reality.
Your beliefs are not facts.
They are simply thoughts that you have internalized over time, based on the experiences you’ve had up until this point.
And you can change your thoughts by changing the experiences you focus on going forward.
By changing your thoughts, you can change your beliefs, which in turn can change your reality.
Check out this interview with Tony Robbins where explains how you can brainwash yourself for success while destroying negative thoughts and limiting beliefs.
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