Did you know that there are people in the world who are exhilarated by a challenge? People who see an opportunity to overcome and get excited? I used to be the kind of person who was afraid of a challenge, who didn’t want to try new things for fear of failure or disliking them.
I used to believe that if I didn’t learn something by my 20s there was probably no hope, and worse yet, that I was just doomed to be held back by this weakness. I didn’t understand investing, so I would be doomed to paying someone to manage my money for the rest of my life. I am a bad test taker, so I was doomed to a life limited by my lack of advanced degree beyond my bachelor’s.
I realized that my GREATEST limitation was a fear of looking towards the future and admitting what I wanted, what I wanted my life to look like. I was afraid that if I declared something as a desire, and didn’t achieve it, then I was a failure.
As a child, I was led to believe the goal was 100 percent, anything less was a failure. Some people had different standards for themselves, but this was mine. And so, I feared that if my life was not 100 percent of what I wanted, then I would fail.
But over time, I began to realize the impact that my negativity was having on me and started to change the story I was telling myself. I realized that these limitations were choices I was making. I didn’t understand investing, because I never bothered to try to learn. I might not be the greatest test taker, but it was my thoughts, my mindset that would limit me from achieving my goals, as it is quite rare (outside of certain fields) that the lack of an advanced degree could truly prevent you from getting a job. If I could achieve 75 percent of what I wanted in my life, that would be 100 times better than never going after my goals for fear of failure.
My clients are constantly faced with this realization and I share these stories with them.
I challenge them to over the next week, recognize the stories you tell yourself. Do you wake up Monday morning and expect the trains to be a disaster? Do you expect terrible traffic? Do you wonder why you are never offered a promotion, without even seeking one?
Then think about where it started. Why are you having that thought, what can you point to as the cause? And then correct it. Create a positive version of the story, and every time you catch yourself falling into the habit, correct it.
Rinse and repeat.
What is a limiting belief you recently overcame?