"We learn our belief systems as very little children, and then we move through life creating experiences to match our beliefs…”
-Louise L. Haywell
Limiting beliefs are what you hold to be true about who you are that limit the development of your physical, emotional, financial, intellectual and spiritual potential. The ongoing relationship between limiting beliefs and low self-esteem is epic. Low self-esteem is like a parasite that feeds off the energy you supply to your limiting beliefs. One thrives because of the other. How does this happen? It happens over time. For instance, telling a child they ask too many questions might lead the child to believe asking questions is a bad thing; when a child is yelled at all the time the child might believe they are not worthy of kindness. You get the picture. Limiting beliefs can provide an unrealistic sense of safety...that keeps you behind the picket fence even though what you'd love to do is swim in the ocean. Let me introduce you to what I call the four shades of limiting beliefs.
Education When forming our perceptions of the world, we cannot depend solely on life experiences. There is only so much we can get into to draw our conclusions. How we view the world in general comes from listening to our parents and teachers. Listening and also what we read is also important because it helps us to understand how to behave in the world. Although education tells you what is right and wrong, good and bad and helps you survive and grow it also can limit the things you experience because you may never try things. In turn you might miss out on useful experiences and knowledge.
Jacked-up logic When making decisions we often make them in error, based on what someone else’s outcome was. We can be quick to write something off that we believe will be a failure for us simply because it was a failure for someone else. Let’s not forgot about the people who make decisions based on a hunch. These people will gather a little bit of data and then generalize the results as fact. Decisions like these are usually based on our subconscious hopes and fears. That is jacked-up! When you don’t challenge the cause and effect as a reasonable ingredient your decision is flawed.
Excuses One reason we use jacked-up logic and form limiting beliefs is to make excuses for our perceived failures. When we do something and it does not work it’s never our fault. We have to explain away our failure by forming and using beliefs which justify our actions and leave us blameless. But in doing so, we do not learn and continue to paint a portrait of ourselves outlined by limiting beliefs that determine what we think and do in the future.
Fear Limiting beliefs are often fear-driven. Locking the belief in place is the fear that if you go against the beliefs, certain needs will be harmed. Truthfully we all to some degree have a strong social component factored into the decisions we make. The smallest chance of criticism, ridicule or rejection by others is more than enough to inhibit us in a powerful way. Limiting beliefs remind us constantly that we might be harmed in some way by others. That fear serves as the catalyst that results in avoidance and/or appeasement.
Which shade of limiting beliefs are you using to create your self-portrait?
When our beliefs become those which constrain us in some way they are deemed limiting. Limiting beliefs can seriously hold us back in life and most of the time such beliefs are invisible to us. They control some of our thoughts and behaviors behind the scenes, just enough to reduce our results in some area of life. It doesn't have to be this way. How can you change or rid yourself of these limiting beliefs? Stay tuned! Next week I will show you how to identify your limiting beliefs. After all, you can not change what you don't acknowledge.
Beverly Jones-Durr is a published Author, Certified Life and Business Strategist and Educational Facilitator. She is also known as the “Clarity Ninja and Mindset Shifter” because she teaches clients, consultants and other service professionals how to eliminate the fog, remove the clutter and shift their focus to their purposeful and intentional path so that they can get stuff done. She creates programs that help you to develop your authentic self, build a positive and powerful mindset and create real time action plans that are both attainable and measureable. Don’t forget to check out, "Four Road Blocks Keeping You from Getting What You want", a four part video series that puts you on course to mastering all areas of your life as a gift. You can also follow Beverly 0n Twitter, FaceBook and YouTube