“Stop avoiding the problems you don’t want to deal with.” That’s the thing I have to keep telling myself. Saying it though is easier than doing it, and doing it really is only as hard as you want to make it. Some days this perception is easier than others. By writing this, and continuing to write EVERY DAY, I hope to disable some of my limiting beliefs.
I’ve known I’ve had limiting beliefs for a while now, realistically since my early 20’s. Knowing you have a potential problem and simply avoiding it is heart of it. It’s not really an issue of motivation or lack of it, but it comes from a deep place of fear. Fear, the one thing most people would probably think I don’t have, is my biggest limiting belief and challenge.
Who knows how those beliefs got there. Some I can point to and say, yep that’s exactly where that came from. I like to think of limiting beliefs like malware and bloatware on your computer. For the most part you parents do the best they can for you, but that doesn’t mean they don’t install you with some seriously jacked up software while you’re growing up. Some of it gets installed by teachers, friends, spouses, partners, even internet trolls or random encounters in the world.
A limiting belief is an idea or thought that you’ve made true for you. For example (not mine): “I can’t get close to anyone because I’ll get heartbroken” or “No one loves me” or I can’t do that because I don’t know how” etc. Obviously these beliefs are in essence, just simply made up. They were extracted from something that happened to a person that they now believe are true. These beliefs were created unconsciously, and that’s one of the reasons why they are so hard to dispel.
Since mine revolve around fear, I’ll try to explain what I’m up against currently and hopefully reach a small catharsis in the process. Yep, my position of 10 years will be concluding July 1. It’s scary, not because changes don’t need to be made (they do). It’s more the uncertainty of what happens next. I’m a very process oriented person and I like to know what’s coming so I can deal with it. With the loss of the position is almost a lost sense of my identity, which would be a limiting belief. I’m not defined by my position, I’m the one that defined it to begin with. That’s how you work your way back out of it.
The trick to defeating limiting beliefs is to A) Acknowledge them. If you don’t know what they are then you can’t fight them. B) Destroy the conclusion. The end is not the end, the map is not the territory. C) Try again. You’ve got to shatter the limiting belief and redefine how it is by going through. Not over, not around, but plowing straight through it. That’s can be the scary part.
I want to start my own business but I have absolutely no idea how to do that. That’s scary, but there’s knowledge out there. Then failing is scary, so is not having money, or having to change my lifestyle. Possibly moving somewhere new is a little unsettling as well as having to rebuild a whole network of people wherever I go. To a previous version of me, this would have been an exciting adventure, but because of those limiting beliefs it can seem scary. Which means I should do it, because I can’t keep things the same. It can become a sick cycle if you let it, but by breaking one belief at a time, it can make it manageable.