Breaking Through Your
Self Limiting Beliefs
by Kevin Hogan
Limitations: The Ceiling on Your Potential
Think of your limitations as a ceiling that hovers at a certain
height over your head. The ceiling height is different for each
of us, but all of our ceilings have one thing in common: they
determine our potential. They determine "how high we can jump".
If our ceiling is built up high, we have great potential and
can achieve much in our lives. If our ceiling is built down
close to our heads, we will only achieve the bare minimum for
comfortable survival (or even less).
Now, as we consider self-limiting beliefs, you have to ask
"Who crafted your ceiling?"
Why, you are of course! You set the height of your ceiling
based upon the things others said to you, and the conclusions
you drew about your capabilities.
Just like your other beliefs, the height of your ceiling is
very flexible and is constantly on the move. When you first set
a goal, you might be fired up and motivated to make it happen.
At that point, your ceiling is soaring far above your head. As
you begin to stumble on obstacles and lose your initial
motivation, your ceiling begins to drop steadily.
When you give up because it seems too hard, your ceiling
practically rests against the top of your head.
Is motivation the only way to raise your ceiling?
No, not at all!
Another great technique involves honestly assessing your
true capabilities, and beginning to work on expanding them. If
you're pretty good at something, work on becoming great at it.
If you think you're terrible at something, yet driven, keep doing it until
you get better....or better yet, ask someone else to be involved
in your project and do this part.
The fact is that working on strengths is rewarded in achievement.
Don't get me wrong. You need to be competent in a number of areas
to succeed, but you don't need to be THE BEST in a lot of areas
This is an ongoing process of honest assessment, small but
consistent effort, and evaluation of progress. It's not rocket
science, but it does require an attitude of determination and
This process of expansion begins to take on a life of its own
the longer you work at it. Before long you'll be scoffing
at limiting thoughts and attempting things you never would
have dared consider before.
Here are some additional ideas for raising your ceiling of
a) Question your past "failures". Did you REALLY fail, or did
you just give up too soon? Explore the lessons you learned
from each "failure" and see if you can use the insights to form
a better plan.
b) Be willing to pick up an old dream or hobby and start working
on it again. Did someone convince you that your dream was
stupid and not worth the effort? Did you really agree with
them, or did you simply choose to believe without question?
Re-examine your dreams and aspirations. If any of them still stir
your soul, follow where they might lead.
c) Set new goals and begin to expand your concept of what you're
really capable of. Consistently strive to raise your ceiling by
thinking and dreaming BIGGER. When you reach the place where
you think you need to stop, take one more step. Just one; and
that one step will often change everything, either internally or
People have this incredible habit of lousy timing. They quit right
before the next door was THE door.
d) Challenge the limitations that others have tried to place on
you. Write out your reasons for knowing they were wrong and
enter into a dialogue with them about it (even if the other
person isn't there, you can do this process on your own). Try
phrases like these:
"You have no idea what I'm capable of because _________."
"I know you're wrong about this because __________."
You won't be convincing others of anything, only yourself -
which is the only person who counts in this scenario!
Again, this is a process, so don't lose heart if you don't see
much progress right away. It's like building a snowman. The
ball is small when you start rolling it. But then momentum
kicks in and that ball gets big.
Keep questioning your limiting beliefs and keep expanding
your perception of your potential. Every bit of effort
you can put toward this activity will pay off later.
Keep limiting beliefs in check by...
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