What Are Limiting Beliefs?
You may have never given much thought to limiting beliefs, but I guarantee you’ve experienced them. Limiting beliefs show up everywhere in our lives and can affect many different parts of who we are. Limiting beliefs hold us back from what we want to do and who we want to be. This is why I advocate for the concept of “unlimiting your beliefs.”
What Are Limiting Beliefs?
The first step in unlimiting your beliefs is actually understanding WHAT a limiting belief is in your life. A limiting belief is a false belief that we acquire as a result of making an incorrect conclusion about something. This limiting belief is then internalized and then impacts the options we see and our decision-making process. The way limiting beliefs sound in our head is, “Well, I can’t possibly do that,” or, “I don’t have enough money, time, ability, support (insert your own limiting belief here) to achieve that.” The
most common limiting belief is seen around New Year’s Resolutions, but the
truth is, they plague us every day of the year.
What’s The Big Deal?
My guess is that while I was just explaining what limiting beliefs are, you were thinking through a few personal examples of when you had a skewed perspective on life that ultimately changed your belief in your own abilities. We all experience this, so don’t get too down on yourself! The problem occurs when we don’t address these limiting beliefs, and instead, let them drive how we operate in life. When you live through the filter of these skewed beliefs, you believe that they’re absolutely true
What Can Be Done?
I’ve already said that we all experience limiting beliefs and they can affect any part of our lives, and I know you have your own personal limiting belief nagging at you in the back of your mind as you’re reading this. It can feel pretty depressing to think that we often operate out of a state of limiting beliefs. But, I’m here to tell you that you CAN unlimit your beliefs. You CAN change the way you think and view the world, and it WILL ultimately change your life. You will have an amazing impact on your world when you change the way you think and unlimit your beliefs.
Here are a few things to start doing today
- Name it. Look for things you think to yourself or say out loud that involve you not being able to do something. Perhaps even list out all the things you think you can’t do. Maybe it’s public speaking, running a mile, or being a positive person.By writing it down, you shine a light on the limiting belief. And, the sum total of them is how much you are limiting yourself.
- Question it. Once you’ve identified the limits you believe about yourself, ask yourself a few questions. Who told you that can’t do this thing? What is evidence do you have that you can’t do it? Is it 100% true, or what you extrapolated from watching someone else?
- Change your view. Changing your belief is a hard thing to do, and sometimes this requires outside perspective. This is where a coach, counselor, or even friend can help you gain new perspective.
- Be encouraged. I experienced limiting beliefs for 28 years about myself. Once I learned how to transform them into unlimiting beliefs, I accomplished the biggest goal in my life, completing the IRONMAN World Championships. That led to unlimiting many other beliefs, and in doing so, led to greater levels of success that continue to build and grow today. This is a process that is easily repeated when you learn how to do it and apply it. For more information on how to unlimit your beliefs, pick up my book about it.
Limiting beliefs can profoundly affect how we experience the world. My hope is that I, my coaching clients, and friends can recognize limiting beliefs for what they are and have the tools needed to change them, thereby transforming the lives all of us lead.
When you can change your beliefs, you can change your world!