A Symptom of Something Deeper: Releasing Your Limiting Beliefs

Here you are in the final month of learning to Release what no longer serves you, and Re-Lease your life to serve you better. At the front end of this year, as I plotted the journey, I foreshadowed rounding out the year by going BIG and reaching for the gold: tackling the Release of Limiting Beliefs. Now that I’m a year older and “wiser”, I recognize that we’ve been looking at examples of Limiting Beliefs throughout the year!

Each month, we diligently explored why a belief doesn’t serve, suggesting solutions in order to grab a new lease on life with less anxiety and more fulfillment. And since I’m DRIVEN’s best client, to be true to my core values I’ve been walking the talk of these releases and re-leases. It’s led to many great successes in 2019, as well as struggles. But alas, life is a work in progress. When I got stuck, I used various tools, methods, frameworks and techniques with the intention of overcoming the roadblocks (and get Eve to sit in the corner). Let’s look at a few of these techniques as they relate to our Limiting Beliefs.

Look, Listen and Call Them Out!

Limiting Beliefs have a symbiotic relationship with Resistance, serving to snuff out an idea before it’s ever explored. By engaging the language of Limiting Beliefs, you can consider what could be as opposed to what couldn’t possibly be. Premonitions like “I’m not smart enough”, ”I don’t have enough time”, “I don’t deserve XYZ”, “People will think I’m selfish”, “They’ll laugh at me”, ”People aren’t to be trusted”, “Women have to work twice as hard to move half as far” are the indicators that Limiting Beliefs have been hiding plainly in sight! Once you’ve seen them, don’t just move on or shut them down or suck it up and plow through. Instead, allow these beliefs to rise to the surface.

Do The Work

Now that you’ve called out a Limiting Belief, choose to get curious by investigating beyond the words. I admire Byron Katie’s method known as The Work:

Question 1: Is it true?

Question 2: Can you know for certain that it is absolutely true? Or are there perhaps other ways of looking at it or other alternatives that might be possible?

Question 3: How do you feel or respond when you consider the belief to be true? How do you treat both the event and yourself?

Question 4: Who would you be without these limiting beliefs? Put yourself back in the situation, but this time without the belief. How would your experience change? How would you feel this time?

What’s the Belief Under the Belief?

I learned long ago that anger is a symptom of something deeper going on (helplessness, lack of respect, not being seen). Limiting Beliefs are also a symptom of something deeper— fear of failure, fear of people not liking me, fear of looking foolish. Often we’re stuck because we’re focused on the worst-case scenario. If you can dig down to the underlying belief, you can consider along a Scenario Spectrum. And once you stop letting your negativity bias be the boss of you, you can embrace the details of the worst-case scenario. From there, you can imagine a best-case scenario. Ask yourself “What if the opposite were true?” “If I had no roadblocks or limits to my resources, how would it look?” “What would happen if I could not fail?”

Then consider some outcomes in the middle. Come up with as many as possible, decide which ones teeter outside of your comfort zone, and STRETCH. This is where a coach can become a great asset. If you want to determine whether keeping a coach in your corner is the right fit for you, sign up with me for a Complimentary Coaching Consult.

Do an Energy Check.

Our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual energy tanks are being tapped at different pressures, and at different times. Have you noticed that when you’re well-rested, on an exercise and meditation streak, eating well, getting along with your spouse, and excelling at work, you feel invincible? Then, when one or more of these variables change, don’t you begin to question yourself? In moments like that, remember that we’re all human chemistry sets, and our emotions are our elements. States of frustration, impatience, defensiveness and irritation are enough to demotivate you into questioning your own abilities. Doing a brain or body scan are helpful here.

Shouldering our Limiting Beliefs is cyclical. For instance, there were many moments of the year when I was able to laugh at myself, feel my confidence surge through my body, be totally present and self-compassionate, and truly leverage the growth mindset. And then at other times, ehh….not as much. I find that my Limiting Beliefs take my energy hostage when I’m not taking good care of myself, feeling down, lacking sleep, not eating well, not exercising or meditating. This is when life looks a bit darker and the world of possibilities shrinks. So, besides asking yourself Byron Katie’s world-opening questions, take good care of yourself. Remember to manage the elements of fear right in the moment you catch yourself slipping.

In my follow-up article you’ll find various resources for battling your Limiting Beliefs. Then, get ready for some “Best of DRIVEN” action during the final two weeks of 2019. Plus, if you stick around past the New Year’s ball drop, you can learn my 2020 Word of the Year!