Limiting beliefs may hold you back more than you realize, especially when it comes to pursuing your dreams. Think about it—what’s your wildest professional dream? Maybe it’s starting your own business. Perhaps it’s making partner at your firm or changing the world through a ground-breaking nonprofit. Why haven’t you gone after your dream?
If your answer is because it’s simply unattainable, that’s a sign that you’re not quite setting your standards high enough, and setting those low standards is usually traced back to limiting beliefs. You may think that an “average” life is enough or all you deserve. If you think you don’t have enough time, resources, or skills to pursue your dream, then you’re setting the bar low.
But what could you accomplish if you opened your eyes to new beliefs? Your life could drastically change if you set higher standards for yourself. While changing your beliefs from limiting to empowering requires conscious daily mindset adjustments, the effort results in a more fulfilling and successful life. Here’s how to begin changing your beliefs and, as a result, set higher standards for your life.
What are your beliefs?
We’re not talking about your moral beliefs or religious beliefs. We’re talking about how you view yourself and your life.
It’s important to note here that beliefs are very different from knowledge. Knowledge is something you know from direct experience (i.e., “the sky is blue because I’m looking out my window and it’s currently blue”). A belief, on the other hand, is based on opinion or indirect experience (“I can’t get that promotion because I’m not as experienced as the other applicants”). But even though beliefs are not factual knowledge, that doesn’t make them feel any less real. Beliefs are often so repetitive within your mind that they become your reality and, thus, influence your behavior.
Unfortunately, if your beliefs are limiting, they hold you back from achieving your goals and setting high standards for your life. The key to changing this is to turn those limiting beliefs into empowering beliefs. Both are still beliefs and may not be 100% true, but the differences are stark. Limiting beliefs hold you back and impair your confidence while empowering beliefs give you confidence and courage, and encourage you to take risks.
What are the beliefs that you hold to as you move through life? Are they limiting beliefs or empowering beliefs? As you think about that high-standard career or life dream, your first reaction should be a belief that will empower you, not one that will limit you.
Eradicate your limiting beliefs
Sweeping aside those limiting beliefs and adopting empowering ones isn’t easy, but it can be done with enough patience and persistence.
First, identify your limiting beliefs. These are usually the reasons you’re giving yourself for not accomplishing something or not pursuing your highest goals. Let’s say you haven’t started that new business yet because “there’s not enough time in the day.” That’s your limiting belief.
It’s also sometimes helpful to identify where your limiting beliefs are coming from and, if you’re having particular trouble eradicating them, removing the source from your life. For example, if your weekly gripe sessions with your friends are fueling those limiting beliefs, try to steer the conversation into a more positive light.
Adopt empowering beliefs
Once you’ve identified your limiting belief, you must replace it with an empowering belief. In the case of the limiting belief mentioned earlier about time, you could replace it with the belief that you do have enough time if you’re willing to reprioritize.
However, replacing those limiting beliefs with empowering beliefs isn’t enough. You also must know what you’re working for and keep your new standards in your sights. This means recognizing the consequences of both sets of beliefs. If you continue thinking that there’s no time for the new business, the consequences will be never starting it and continuing to live life without fulfilling your true potential. If you replace that belief with the empowering belief that you can reprioritize and find time for your new business, you’ll quickly discover that you will find enough time to not only start the business, but also time for other things in your life that you’ve been pushing off, as you remove your most laborious or tedious tasks from your life through reprioritizing and delegating.
Along these lines, it can also be helpful to identify support for your new empowering beliefs. Often, this takes a little more work, but it can be incredibly helpful. Maybe you delegate a few tasks at work to give you more time to build your business. Once you see the process in action and your newfound hours throughout the day, there’s your proof and support for your empowering beliefs.
To sum it up, here are 5 easy steps to embracing new, empowering beliefs:
- Identify your limiting beliefs
- Identify the source of your limiting beliefs and eradicate it
- Replace your limiting beliefs with empowering beliefs
- Support your empowering beliefs with evidence that those beliefs are true
- Lastly, recognize the consequences that arise from both belief sets
Your beliefs dictate your life
Don’t allow unfounded beliefs to dictate your life, goals and standards. Start setting higher standards for your life based on the new, empowering beliefs you need to succeed. The first step to a better life is improving your beliefs, according to Gandhi:
“Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.”
The bottom line
While changing your beliefs from limiting to empowering requires conscious daily mindset adjustments, the effort results in a more fulfilling and successful life. You can expel energy by constantly fixing problems and turning your wheels, or you can make the mindset adjustment to consciously embrace empowering beliefs. This change is not easy, and many people spend their entire lives trapped by their limiting beliefs. If you still need a little help getting rid of those limiting beliefs, Arootah’s coaching services can help you! With coaching services focused on career development and life fulfillment, our expert coaches help you identify the skills and beliefs you need to work towards your highest personal goals.
What are some empowering beliefs you’ve used to achieve success? Let us know in the comments below!