5 top tips to banish self-limiting beliefs and improve your self-esteem.Mar 21, 2022
What you think about isn’t nearly as important as the way you think about what you think about
Why is it when we’re facing a challenge or tricky situation in life, rather than mentally ready ourselves and believe we’ve got what it takes to handle it, more often than not, we fear failure, and convince ourselves we’re not capable or good enough to succeed? Those nasty little gremlins start their whisperings, and the self-limiting beliefs are activated. We put up the self-imposed barriers which stand in the way of potentially fabulous and marvellous things which we can achieve.
The thing is, most of the time, we know the stuff we need to know but once the gremlins move in and set up camp, we forget everything. The analogy I liken it to is that all the knowledge we have, or the resources we possess to solve a problem, are behind a row of doors in our brain. When we feel calm and in control, the doors swing open and we have access to all that we know. However, when we’re full of negative thoughts, our brain cannot be open and resourceful, and all those doors slam firmly shut.
The doors is an analogy that I have shared with my daughter who is currently in the midst of her GCSEs. She felt she could have done better in her Mock exams that took place last November and so we've spent quite a bit of time working on her self-belief. She has worked so hard on her revision and I explained that all the knowledge is behind those doors in her subconscious- so it's important that during the exams, she remains calm and she can then access all that information. Even if there's a question she doesn't feel too confident that she learnt the content for, her ability to formulate an answer is also behind those doors. By thinking calmly, feeling confident and in control, the doors then fling wide open and everything is accessible.
So far so good with her February Mock results...
The quality of my actions cannot exceed the quality of my thinking
Self-limiting beliefs can be hugely debilitating. They can cripple us in terms of not being able to move forward. We believe the voice in our head telling us we’re not good enough, that we can’t do it, why would we even think we could achieve such a thing etc etc. If we believe that voice, the we perpetuate that negative self-belief.
Sometimes, we manage to conquer the self-limiting beliefs and go for it but sometimes, we allow those self-limiting beliefs to manifest themselves in another guise - the dreaded Imposter Syndrome. We get good at what we’re doing, too good by all accounts because we then feel things are going too well and surely, we can’t be that good at this. We have thoughts of inadequacy- we’re here because luck has had a hand in it and someone sooner or later is going to suss us out, we’ll get a tap on the shoulder and be told our promotion was a mistake, that the job we were employed to do isn’t working out for us, that our performance isn’t quite what was hoped for.
This is when you don't feel worthy of your success. You don't feel able to take the credit - you think it's all a fluke and you're unable to realise you're where you're at due to your skills, qualifications, experience and personality. Very often high achievers find themselves feeling an Imposter, including the fabulous Michelle Obama!
Strategies to reframe your mindset
So, how do you banish those self-limiting beliefs? How do you build your self-esteem so that you believe in your capabilities and know that you’re worthy of achievement? It's about looking at your self-image– the combination of your self-competence and your self-worth. You need to think about the way you think about yourself and what you can do to realise you’ve achieved where you're at through hard work, tenacity and skills. You need to realise you deserve this success!
So, here are my top tips to boost your self-belief and improve self-esteem:
- It starts with the nature of your thinking so think about why you have these self-limiting beliefs – where does this stem from? Past comments by parents, teachers, peers, managers? This is not your whole story. This is not the whole truth. Even if past mistakes have been made, learn, grow and move on.
- Monitor your self-talk. Is it serving you well? If not, turn it around and ensure the way you describe yourself to you and to others, is positive in nature – that rather than hindering your progress, it’s helping you to move forward.
- Banish the gremlins! Every time that voice in your head is rubbishing you– tell it to do one! Turn down the volume on the negative thoughts and amplify the sound of the positive ones. Remember- you run your brain, it doesn’t run you. So, replace the unhelpful thought with one that empowers you.
- Eyeball yourself in the mirror and tell yourself – like you mean it – that you are awesome! Every. Single. Day.
- Journal and write down how you’re feeling and if it’s been a challenging day, write down how you can change it up for the next day. Re-read and see how far you’ve come. The only person you should compare yourself to is you from a year ago, five years ago, ten years ago. Acknowledge the differences you have already made since then and know that you can and will continue to do so.
If you're working towards a goal and have played your part by putting the work in and being conscious of your mindset, you have done all you can in the success equation.
We're all worthy of success, whatever that might mean to us, we just need to allow it for ourselves. Then great things can be achieved and celebrated!
Here's to you and all you achieve!
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Do you find it challenging to run your brain? Is your head full of self-limiting beliefs?
Would you like to feel more in control of the nature of your thoughts, to take your life in the direction you want to take it?
The Mindset Coaching Membership can help you understand the tools and strategies needed. With Masterclass Teachings + Coaching + Accountability, we will help you to create the future you want. Find out more here.
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