Working with a number of clients recently, a trend has started to emerge, one which I can relate to personally. There have been many conversations surrounding self confidence, imposter syndrome and vulnerability within the context of personal performance development and leadership.
When speaking with people, we often hear things that are being said which can appear to be logical but are more often than not the symptoms and not the root cause. If you actively listen, you tend to pick up on subtle clues; body language, tone, linguistics, that can suggest that there are underlying causes which we need to explore.
If you can eradicate the cause, it removes the need to treat the symptom.
One of the common root causes associated with the discussions we are having are beliefs. Beliefs can either be limiting, or empowering. Both are extremely important to us as human beings, as the limiting belief that I cannot fly, helps to maintain my presence on this wonderful planet that we have.
Unfortunately, we often have learnt limiting beliefs throughout our lives that are just not true anymore. Research shows that the environment that we live in affects us more than we tend to appreciate. We learn from the people we surround ourselves with and the environment that we grow up in. Therefore we may believe things that others have told us, from their own experiences, which are not specifically true for us.
The great thing about beliefs is because they can be learnt, they inherently can be re-learnt.
Since leaving school at the age of 16, it took me 20 years to remove my own limiting beliefs about my ability to perform academically. I didn’t struggle in school and performed relatively well in exams, but left with a feeling that I didn’t really fit well with the academic system. This belief stayed with me throughout my life until I started to question the validity of my beliefs.
Some of the questions I asked myself:
Is there evidence of other people like me who have left school with similar qualifications who have gone on to achieve academic success?
Is there evidence of people successfully achieving degrees at later stages in their lives?
Is there evidence of people conducting distance learning at degree level?
Do I know anyone that I can relate to who has done what I want to do?
Through objectively questioning my own limiting beliefs, you very quickly realise that they are not very logical. Once you can appreciate this, you can start to develop a strategy that can be implemented in order to achieve your goals.
Do you have any limiting beliefs? What are you doing to understand them, remove them, and build the future that you desire?
How can I help?