I posted something to social media recently that resonated with a few followers so I thought it might be a great idea to discuss in further detail this week. I always find it interesting that often times when change is upon us, we become very cognizant of all the outside factors that could potentially hold us back from achieving success, but very rarely do we look inward at the things we can control and allow to get in the way. Essentially, all the nonsense we’ve accumulated over time. Similar to, if not inclusive of, those self- limiting beliefs we discussed several months back and the rest of the baggage we carry around on a day to day basis. If you have ever heard and can relate to the expression you are your own worst enemy, then you know just what I am talking about. While sure, there are things that exist in the world that may sound or seem like opposition, truthfully speaking, the only thing ever holding you back is you.
Reflecting on last week’s post and the exercise of writing your own story, when you affirm yourself and tell the truth success ultimately becomes limitless. I’m not saying that hang-up’s and iterations of life based on experience are completely destructive, but when they block us from moving forward it’s time to create awareness and build the necessary steps to get around them.
I once had a professor a few years back describe her work as a coach as "helping people get out of their own way". It was literally her “pitch” when people asked what she did for a living. Although I was familiar with the concept of holding myself back by way of procrastination, self- doubt, unnecessary stress, and believing the chatter of those around me, I never really thought of it as something I needed to overcome until she phrased it in this way.
Think about all of the times that you’ve stood in your own way. If you are anything like me, hearing this for the first time, your mind has probably gone blank. No one wants to admit they self- sabotage so you are most likely thinking, what do you mean the times I’ve stood in my own way? I am my biggest supporter. Everything that’s standing in my way is out of my control.
OK. Let’s take this as truth then for a second. Think about one of your biggest goals that you, for whatever reason, can’t seem to accomplish and write it down in your journal. Next, begin listing all the reasons that are holding you back from success. I.e. don’t have the funds/ need investors, time consuming, too much existing competition, someone already occupies the space, not enough experience, male/ female dominant industry, etc… At first glance all of these things sound like reasonable excuses that are driven by outside forces. I mean, it makes total sense. If you don’t have the money how can you build something? Your income is what it is, and you weren’t born into wealth. Same thing goes for education or experience.It's not your fault your company hasn't recognized your potential and hard work and keeps passing you over for that promotion. You are doing every thing you possibly can for them. For most people the buck stops here. The dream dies and we walk away defeated. This has unfortunately become our reality.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be this way. If we shift our way of thinking just a tiny bit about what stands in our way, we then begin to recognize that the control lies within us. Sure, you may not have the capital of thousands and thousands of dollars just lying around in the bank to launch that new business but what you do have is the mental capacity to come up with an inventive business plan that will serve as the gateway to potential individuals who do have the money. One of the most important things I think I’ve learned over the course of being an adult is that you never know who your people know. You might not think someone in your circle can help based on the skill set they personally possess or the industry they arise from, but don’t let that stop you from communicating what it is that you need. You know the phrase “a closed mouth doesn’t get fed”? Well it has never been truer than in this moment. More often than not, your friends aren’t going to be able to personally help push your agenda forward. But, who they know can be just as valuable if not more.
So don’t go selling yourself short. This is the how and why you push to think about things differently setting yourself up for the highest levels of success. You may not have the money, but start thinking about who does and how you can reach them. If you don’t have the education, skill set, or job title you need to move forward, what classes or courses can you enroll in to help you get where you need to be. If someone’s already occupying the space, reach out and get to know them. See where they might need help and/or feel like they could be falling short, then recognize what value you may have to add to the process and space.
This week I challenge you to dig deep with this exercise creating awareness around getting out of your own way and moving closer to accomplishing your goals. Take control of your life. We’re all capable and can get to the finish line it’s just a matter of clearing the path so you have a straight shot.
Always remember... When it’s hard, you work harder. No more excuses.