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What are limiting beliefs and how can I get rid of them?

Updated: Apr 9

Workplace mental health service

Ah where to start with this one.

OK so this will affect pretty much everyone at some point of their lives and a limiting belief can stop potential dead.

But, let's not get ahead of ourselves. What is A limiting belief? It is a belief or mindset that restricts or stops you in some way.They are often false or based on a half truth and can apply to yourself or others, the way you view the world and how you interpret ideas. Examples could include: I don't have enough experience to apply for that job or I don't deserve to be wealthy or I don't have time to spend on myself.

As I said, at some point everyone has limiting beliefs, the trick is to learn how to identify them, challenge them and change them.

These limiting beliefs can be caused by any number of things but they will all have one thing in common. They are your brains way of keeping you safe and protecting you from disappointment and pain in the future.

These beliefs often come from past experiences which we have added values and concepts to which are unlikely to be accurate but have been our impression at the time. So for example. Your parents may have been arguing about money because they had to pay for a school trip. You mind hears that you are costing them money which is causing them to argue and your mind comes up with the belief that you are not worth money being spent on you because it causes trouble. - Your limiting belief is that you are not worthy. Now the thing is, you don't know what the truth is. Your parents may have liked to argue, the money may have been a trigger for other issues, they may love you so much that they desperately wanted you to go on this trip. But, it no longer matters to you , what the truth is, because your limiting belief is already entrenched in your mind and your identity.

Maybe our ideas have been formed by repetition by those we want to impress such as family or friends. An example of this could be a teacher or friend constantly telling you that you are clumsy.

Schools and the community greatly effect the conditioning that we receive and these beliefs become so intrinsic to who we consider ourselves to be that we are not even aware that we are thinking them most of the time. We are just triggered into a response by them.

It's these triggers that contribute to fear, a need for approval and imposter syndrome.

How do you know if you have a limiting belief?

Look at the areas in life where things aren't working out for you and see what you notice about your behaviour or your mindset around yourself abut this thing or your views on other people who have what you want.

So how do you deal with a limiting beliefs?

We need to be mindful. When aware of what we are thinking, we can examine how our thoughts are impacting on our lives and then challenge and change what isn't helping us.

Writing down how we are feeling can help us to look for appeals and identify underlying themes. This can also be called journaling and the more we do of it, the easier it becomes to see recurring themes and triggers.

Challenge your beliefs for accuracy.Who can you hear saying it? Do you feel it's true? Part of what we believe may have some truth to it but we need to be accurate in the language we use when describing ourselves so that we can reframe our negative beliefs into empowering ones or simply let the ones that aren't helping us go..

Assess areas in your life where you feel overwhelmed or challenged. Example of this are that you never see lucky in love or are always passes over for promotion or never have any luck.

For each of these observations, go deeper. If you never have any money, start to examine how you feel about money or the people that have it. What we're your parents beliefs about it. Are you taking on what they believed rather than forming your own ideas? The deeper you delve into your thinking, the more apparent your beliefs will become.

Use positive affirmations or mantras to help us to overwrite negative beliefs. Due to the neuroplasticity of the brain, anything that has been learned can be unlearned or overwritten. We just need to create a stronger neural pathway than the one we currently believe. An affirmation is a phrase that sums up the behaviour that we want to see in our lives . It must be positive and phrased in the present tense. It's thought that it takes on average ,six weeks of consistency to change a behaviour.,

Keep your environment ordered and organised. Clutter can lead to confusion and overwhelm and we can struggle to think clearly and stay positive in chaotic places. Keeping our space ordered can help us to keep our heads in order too.

Get a coach or counsellor. If you feel that you need additional help in identifying the root cause of your limiting beliefs or can't see a way to overcome them, it may be time to seek professional help. Seeing a life and mindset coach, can help you to identify the thoughts and behaviours that aren't working for you and provide you with clear steps to work through your limiting beliefs, enabling you to be free of their power and move on in your life.

Cost is often another limiting belief for self improvement but I think the question to be asked is not how much will it cost me to seek help but how much will it cost me in the long term if you don't?

Read self improvement books, websites, blogs or listen to podcast. Sometimes we know the answer deep inside of us but we need an external source to unlock it for us in a way that we can understand.

Get support. Maybe ask a partner or a friend to help you. Each time they hear you say something negative around the behaviour that you are trying to change the say challenge. This way they force you to bring your subconscious thoughts into the present to challenge and change them. Pick one behaviour that you want to change at a time or it may become overwhelming or cause more conflict in your brain and / or relationships.

Be kind to yourself. We are all on a journey of discovery. No-one wins at life and none of us get out alive but hopefully while we are mindful of our thoughts and behaviours and each day are open to new experiences to open our minds then we can live full and joyous lives that contribute to the greater good.

If any of this sounds familiar to you and you would like to start working on identifying and overcoming your limiting beliefs then please get in touch for a free no obligation chat to see if we would work well together to help you achieve your goals.

Take care.



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