What you think affects how you feel. Thoughts and feelings shape your life because they influence your behavior and determine what you see as possible choices. The process you use for identifying or recognizing opportunities becomes a closed loop – defining and self-reinforcing. Eventually, you lose sight of the fact that you ever had options. Your perceived choices become the only reality that your limited imagination can conjure up.
How often do you hear yourself say, “That’s life. It’s just the way it is. This is reality.” These phrases communicate inwardly and to the world that you’re letting LIES (labels, illusions, excuses and stories) narrow your choices. You’re giving in to the limits placed around you by past experiences rather than opening your mind to the truth of unlimited possibilities that lie before you. You’ve become your own Border Patrol, your biggest source of disempowerment.
Maybe it’s fear that’s shutting down your ability to see the true reality of your situation. Maybe your self-limiting behavior is driven by cultural expectations of you as a woman, an African American, a Latino or a gay person or a man. Maybe it’s the well-meaning words of someone in your past who urged you to watch yourself in certain circles, or laid down the law about what was expected of you and members of your group. We all experienced pivot points – those forks in the road that build us up or break us down. Digging deep to uncover those crucial turning points is an excellent first step in releasing their power over you.
There’s no better time of the year to reflect, assess and make new choices as you prepare for the fresh start of a new year. Ask yourself, “In what ways am I the obstacle to my success and satisfaction?” Be courageous and conduct an honest assessment. Notice when you’re making excuses, thoughtlessly repeating conventional, yet false ideas, or allowing old habits to hold you back.
My book “LIES That Limit: Uncover The Truth Of Who You Really Are,” was written to guide people through reflection and self-assessment. It offers real-life stories, revealing exercises and journal starters that bring awareness to the ways you’re standing in your own way.
Give yourself, your loved ones and mentees a gift this holiday season – the gift of transformational self-awareness that comes from reading “LIES That Limit.” It will change the way you view what’s possible for you and release the grip of fear, allowing you to soar into the life you were meant to have.