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Limitations In Thinking. What Beliefs Are Pulling You Back? - Reviews, Self-development
Limitations In Thinking. What Beliefs Are Pulling You Back? - Reviews, Self-development

Video: Limitations In Thinking. What Beliefs Are Pulling You Back? - Reviews, Self-development

Video: Limitations In Thinking. What Beliefs Are Pulling You Back? - Reviews, Self-development
Video: "Describe A Time When You Solved A Difficult Problem" INTERVIEW QUESTION 2023, March
  • Your best year
  • By Michael Hyatt
  • Moscow: Bombora, 2018

Publishing chapters from the book

Limitations in thinking. What beliefs are pulling you back?


On the way to each goal, we face obstacles. When people encounter obstacles, they doubt that they can overcome them. But the other half is sure that everything can be done if they put in more effort or look at the problem from the other side. What peculiarities of thinking bind us hand and foot?

Researchers divide people into two categories. They call the first category essential theorists. They think that their abilities are unchanged, like a stone. You've probably heard people like that say, "I'm just not very good at x, y and z." They have limiting thinking at work.

The second group is called step-by-step theorists by researchers. When faced with difficulties, they simply start looking for a new approach to the problem. They know that there is always a workaround or solution if they keep working on a problem. These are the ones who have the abundance mindset at work.

Of these two approaches, one leads to failure, fear, and resentment. And the other - to success, joy and satisfaction. What's the big difference?

People with a limiting mindset rely on a system of limiting beliefs about the world, others, and themselves, while people with an abundance mindset appeal to principles of liberating truth

Limiting thinking Thinking abundance
1. Labels and are afraid of everything 1. Grateful and confident
2. Think they'll never get enough 2. Know that they can always achieve even more
3. Don't share their knowledge, contacts and emotions 3. Happy to share with others their knowledge, contacts and feelings
4. Think they are what they are 4. Recognize that they can learn, grow and develop
5. Initially suspicious and cold 5. Initially open to the world
6. Avoid competition for fear of being weaker 6. Have a competitive spirit, knowing it will make them even stronger
7. Are pessimistic about the future, thinking that only difficulties await them ahead 7. Look to the future with optimism, knowing that all the best is yet to come
8. See problems as obstacles 8. Perceive problems as opportunities
9. Think small and avoid taking risks. 9. Think big and take risks

So what kind of mindset do you have?

The ability to achieve goals begins with understanding where the line lies between limiting beliefs and liberating truth.

Three kinds of limiting beliefs

It's pretty easy to spot limiting beliefs if you look closely at yourself. Let's start with your views on the world. “I cannot start a business right now, the market is in a terrible state,” someone might say. Or: "I don't trust managers, they try to deceive us all the time." Or: "These politicians complicate the economy so much that I cannot develop."

These beliefs may sit deeply somewhere. They are not always related to reality, they are far from the truth, even when they seem quite objective

We must learn to ask questions and sometimes get away from them. Otherwise, our beliefs will rob us of our freedom and motivation to take action.

We also have limiting beliefs about others. “It makes no sense to ask! - you might say. "He's too busy to meet me." Or: “She's just a saleswoman. How can she know? " Or: "Someone like her will never go on a date with someone like me." This is not necessarily true. They are simply beliefs that affect us.

Beware: limiting beliefs distort our view of the world, of others, and of ourselves

The third type of limiting belief is familiar to all of us. I'm talking about beliefs about myself. We can say, “I'm a weakling. I never get things done. " Or: “I can't do it. I will never be in good shape. " Or: "I will never have money." Or: "I am completely devoid of creativity." These beliefs are most often false or at least half true. But they block any progress that you seem to be aiming for.

How do you know when you are trapped in your limiting beliefs?

In Kill a Habit - Create a Habit, Jeremy Dean (British psychologist, writer, founder and author of the popular PsyBlog site - Ed.) Mentions three non-viable ways of thinking:

Black and white thinking

That is, we admit defeat if we have not done everything perfectly. But reality is usually a scale, not a switch.

• Personalization

When we blame ourselves for any trouble, even if it happens by accident

coincidence of circumstances.


When we already imagine the worst, although there are no objective reasons for this /

A fourth item can also be added to this list:


When we remember our bad experience and believe that it will haunt us in all areas. Where do these beliefs come from?


Michael Hyatt, author of Your Best Year, blogger with 2,000,000 subscribers

The origins of limiting beliefs

As I said before, sometimes our limiting beliefs arise from our mistakes and failures. The failure that haunts us forces us to prepare for the worst. We begin to store what we have too carefully and avoid risks.

But if we look closely, we will notice another influence. For example, there are social media platforms that reflect negative biases.

Go to Facebook and you will see as if everyone has a completely magical life. Happy kids, beautiful friends, sunny vacations and a busy job. And it immediately begins to seem to us (this happens unconsciously) that we are not keeping up with the set bar

We're not as smart, creative, educated, successful, lucky, athletic, or creative as the people on Instagram.

Scientist Donna Freitas has conducted extensive research on social media and students from more than 12 colleges. “Facebook is the news portal of envy, like a never-ending news bulletin about who’s cool and who’s not, who succeeded and who became a loser,” she writes in her book The Happiness Effect. "Until you have bulletproof self-confidence, immunity to envy, or the unique ability to remind yourself what people want to achieve by posting photos on social networks (namely to show off and brag), it's hard not to pay attention to it."

I'm an ardent supporter of social media, but it's no surprise that spending time on Facebook turns into a feeling of dissatisfaction with life.

And then there are toxic relationships, from friends and colleagues to family members. Most often, we acquire these beliefs during childhood. They become part of what University of Virginia psychology professor Timothy Wilson has called the basic concept of our lives. Many of these concepts are good and useful. But not all, and they are the hardest to let go and fix.

Our beliefs become the lenses through which we look at the world. And it's important to understand that the shape of these lenses is influenced by our attitudes. And there is no point in letting limiting beliefs drag you back

How can you change the beliefs that limit you?

Limiting beliefs are misunderstandings in the present that badly affect our future. Installations hold us in place, but we can free ourselves by updating them

We are all different and each has a different set of limiting beliefs. But I noted that almost everyone has two. First, we have no way of influencing circumstances. And second: we do not have the resources for this. I would like to consider each of them in turn.

When we feel like we have no strength

Each of us has more strength than we can imagine.

Albert Bandura, professor of psychology at Stanford University, claims that this power has four properties that help us achieve our goals.

The first is intention. We can imagine a better world than the one we live in. And we can cooperate with other people and in spite of the circumstances to achieve this.

The second is thoughtfulness. By visualizing the future, we can change our behavior and give direction to our actions.

The third is action. We have the ability to follow our own plans, stay motivated, and react to external circumstances to correct our path.

And finally, reflection. We not only act, we know that we are acting. This means that we draw conclusions, make adjustments and revise plans.

No matter the circumstances, we have the strength to change our future. Some people don't believe it. They think that if they cannot control everything, then they cannot control anything. But these are just limiting beliefs. It is our choice to be an active actor in our life.

Resource question

Resources will never (I repeat - never!) Will not become the defining link in achieving a dream. In fact, if you have everything to achieve your goal, then most likely your goals are too small.

Resources are necessary, but they are not a prerequisite for success. Lack of resources is often even an advantage. Dealing with constraints can lead to an incredible number of surprises. For example, they force us to seize the opportunity and do everything to realize it.

Lack of resources stimulates creativity. Restrictions help increase stress tolerance and self-confidence. The more difficulties we overcome, the easier it is to accept our future

If your goal is big, then you may need more different resources than you thought. But for this you need to start. Lack of funds will never be a good excuse to put your dream in a distant box. Try to use this situation as a hint on how to move towards your goal further.

Reconsider your beliefs

You shouldn't limit yourself to your beliefs. You can exchange them for liberating truth. I would like to offer you a six-step strategy on how to do this. Please note that you will need a notebook for this exercise.

First, determine what beliefs you are limiting yourself to. I mentioned several options for thinking. For example, black and white is the most limiting belief. The same can be said for personalization, dramatization, and generalization. They can come from negative experiences, the media, or your environment. It doesn't matter what they are about or how much they correspond to the truth, it is important to understand that this is a one-sided view of reality - and in most cases, wrong.

Second, write down those beliefs. Perhaps they will look like this:

  • I don't have enough experience.
  • I can't write.
  • I always give up.
  • I'm not creative.
  • I always fail.
  • I don't know how to handle money.
  • I have discipline problems.
  • I don't know how to handle technology.

Let's be honest: your problems can be about anything. We all have weak points.

Try to write down your beliefs - word for word. This way you can better understand and appreciate them.

Third: reconsider your beliefs. Start by assessing whether this belief is empowering. Try to be objective. Does it help you achieve your goals or slow down the process? Be honest.

It is important to note that some are dependent on their limiting beliefs. Maybe they give them a sense of confidence, drama, or significance because they let them think the world is up against them. But honesty is the key to freedom.

Fourth: challenge your beliefs. If your beliefs are false, you can easily reject them. Sometimes they can simply be replaced, as I suggested earlier.

Putting other frames is a little more difficult. There is a grain of truth in many of your beliefs. That's why they sound so convincing. But there is only a grain of truth in them. Even if your limiting beliefs are true (or half true), you don't have to put up with them. You can rewrite your history at any time.

Researchers at Duke and Harvard studied startups that make at least a million dollars and found that the average age of their founders is 39. “Those in their fifties are twice as many as those under 25,” says Vivek Wadhwa. research leader. “In the next project, we studied the lives of 549 successful businessmen in 12 growing areas,” he added. "The average age of men was 40, but a significant proportion were over fifty." So age has its advantages.

The same applies to youth. At the beginning of my career, I thought I was too young to be successful, and I heard people talk about it often. This is a convenient excuse. But some of the most energetic and efficient business owners are in their 20s and 30s.

If you think the whole problem is age, you need to change your boundaries

Fifth: improve your beliefs. But now it becomes interesting. I'm not talking about ordinary self-hypnosis. I propose to refocus your thoughts on the liberating truth. If, for example, you think, "I am too old to consider this vacancy," then you might say, "I have more experience than other candidates."

Conversely, if you are thinking, "I am too young for this job," you can say, "I have more energy and enthusiasm than other candidates." Imagine a job interview. Old "truths" pull you back, and new ones provide an opportunity for real progress. Be sure to write down your refined beliefs.

Sixth, and last, refocus yourself on new beliefs. Start living with new principles. You may not immediately accept them. This is normal. Try it. You may feel uneasy at first, as if you are wearing an oversized coat. But if you tell yourself the truth, it will "sit" on you like a glove and you will feel comfortable in it.

What are your limiting beliefs?

So let me ask you: what are your limiting beliefs? They can concern the world, you or those around you. What stories or expectations prevent you from living the way you want, the way you are destined to live?

If you still haven't done so, I urge you to write out these restrictions. Divide the page in two. In one, write your old beliefs, and in the other, your new ones.

Now begin to be guided by new beliefs. You have everything you need. Refining your beliefs is the first step to living the best year of your life

Reverse thinking: how to learn to use it

An important part on the path to a brighter future is to complete all past affairs. “Our reasoning takes us not only into the future,” say psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Dale T. Miller, “but also into the past, from an event to what it recalls and makes us think about

We need to learn to harness the power of reverse thinking. What for? We cannot turn the page until we realize what we have just experienced. A friend of mine used to say: "The case is not completed until the memories of it appear."

If we try to brush it off, we will be punished for frivolity. How? Sometimes we become hostages of silly stories that we tell ourselves. Sometimes we harbor grudges to justify our actions, or we feel underestimated because we have been neglected in some way. If we do not put an end to it, we will transfer all unfinished business to the future, and this will constantly distract us from our main goal.

Our reasoning can go both ways. Thinking backwards gives us opportunities to learn and grow, which helps us progress in the future

And now, before going further, I want to focus on this. The process I will now describe will help you cope with failure and frustration. But it won't help if you've been through serious injury. Many of us have faced real shocks, even disasters. You may be divorced. Or lost a loved one. Or have experienced an accident, illness, violence, or ruin. But until you learn how to deal with these traumatic events, they will affect you and even shape your future in the most unhealthy way.

What I describe in detail below may help. If for this you need external resources, such as psychologists, turn to them. But for the rest, recording their disappointments and analyzing them may be enough.


"Debriefing" - many businessmen use this technique, so why not use us too?

Debriefing is a "living, changing process that links the past to the present." I will break this process down into four key points. In each, we mark a few questions, and I advise you to arm yourself with a notebook to write down your answers. This notebook is a great tool for learning to harness the power of reverse thinking.

According to research by University of California professors Sonya Lubomirsky, Lori Sousa, and Renee Dickerhoof, participants who worked on their negative experiences, orally or in writing, reported that they were happier with their lives and improved mental and physical health compared to those who just thought about their problems.

Ready to get started?

Step 1. Determine what you wanted to achieve

This could be, say, a list of goals that you put together last year. Or something less specific. Hopes, dreams, or unspoken expectations.

First, ask yourself how your year went. What were your plans, dreams, goals, if you set them for yourself? Don't limit yourself to one or two industries. Remember, life is made up of several interconnected areas. It is important to understand in which specific areas you want to grow at the moment.

You may be looking at each area separately, but don't be surprised if you suddenly feel uncomfortable. Of course, everything is different for everyone. Don't be surprised if you don't feel anything at all. It's important to just be aware of your emotions as you work through these four steps.

Step 2. Understand what really happened

Some of your goals, perhaps many, remain unfinished. So ask yourself: What disappointments have you experienced in the past year?

Since these memories can be painful, it is tempting to ignore them. But you don't want them to hang in the air or forget about them as if they don't matter.

To begin with, it will be enough to write down all your disappointments in order to work on them later

Here's another question for you: how do you feel when you realize that you should have known something, but did not know?

Admit to yourself in which areas you are waiting for approval, and you will feel a surge of energy. Don't stop there. What are the things you have completed that you are most proud of?

Working through the past is necessary not only in order to cope with disappointment, but also in order to draw conclusions and enjoy your victories

It's important to see not only what went wrong, but also what you did, and understand how your beliefs and behavior led you to success. For some reason, we always miss this moment or do not attach importance to it. But it is the key to our motivation and how we cope with difficulties. This, in turn, gives us confidence in the future.

Perhaps you ran 10 kilometers or even a half marathon last year. Or celebrated an anniversary at work or in marriage. Maybe they got a diploma or paid off a loan. Established your own business or broke your own sales record. It doesn't matter what you've done, it's important to understand what you've accomplished in the past year. I bet you did more than you think.

To complete this step, it will be helpful to fully understand some of the topics. Do you have questions that come up with an enviable frequency? Words, phrases or whole sentences.

It may be important for you to understand how to start saving. For someone else, it's important to deal with negative attitudes about their body. Or quit your job and start your own business. Or end a toxic relationship. There are as many examples as there are people on the planet.

Stage 3. Learn from your mistakes

What's the most important lesson life has taught you in the past year? Until we learn from our own experience, we cannot grow.

You may have heard a quote from the Spanish philosopher George Santayan: "Those who do not remember the mistakes of the past are doomed to repeat them over and over again." If you are having trouble identifying the key lessons of the past year, the only way to identify them is to ask yourself what you lacked to be successful.

Perhaps you had a plan: you were going to take your business to the next level. Or they wanted to save more money, spend more time with their spouse and children, take a sabbatical, or read more books. Writing down the missing "ingredients" is an effective way to understand what went wrong and what to fix in the future.

To learn these lessons, you need to turn them into short, precise statements. This wisdom will help you in the future

Reimagine your experience so that you can remember it and use the tools you have acquired in the future.

Step 4. Adjust your behavior

If something in your behavior or beliefs has led to a discrepancy between the desired and the actual, you need to change something. This chasm will get bigger if you don't take any action. Awareness is not enough here. And it's not enough to admit your mistakes. If you don't change your beliefs and behavior, your situation may be worse than at the beginning.

If I had not corrected my behavior after my dismissal, then everything would have been in vain. I would find myself in a similar situation again. But instead, I went ahead and built a career out of the trials I faced, which ultimately yielded good results.

As I mentioned earlier, companies often use debriefing to improve performance. But it doesn't always grow, does it? According to research in the Harvard Business Review magazine, the reason is that they don't follow through. They do not apply the knowledge gained in practice, but collect it on shelves or servers. Let this not happen to you.

Thinking backwards can help you become aware of your past and build a rewarding future.

Four stages of debriefing will help you put an end to the past. But it will also help us recognize that our biggest disappointments can lead to our biggest opportunities

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