Many of the pitfalls we’ve talked about so far are wrapped up in your limiting beliefs. Limiting beliefs are the stories you tell yourself about yourself, which can sometimes be hard to see as “stories” because you’ve been telling yourself the same thing for so long you start to believe it as fact. Some examples of this are: I suck at nutrition. Diets don’t work for me. I have no discipline or self-control. I don’t have upper body strength because I’m a woman. (< I hear this one a lot, actually.) Why am I so lazy? What’s wrong with me? I mean, the way we talk to ourselves can get really nasty - and none of us are immune to it. Imagine talking to your best friend the way you talk to yourself.
This kind of language is very disempowering and it can be the driver behind the self-sabotage that allows you to stay stuck, because it’s easier to believe the story than it is to go through the hard part of making lasting change. It’s easier to decide, “Well this is just the way I am,” again staying in that fixed mindset, because if you argue for your limiting beliefs, you get to keep them, which means you don’t have to get uncomfortable because you’ve already decided change is impossible, so why try?
Positive affirmations are great, but when you get down to it, it’s not about whether the positive or negative inner voice talks louder, it’s about changing the limiting beliefs all together. The way you do this is to address your limiting beliefs head on and challenge them with small, winnable actions that lead to increased self-efficacy and this is where a coach can really help guide you.
Nothing is going to change if you don’t work at it, but the time is going to pass anyway. Is it really easier to stay stuck in a place where your relationship with yourself is a source of pain? Or is the challenge of pushing through and learning to write a better story worth the payoff? Everything in your life is a self-fulfilling prophecy. You will attain what you believe you deserve and are capable of. You get to write your story. You are holding the pen. So let’s start changing your story.