What’s holding you back?

Men willingly believe what they wish.
Julius Caesar
100 – 44 B.C.

I work with a number of people to help them achieve their goals. But before I can help them, I need to understand what’s holding them back. Most of the people I work with think that their problem is lack of specific knowledge, lack of resources (usually money), or lack of connections. My biggest task is to get them to realize that the issue isn’t any of those things; what holds them back is their beliefs.

Simply telling them the true problem doesn’t solve anything. Typically, it sparks resistance: they can’t imagine their beliefs are a roadblock to progress. But the fact is, I spend most of my time focusing on getting them to view the world a little differently. If I can get people to change their perspective, if I can get them to see things from a different angle, then they change the way they do things. And when they alter the way they act, they get different results.

Now, you’re probably wondering how your beliefs could be holding you back. Let me ask a few questions:

  • What are your beliefs about money?
  • What are your beliefs about your own value, your self-worth?
  • Do you believe you know what’s best for others?
  • Do you believe you know what your clients, family and friends want? Do you believe you know how they think?
  • Are you convinced you know what you need to do to make your business or your life a success?

The reality is, you can’t know what you don’t know. Thinking you know what you need to learn or obtain in order to be successful often results in focusing on the wrong things. Instead of being open to new ideas and suggestions, you become fixated on your own ideas.

When you believe you know how something works or why things happen the way they do, you aren’t open to different approaches. Additional resources, connections or knowledge are of little value unless you can apply them effectively.

We often establish beliefs early in life and never question the validity of those ideas. Our beliefs are so ingrained that we don’t even think about them. That state isn’t conducive to learning and growing; it will hold you back.

If you really want to be successful, you need to start questioning your beliefs — all of them. The more you question your long held beliefs, the easier it will be to overcome what’s holding you back.

Till their own dreams at length deceive ’em,
And oft repeating, they believe ’em.

Matthew Prior
1664 – 1721

Copyright © 2014 John Chancellor


What’s holding you back? — 4 Comments

  1. Another great article which hits the nail on the head. In my training, we focus more on beliefs and attitude than anything else, as these impact on all that we do. I’ve found most people know what they should be doing and have the skills to do it, more or less, but it is belief that stops them doing it in many situations.

  2. Diana,

    You are correct. I am constantly discovering old beliefs I hold that have never been examined – and when I take the time to examine them, I find it so freeing.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.