Limiting beliefs are false thoughts about yourself that are holding you back. You may not even know you have them as the negative way we talk to ourselves is so normalised. Limiting beliefs come in all shapes and forms, but they usually instil a ‘less than’ opinion of yourself. If you are looking to progress further in your career, you need the mindset to match.
Especially if we don’t even recognise these limiting beliefs, we can easily get sucked into a cycle of self-doubt. Limiting beliefs are generalisations we have about ourselves formed from our past experiences. The beliefs we have about our careers can be particularly harmful because they hold us back from reaching new heights.
Examples of limiting thoughts and beliefs:
- I am not good enough
- I’m not smart enough
- I am too old / I’m too young to be
- taken seriously
- I don’t have enough time
- I don’t have enough money
- My family never had money
- Who cares about what I have to say?
- I am not worthy of success
- The economy is bad
- It’s too late to try
These limiting beliefs and thoughts then produce unproductive actions and habits. Then, we are unhappy with the results because we psych ourselves up for failure - aka - a self-fulfilling prophecy. Beliefs are powerful; they shape our thoughts, feelings and actions. So, of course, if you have negative beliefs about yourself and your capabilities, how can you expect to accelerate your career past its current state?
Read more: Executive coaching guide
How to stop limiting thoughts and beliefs from holding back your career
By acknowledging these limiting thoughts when they arise, we can work on replacing them with positive affirmations to finally break the pattern. By reframing your thoughts, you can accelerate the path to achieving your goals.
But sometimes, our limiting thoughts and beliefs are so ingrained in us they are subconscious. So how do you notice these beliefs if you’re not actively thinking about them? It all comes down to self-awareness, taking note of your feelings, thoughts and actions and recognising repeat patterns in your behaviour. This is why a Coach & Mentor is so beneficial, they are someone driven to get you towards your goals, and they often spot these behavioural patterns even before you are aware of them.
How to identify limiting beliefs:
- You are disappointed in an outcome, and it is similar to a previous event
- You hesitate to answer a question
- Questioning any “I am, I can’t, or I don’t” statements as they arise
- You feel like something is holding you back, but you are unsure of what it is
Take note of when you are thinking in this limited state. Stop to reflect on why you may think this way about yourself and your career. How are these thoughts helping you? If your friend was talking to you like that, would you be their friend? Your limiting thoughts do not have to become your reality. Once we capture and critique these limitations in action, we can work to correct them.
Read more: How to improve your career development
Correcting your career-limiting beliefs
It’s time to start prioritising what you want out of your career. Are you happy to stagnate at your current success, or do you want to reach new heights? To do this, you will have to correct your limiting beliefs. Get out a pen and paper, and write down new, positive beliefs and thoughts to replace your limiting beliefs.
- I am good enough
- I can do this
- I have an abundance of time
- I am worthy of success
- I have enough experience and I am
- always developing new skills
- I am the ideal candidate for the job
- I am confident
- Doors are opening for me
- I have limitless potential
- I deserve a fulfilling career
- It’s my time, and I am ready to accelerate my career
And just a heads up, just because you quash a bunch of limiting thoughts doesn’t mean they won’t pop up when you least expect it. Our self-talk is a lifelong journey, but it’s something we have the choice to improve on every single day. If you need some help correcting your limiting career beliefs, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.
I work directly with CEO’s, Executives and Ambitious leaders to Accelerate their Careers past what they thought was possible to reach new heights. If you are ready to stop getting in the way of your own career trajectory, check out my HOW TO ACCELERATE YOUR CAREER in 12 months or less half-day training. Quit stalling, accept you are worthy of greater success in your career, and let’s get you there sooner.