• Dee Woolridge CIHt, CLC, RMT

How Limiting Beliefs Can Block the Flow of Success

This article was originally going to address how limiting beliefs can block the flow of money. Then I though, Its broader and deeper than that. Limiting beliefs block the flow of success and the flow of happiness for that matter.

Having money doesn’t guarantee success and success doesn’t mean that you will obtain money. However, success does resonate with a feeling of accomplishment, fulfillment and self-satisfaction that doesn’t always come with having money. Money is a tool to get the things you want and can be a measure of success but it is not success. Success is a feeling that comes from within.

Why do some people seem to obtain big successes and others, even if they want it, do not? I’ve worked with many people over the years that have tried unsuccessful to lose weight, perfect their golf swing, get ahead in their career, or have a loving relationship. What I find is that they have core beliefs that are unconscious to them that play in the back ground (the subconscious) and keeps them from reaching their goal, from obtaining successes, and from being happy. These are called limiting beliefs.

What is a limiting belief? I heard it once described as an illusion in the mind. I thought that was a clever definition because as a hypnotherapist, I help people change false or unwanted beliefs. Beliefs that we call programming and psychologist call conditioning. All beliefs are illusions because you cannot touch a belief. It is a thought. Not a thing. Even so, beliefs are very powerful and control how we function in our daily lives. Beliefs cause issues when there is incongruence between what your conscious mind wants and what your subconscious mind believes.

Example. Sam Malone

Sam Malone is a nerdy and shy guy who works in the IT department of his company. He loves his job and is very good at it. He’s had the security of his present position for seven years. Recently he purchased a home and now he and his wife are talking about starting a family. Sam is feeling a little pressure and he wants to make more money. He has an advanced degree and has shown the company how skilled and valuable he is, having saved them from IT catastrophe multiple times.

Sam gets a company memo and sees an open position being advertised that he is qualified for. The memo invites employees to apply before announcing it to the public. This high visibility position pays significantly more, has considerably more responsibility, and takes full use of his skill set. He’d be managing others and producing reports for senior level executives. Sam was told that he is a shoe in for the position. There is only one other person applying for it in- house so his competition is low.

Sam starts to apply for the job and as he fills out the application the subconscious beliefs begin to play…

“I’m not good enough. I don’t deserve it. I’m not good at talking to people. If I take this job, I will fail. I’m stupid.”

Sam says aloud, “I probably won’t get it. They are going to go with someone outside of the company. I’m not that good at writing reports. Maybe I shouldn’t apply. I’m not going to get it anyway.”

He shakes that comment off and thinks to himself how good it would be to have more money. He says aloud. “I need this job. The raise is salary is just what we need to start our family. I want this job.

The subconscious beliefs keeping playing in the background…

“I’m not good enough. I don’t deserve it. I’m not good at talking to people. If I take this job, I will fail. I’m stupid.”

Sam continues, “But I don’t know if I will get it. I probably won’t.”

Sam completes the application on-line but never presses send. He wants to look it over again after he finishes all of his work. He doesn’t want it to get backed up on his current projects. Sam leaves for the day and vows to get back to the application in the morning.

He comes in the next day and goes right to his projects. He thinks about the application and says, “I will look it over again right after I finish these calls.” He says to himself, “It sure would be nice to have more money and a cushy office with a door. I could get more work done then I can out here in cubical land.”

The subconscious beliefs keeping playing in the background…

“I’m not good enough. I don’t deserve it. I’m not good at talking to people. If I take this job, I will fail. I’m stupid.”

He follows that thought with, “ahh they will probably think I’m goofing off if my door is closed. As least in my cubical, they can see me working.”

Sam continues to work and work and work. He does everything except send in his application. He missed the deadline and now he can’t be considered for the position and the job goes to someone else.

Sam sulks and complains about having a short deadline. He justifies his missing the deadline because of all the projects he has to complete and the backlog of work. He continues to wish for a better paying job, and beats himself up for missing the deadline. This pattern goes on for years to come. The problem…

Sam has an incongruence between his conscious and subconscious beliefs. The belief with the biggest emotional response has won. And unfortunately the emotions are strongly attracted to the negative beliefs that limit his successes. The beliefs that he is not good enough, smart enough and is otherwise undeserving of the job. These messages have been playing over and over in Sam’s mind for years and caused him to stay stuck in a comfort zone that is no longer serving him.

Though his needs have changed, his beliefs have not. The old programming, he probably obtained as a young child, is prevalent and functioning. It is calling shots in his adult life and sabotaging his ability to reach his goals. He is limited in how far he will go and what he is willing to do because of what he unconsciously believes about himself.

There is no doubt that we all have old outdated programming and limiting beliefs running in our subconscious mind. Many times we are aware of these beliefs. You can hear the voice in your mind say, “I could never do that” or “I don’t deserve it”. These limiting beliefs are fueled by fear and the ego part of you doesn’t want to engage. The ego goes into protect and safety mode. It cuts you off from setting goals, reaching goals and achieving success in a big way.

The five most common limiting beliefs are:

  1. I’m not good enough

  2. I’m not worthy

  3. I don’t deserve it

  4. The fear of failure

  5. The fear of success

Underlining it all is a lack of self-love. Think about your career and your life. What has been your experience? You may have limiting beliefs that block your success if you experience the following on a regular basis:

  • You try to get ahead yet you can’t seem to get much traction

  • You feel stuck or hopeless

  • Your motivation toward your goal fizzles out before you reach the end.

  • You have lots of incomplete projects.

  • You procrastinate

  • You talk yourself out of things that can be potentially good for you.

  • Trying new things gives you anxiety

  • It’s difficult for you to accept a complement

  • You have issues with money, i.e. it’s hard to earn, hard to keep and you never have enough.

  • You hardly ever put yourself first

What to do about it?

My first advice is to get a coach or a hypnotherapist. Life coaches focus of what you want in the now and your present goals. Hypnotherapist will do the same plus help you clear blocks that are tied to the past. Both are skilled at spotting limiting beliefs to success and how to help you break the cycle.

If you prefer to work on your own, there are a number of other way to clear your subconscious data base of limiting beliefs. Here are a few to consider:

  • Awareness- Being aware that you have them. What is your self-talk? What is your mind chatter saying? If you hear it and know that it’s an illusion and not the truth, you can stop it immediately by saying, “STOP IT. This is not me. This is just a thought I made up. It’s not true. It’s not real.” Then immediately shift your thoughts to something happy and positive.

  • Flip it - Make a list of your dream goals. Say each one out loud. See what negative feelings come up with each dream goal then write it down. Take the negative thought and flip it – meaning change it into something good or what you really want. For example: Sam’s dream goal is to get a promotion. The negative thought that comes up is: I don’t deserve it. Sam flips that thought into a positive affirmation that says, “more and more each day I know I deserve this promotion.” Say these affirmations over and over each time a negative limiting belief comes up.

  • Tiny voice - when you notice the limiting beliefs playing in the background, give them a voice. Not just any voice. Give them a tiny voice. Make it as silly and munchkin like as you can. Say the limiting belief in the tiny voice over and over until it make you laugh or loses its power or both. You can’t possibly take whatever the voice is saying seriously when it’s silly.

  • Choose the best you - When those success stealing beliefs pop in your head, acknowledge that it is part of you that is trying to protect you somehow. Close your eyes and visualize that part of you that is fearful, stuck, unfulfilled, unworthy, undeserving, sad, etc. Now right next to that unrealized version of you, see yourself like you want to be. See the realized, strong, vibrant, courageous you. See this self surrounded by light and the glory of having achieved success by reaching your goal. Now, visualize the two versions of you side by side and allow yourself to choose between the two. Chose the self that gives you the most joy. Hopefully you choose the realized version of you that seems to be getting even more happy and bright as the other version of you gets smaller and further away. Stay with the visualization until the shrunken version is completely gone and the realized version is strong and vibrant.

These are just a few ways to clear limiting beliefs. I use many different methods in my hypnotherapy and coaching practice such as Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), Eye Movement Therapy, Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) and others. When the beliefs that limit progress are cleared, your world begins to shift. You become alive and begin to live your life on your terms. You become more courageous, and content. Each success begets another. You’ll come to expect only the best. If a limiting belief resurfaces, you’ll know exactly what to do to nip it in the bud and carry on making and reaching your goals.

For more information about limiting beliefs and how to clear them, contact Dee Woolridge, CIHt, CLC, RMT at dee@hchypnosis.com or go to www.hchypnosis.com

Love and Light

Dee Woolridge, CIHt, CLC, RMT

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