Shyness, self-doubt, fear of speaking up, of being inadequate, of failing or getting it wrong. What do we have to gain from challenging our limitations? What if was easier than you think to turn them to your advantage?
When we have mindsets, thoughts, feelings and beliefs that stop us in our tracks, destroy our sense of freedom and ease with expressing and enjoying ourselves, it’s a common response to believe we have to first have to identify the problem, understand why it’s happening and then find the solution to fix it. But, have you ever noticed that sometimes the harder you try to fix things, the worse it gets, or at best, only small changes occur?
What if the key to changing limitations, problems or challenges in our lives, is not by identifying what is wrong you and trying to fix it? But rather, being willing to consider that nothing is truly wrong—and neither are you!
Eighteen years ago, I suffered vocal paralysis after a surgery, severely impeding my ability to communicate and undermining my self-confidence for years, especially after having all kinds of unsuccessful therapy trying to heal it. I could have continued to focus on my “problem,” but instead I changed my approach and began looking at what possibilities I had available and what strengths I had. This led me to changing not only my physical voice, but changing my whole outlook on my body, my life, my business and what I was capable of in the world.
It all started with stopping the judgments of myself and of what was showing up in my life and being willing to see beyond what I believed were my personal limits.
Here are 4 key elements for getting out of judgement and using everything you have to gain more out of life:
Cancel out judgements, self-criticisms, doubts and negative inner talk with gratitude
One of the simplest ways to stop giving limiting beliefs power, is to cancel them out with gratitude. When you choose a moment of gratitude, judgement loses its hold. Next time you catch yourself saying negative or unkind things to yourself, like, “Everyone is going to think I am so stupid if I do/say/ask this,” replace it with, “I am grateful for__________about me.” Every time you put gratitude and kindness for you in place of a criticism, doubt, or judgement, that gratitude increases. Every time you acknowledge what is great about you, you become more open to seeing what else is great about you. Turn every negative thought to your advantage; leverage your limited thinking by using it as an opportunity to remind yourself to increase your self-acknowledgement and self-gratitude.
Rather than focus on what is wrong, ask what’s right.
What if our weaknesses were our greatest strengths in disguise? What if the problems in your life are your greatest possibilities? “What’s wrong?” is a question we ask too often, and it’s time to change that, because if you keep asking for what’s wrong all you will get to see is what’s wrong! What if you started asking, “What’s right?” There are plenty of ways to do this. Anytime you start having self-doubts, feeling wrong, or are convinced you have a problem, ask:
“What’s right about me I am not getting, and what’s right about this I am not getting?”
“If I hadn’t decided this was a problem, what possibility would it be?”
“What have I decided is a wrongness, that is actually a strongness?”
Every time you start going to the wrong, flip that perspective on its head and ask, “What’s right?” instead.
Trust your inner, intuitive voice
Do you look to others to tell you if you are getting things right? Are you waiting for someone else to light the way for you and give you the answers and solutions? What if you never relied on anyone else to tell you what is right for you? One of the biggest ways we convince ourselves that we are limited is when we give away our intuition or inner-GPS in favor of what other people say or believe. We stop trusting ourselves. Now is the time to re-build it. You are the only one who knows what you are truly capable of, just as you are the only one who can truly stop you! Each day, connect with your inner-GPS and let it guide you by asking: “What do I truly desire? What would work for me? What would I like to choose? What do I know about this and what am I aware of that no one else is?”
Listen to yourself, trust you, and as this grows, the self-doubts and fears will melt away.
Be playful and curious
Do you know the phrase, “Inspiration is better than perspiration”? Anything we make significant and serious, or fixate over, becomes harder to handle or change. Instead of working hard to overcome limitations (which puts you back into the problem/solution framework), ask yourself: “How can I get around this with ease?” and “How can I use this to my advantage?” Also ask, “What else is possible here that I haven’t considered?” and keep your mind open to easy and elegant ways of changing things. Inspiration comes when you are relaxed, curious and playful, not stressed out and serious. Imagine looking at a problem in your life and asking, “How much fun can I have with this?” Would that make things different and interesting?
When you are willing to take judgement out of the equation, trust your inner knowing, and be playful and curious in your approach, problems can become possibilities and weaknesses can reveal themselves as strengths - and you can begin to have fun exploring how to use all of it to create more for you in your life.
Norma Forastiere is a business mentor, natural therapist and certified facilitator of several Access Consciousness® special programs, including Right Voice for You, Joy of Business, Being You, and Access Bars®. A self-proclaimed seeker, Norma began practicing mediation at an early age and then went on to study metaphysics and several energy healing and natural therapy modalities. A native Portuguese speaker with a proficiency in English and Spanish, Norma offers workshops and consultations for those willing to explore greater possibilities in life, communication and business.