I’m writing this blog post in a hotel room in New Zealand and while it is minus 3 degrees outside, I have a warm glow in my heart because today I broke through a mental wall that has held me back for many years.
You see in 2002 I was involved in a sporting accident and badly tore the medial meniscus in my right knee. After reconstructive surgery my knee was held together by seven Teflon screws and I was told that my days of active sports were over.
That diagnosis planted a powerful limiting belief in my mind which was “Active sports are not for me”. Over time this belief became something that I simply accepted as a fact and never even questioned.
However at the beginning of this year I recognised this limiting belief for what it really was – a wall within my mind that was preventing me from living the life I truly wanted.
Armed with this new insight, I stopped telling myself that I couldn’t pursue active sports and instead started exploring HOW I could overcome my long-term injury.
This change in perspective led me to see a sports physiotherapist and together we designed a fitness program to strengthen my knee.
And today, after several months of training, I felt the thrill of the sun on my face and the wind in my hair as I went snowboarding for the first time.
The reason I am telling you all this is because I want to share with you the incredible feeling that comes from breaking through a long-standing limiting belief.
There is something truly satisfying about working hard and achieving a goal that you once thought was beyond your reach.
I’d also like to encourage you to identify and challenge your own limiting beliefs.
Perhaps your mental wall is something like “I’ll never find the love of my life” or “I’ll never find a job I enjoy.”
Or perhaps it’s a mental barrier that someone else has planted in your mind by saying things like “You’ll never amount to anything” or “You’ll never make it on your own.”
Whatever your limiting belief might be and wherever it may have come from, I encourage you to see it for what it really is – a barrier within your mind that you CAN challenge and overcome.
But contrary to popular belief, this is not simply about ‘positive thinking’.
If I had just decided to ‘think happy thoughts’ and gone snowboarding, I have no doubt that I would be writing this blog post from a hospital bed!
Happy thoughts are not enough.
The way to overcome a long standing limiting belief is to create a plan of attack and then do the work necessary to break down your mental wall.
For example before going snowboarding I obtained professional advice, bought a sports knee brace and most importantly put in a lot of time and effort at the gym.
So here then is a five-step plan for breaking through your long-standing limiting beliefs:
1. Identify your limiting belief and recognise it for what it really is.
2. Make the conscious decision to challenge your belief.
3. Seek out the information you need and create a plan of attack.
4. Do the work necessary to break through your mental barrier.
5. Enjoy the incredible feeling of satisfaction that comes from achieving something you once thought was impossible.
Whenever you overcome a limiting belief you reconnect with the hopes and dreams that were locked away behind your mental wall. This in turn gives you a boost of motivation and a whole new perspective on what is possible in your life.
So I hope you will take this opportunity to identify and challenge the barriers that exist in your mind.
Always remember that when you overcome a limiting belief today, you lay the foundation for a brand new tomorrow.
Until next time,
Dare to Dream!
p.s If you’ve ever overcome a limiting belief, please share your experience by leaving a comment below. I’d love to hear your story!