As humans, we have limitless possibilities for our growth potential. We can be more than we are, do more than we do, and contribute more to humanity. We base our limitations on our beliefs and actions we take. That’s right; all our limitations are self-imposed.
We can be so much more than we are right now. Each of us is continually changing in some form. But are we allowing these adaptations to expand our authentic selves into the limitless being that we are?
The limitations we think are in place arise from the egoic mind. And somewhere along the way, we agreed, and a wrong belief about ourselves emerged. I’m not saying that it’s easy to overcome, but we can; once we notice the way the ego uses its voice against us. All of us can accomplish all we dream of doing if we release the self-imposed limitations.
We can do things that are greater than ourselves. If you believe nothing exists beyond a certain boundary, then you’ll never test the veracity of that belief, and you’ll never discover new possibilities. The most extraordinary acts are accomplished by ordinary people doing something a little extra and stepping outside their personal comfort zone. I often wonder how much human potential lies unrealized and untapped, how much we are limited by our own fears as well as by social, cultural, religious, and self-imposed limitations. If we can break through those, how far might we go as individuals, as a species? — Juliana Buhring
How does Our Self-Image Play a Role?
The view we have of ourselves has a direct impact on the egoic’s voice of imposing limitations. If our self-image is negative, then we have low expectations of ourselves.
Self-limiters make excuses and blame others for our poor performance. We compare ourselves to others and diminish their achievements by telling ourselves they were lucky or whatever to keep us caged in our limiting beliefs. The only way to change this viewpoint is to improve our self-image.
To accomplish this, we have to recognize that fear is behind all our feelings of unworthiness. Fear is a natural warning sign, but it can’t paralyze us. We need to notice it, feel it, and then determine if it’s a legitimate reason not to move forward. Most of the time, our anxiety is unfounded, and by taking action, we can prove it to ourselves.
We’ve allowed the egoic mind to judge ourselves into believing that we aren’t good enough. But it’s a lie – we are worthy just as we are. As we start to believe in our worthiness, we allow our authentic selves to encourage us, and our self-image improves.
Fear echoes your self-defined limitations, not your actual ones. To change your self-image, you must face what scares you. ~ Vironika Tugaleva
What are Self-Imposed Limitations?
We all have dreams for our lives, but we allow the ego to fill our minds with negative thoughts that inhibit us from achieving our objectives. The egoic mind tells us we can’t; it’s scary, we’ll fail, or it’s impossible. It will also be concerned about what others will say about us. So, with all this playing through our mind, we choose the simplest option, which is to do nothing. Become stagnant and thwart our own dreams.
By imposing these limitations on ourselves, we receive little criticism, and it comforts our ego. However, we find ourselves feeling unhappy and dissatisfied about the choice. The shackles of these restrictive beliefs block us from reaching our boundless potential. When we set limits, we restrict what we can achieve. We can’t grow beyond the arbitrary standard we imposed upon ourselves, even if we are fully capable.
Now, if we set our expectations high, this may not happen, but our egoic voice and the voice of society keep this from occurring. Most of the time, we set our outlooks relatively low, so if we don’t meet them, we aren’t too disappointed.
Remember: We all get what we tolerate. So, stop tolerating excuses within yourself, limiting beliefs of the past, or half-assed or fearful states. ~ Tony Robbins
Our Expectations Influence Out Outcomes
Research from the University of California found that people with higher expectations are satisfied and happier than those who are less ambitious. Aiming high is about believing in ourselves. This confidence in our likeliness of success helps us to see our worthiness. We recognize our value, our abilities, and therefore we have the intention to reach our aspirations.
When we set safe goals, ones that are easily achieved, we lose the sense of accomplishment. We don’t have the fulfillment we would if we aimed higher. Our authentic selves look at the outcome–did we learn, did we help–rather than the chances of being successful. This overall viewpoint allows us to be happier with whatever the result is.
As we can see, we can overcome self-imposed limitations by stretching ourselves. Having higher expectations of ourselves and not concentrating on possible failings. As we build up our self-image by taking action and moving outside our comfort zones, we create a new belief that we can succeed.
We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of doing, while others judge us by what we have already done. ~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Rising Above Our Challenges
As challenges arise in our lives, we can feel limited. This feeling can slow down our progress or entirely prevent us from trying. Fear keeps us from moving forward and holds us back. There may be thoughts of unworthiness or beliefs that we don’t have the skills. We tell ourselves we can’t do anything. This thought process leads us to believe our lives our out of our control.
We let our egoic mind take control of our imagination playing what-if games, which takes us down a treacherous slope. These feelings are just the tormenting voice of the ego, trying to keep us safe and not allowing us to move out of our comfort zone. When we believe the ego, we settle for existing.
Instead, when we face challenges, we need to rise above them. To believe in ourselves- that we are worthy. We can learn the skills to move us forward. We allow the soul’s voice to encourage us; we can do anything once we determine we can. Thus, regaining the control of the path for our lives to create our dreams.
The sad thing is, even though we know our lives aren’t working in certain areas, we are still afraid to change. We are locked into our comfort zone, no matter how self-destructive it may be. Yet, the only way to get out of our comfort zone and to be free of our problems and limitations is to get uncomfortable. ~ Robert Anthony
How Do we Open to New Ideas?
As we open our minds to innovative concepts and alternative perspectives, it allows our beliefs to expand. This change occurs because our minds are no longer closed. Listening to others’ opinions, especially ones that oppose our own, with an open mind leads to unlimited possibilities. It allows for creative collaborations and can significantly improve our likelihood of success.
By working on personal development, we gain self-confidence and recognize that happiness arises from within ourselves. We no longer hide behind excuses or blame others because we see new opportunities everywhere, and we take responsibility for our successes. We get comfortable feeling uncomfortable.
As we grow out of our self-imposed limitations, we are less defined by them. Our mindset moves away from being fixed into a growth mindset. Our positive perspective and newfound self-confidence allow the magic of flow in our lives and to see the synchronicities appear. Even if we aim high and yet fall short, we are more resilient because we realize that there are lessons to learn from each experience we have.
Expand your awareness and come out of all self-imposed limitations. It requires continuous learning and growth mindset. ~ Amit Ray
Discounting the Naysayers
Those that are close to us have our ear, and we can get swayed by what they say to us. These friends’ opinions can stop us in our tracks, even if they know the goal is important to us. But why are we giving our power away? Why is their unenthusiastic judgment so much more authoritative than our own? Are we trying to blend into society instead of standing out?
The ego cares about how we look to other more than our own happiness. But realize that people may be speaking to us from their own place of fear and not seeing what’s best for us. Don’t allow them to impose upon us their limitations. We need to surround ourselves with positive people who encourage us and support our goals- whatever they may be.
Make sure we are not our own naysayer. Pay attention to the words we use to speak to ourselves. Words are powerful and can be a catalyst for overcoming or a wall that blocks us. If we notice that our self-talk isn’t helpful, we can learn to reframe the stories we are telling ourselves, so we are an encouraging voice.
Do the uncomfortable. Become comfortable with these acts. Prove to yourself that your limiting beliefs die a quick death if you will simply do what you feel uncomfortable doing. ~ Darren Rowse
Letting Go of Our Assumptions
Conjectures are ambition killers. Limiting beliefs cause us to form incorrect conclusions based on our opinions. We need to realize that many times we don’t have enough information to form a plan of action. Also, remember that much of what we base our opinions on are our experiences. But the past isn’t an indication of the future. So, we are making many assumptions that keep us stuck because the ego reminds us of all the times things didn’t go as we wanted.
To release these assumptions, we need to look for the times that things went well for us. For those occasions, where we took the risk, and it paid off. We can ignore the notions and take small action steps forward to prove to ourselves that we are on the right path. These feats empower us to see that we can safely move out of our comfort zones.
Try new things regularly. By doing this, it increases our courage to take risks, even if they are small, so the ego can have proof that risks aren’t necessarily dangerous. Try a new restaurant, read a book outside our usual genre, or take a class we’ve always wanted to—these minor acts are ways to encourage ourselves. Focus on the overall gains that will occur, no matter the outcome.
There are no great people in this world, only great challenges which ordinary people rise to meet. ~ William Frederick Halsey, Jr
No Comparisons Allowed
Comparing ourselves to others is an act of fear of being our authentic selves. We are allowing others to influence how we feel about ourselves. They aren’t fair assessments because we don’t have all the information about struggles others have gone through. We are making assumptions that they are better than us, which is a lie of the ego. It deprives us of our joy and focuses us outward when the answers we seek are within.
We need to embrace all our differences. Fitting in or being normal is boring—we were all made to stand out as the unique individuals we are. We become empowered when we lovingly accept ourselves. Instead of brow-beating ourselves when we look at others, let’s celebrate their achievements. We can look to them for inspiration. Find out how they were able to reach their goal and look to see how their strategy could help us.
Make sure that the people we spend time with are ones that push us towards our dreams. We don’t want them comparing us to others either and making us feel bad. Find people who challenge us, inspire us, push us to be better, and encourage us as we move past our limiting beliefs towards our dreams.
What we call “imperfections” are illusions caused by expectation. They are a psychological warning that we are not seeing true potential, but self- imposed limitation. ~ Steve Maraboli
Have a Vision
Visionaries move society forward. Without a vision, we lack direction. Without direction, we limit ourselves to the external resources and opinions of others. The vision we have of ourselves allows us to see who we want to become and take intentional steps on that path. It means we are aware of the naysayers in our lives and that we are finding ways to overcome their negativities.
As a visionary, it requires us to take action. We recognize laziness is not an option because every minute counts. Maximizing the day is about reaching for our full potential—outside of our perceived limitations. This ability to master time allows us to learn from missteps along our path. We reframe our thought process and adjust our actions to better align with our goals. We are more easily adapting to the changes in our environment because we notice them. We know that our hard work is our actionable belief that we will accomplish our goal.
Our determination will overcome all that’s ahead of us because we have faith in ourselves. We also have proof to show the egoic mind that not all risks cause harm. Our vision overrides the illusions of the ego.
Every person takes the limits of their own field of vision for the limits of the world. ~ Arthur Schopenhauer
Our Authentic Self Has No Limitations
When we are inspired, during meditation, when we are in flow, we cannot comprehend limitations. During these times, we are our authentic selves. These times are magical, and we can feel it. We connect our soul to Spirit, and we only see limitless possibilities.
When we can drown out the egoic voice and the naysayers, it leaves us with the whispers of the heart. This soulful voice is always encouraging and only speaks the truth. It’s able to see the limitless possibilities ahead. It helps us to take the most natural path to arrive at the place we desire.
If there’s a misstep, then the heart helps us see the lesson so we can grow. The soul discerns that we are more capable, then the ego believes. It’s our enthusiastic cheerleader who knows that with persistence comes success.
In meditation or intense life interfaces, our personal view is often superseded by Self’s, causing our apparent reality and all of its limitations to disappear. ~ James R. Swartz
When you accept a limiting belief, it becomes true for you. All the limitations we think we have are self-imposed, whether they come from societies’ naysayers or ourselves. Don’t compromise your dreams. Realize that we hold the key to our self-imposed prison of self-doubt, indecision, and fear. Be brave and use the key by envisioning our success. Let’s not suffocate in our comfort zone, push past the limits we impose.
When we release our self-limiting beliefs, we take flight and allow our expectations to rise to new heights. Life has endless possibilities that your soul sees. Our Spirit is boundless. We can go as far as our mind lets us—don’t keep it grounded because of self-imposed limitations. Instead, get to know our authentic selves and go beyond. Let’s move past survival mode and move forward to thriving in this life.
I’m not interested in your limiting beliefs; I’m interested in what makes you limitless. ~ Brendon Burchard
Our present understanding doesn’t limit our possibilities. As we become more aware of the self-imposed limitations, we can change our life.