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Limiting beliefs are thoughts or opinions that you believe to be the absolute truth. They tend to have a negative impact on your life by inhibiting or stopping you from moving forward and growing. They are extremely powerful. If you’ve experienced them, then you’re not alone. Common limiting beliefs like, “I can’t do this” or “this is too hard for me” or “I’m not good enough” are phrases that take up way too much space in our heads.
Luckily, where there’s a will, there’s a way. So, allow me to share with you how to identify your limiting beliefs, how they hold you back and most importantly, how to overcome them.
How to identify limiting beliefs
According to the Webster Dictionary, a belief is, “A thought you’ve thought over and over again and you believe it. An acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists.” It is something that we have internalized quite strongly.
And what is a limiting belief? This is a thought that creates a result you don’t want, or it limits your potential. It’s a false belief that prevents you from pursuing your desires or doing something that’s important to you. Doesn’t sound like something that you want more of, does it?
A lot of the work that I do with my clients is working on mindset because that’s a big part of this journey. Whether you’re plant-based or new to plant-based, whether you’ve dieted a hundred times or dieted one time, no matter where you are or what you’ve gone through, working through some of these limiting beliefs can be incredibly empowering.
If you are still not sure what that entails, here is a list of some common limiting beliefs:
I’m not good enough
I’m not pretty or thin enough
I’m too old
I’m too young
I’m not smart enough
I don’t have enough time
I don’t have enough money
I can’t be my true self, or I’ll be judged
No one will listen to me
No one cares about what I have to say
Why you should get rid of limiting beliefs
All of these are very common limiting beliefs and limiting thoughts. And what happens is your thoughts influence your beliefs, which influence your actions, which influence your reality. It’s a vicious cycle, a cycle that is constantly repeated. But, not to worry, you can rewrite these thoughts and beliefs. Because they don’t tell your story. Your beliefs either came from somebody else or something else and you ended up adopting these thoughts.
And these past thoughts and beliefs really could be holding you back. Both me and Katie have dealt with this and we are constantly working on being aware of the thoughts that pop up in our heads and asking ourselves:
Is this actually true?
Where did this come from?
Who told me this?
Why am I thinking this?
The goal is to challenge these thoughts and beliefs that more than likely are not true.
You cannot create a new future if your state of being is in the past. And that ties back into a lot of these thoughts, a lot of these beliefs that you’ve been hanging on to for a really long time. It’s time to relinquish them.
Katie and I, have seen this with our clients. When you invest in your mindset, there are some really powerful things that can come out of it. If your thoughts affect your reality, then you can also assume that if you change your thoughts, you can change your reality. And that is powerful. You have the ability to change, just by changing those thought patterns that can be so detrimental.
Overcoming limiting beliefs with the power of journaling
The first step is to get real and honest about the thoughts and beliefs you’re holding on to. One process that we encourage is journaling. Journaling can be a great part of this process. It can supplement your letting go of your limiting beliefs.
To get started, set your timer for three to five minutes. Maybe put on some writing music or journaling music and really take the time to write down your thoughts. Write down the limiting thoughts and beliefs you’ve been holding on to. And as you write them down, think about these important questions:
Is this belief true?
Am I willing to be wrong about this belief?
Am I really this belief?
What if I didn’t believe this?
What would I do?
Am I going to choose to continue to believe this?
Am I truly ready to leave this belief behind?
Those are the serious questions that you want to answer over time.
Part of this process is getting past your limiting beliefs. Once you’re ready to truly let these beliefs go from your life, you can crumple up that piece of paper that you wrote everything down on and throw it away or even burn it. This can also be a reoccurring practice to have in your back pocket if you notice an old limiting belief trying to sneak its way back into your mind. So, the idea is to catch your old stories, your old thoughts, and your old beliefs, and replace them with new ones. And from there you have the power to write a new story.
Creating empowering beliefs
As you become more aware of your negative thoughts and limiting beliefs, you can start breaking them. So, your new thoughts are going to encourage your new beliefs, which are going to encourage new actions, which are then going to start shifting your reality.
What’s so liberating about the power of breaking free from these limiting beliefs is that it propels you forward on this journey of unlimited growth. And it allows you to tap into your true authentic self and see what it is that you can be, what you can do, and follow through on what it is you desire.
There’s so much in this life that you can’t control. But one thing that you do have control over is your own thoughts. And to realize that those have such a profound effect on your reality, how you feel and think about yourself, that has such a big impact on the rest of your life.
This is why all of us can benefit from taking the time and effort towards changing those limiting beliefs into beliefs that are actually true. Beliefs that are going to help propel you forward and help you reach the goals that you want to reach. Goodbye, limiting beliefs are hello empowering beliefs.
If you find this is something that you’re struggling with, I would really encourage you, when you’re in a safe space, to take the time to work through some of these limiting beliefs. Start to write them down and then do your best to rewrite those stories for yourself. Because taking action on this leads to results. It’s incredibly empowering. And this also builds your confidence. It breaks the chains that were once tied to these limiting beliefs, which is such an awesome place to be. It’s liberating. It will be hard work. But it will be so worth it.
To learn more about limiting beliefs or to continue this work, check out our online course “Positively Plant-Based.” Positively Plant-Based is a digital course that teaches you how to meet your nutrition needs with a plant-based lifestyle—and without dieting or restriction. We dive deep into mindset work and intuitive eating to help you strengthen your relationship with food and your relationship with yourself.
Get weekly guidance to support your plant-based journey while strengthening your relationship with food, including weekly plant-based recipe ideas, tips, encouragement and so much more.
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