Have you ever thought, “I need to do [something],” and the moment you go into the other room to do it, you don’t remember what it was you meant to do?
I do this. All. The. Time.
And of course, it seems to get worse over time and there are all kinds of jokes about Mommy brain and meno brain.
I once read an explanation of why this happens: our brains to some degree mirror the rooms in our house—once you physically walk out of one room, your brain “shuts the door” on what was happening there, so when you get to the other room, that intention is hidden behind a door.
It’s why you can sometimes remember what you meant to do by going back to the first room and standing where you were when you had the original thought.
You then notify your brain that no, this is important, don’t close this door, and everything goes smoothly.
I consume a lot of information, much of it through podcasts while I’m walking the dog. It’s my way of intentionally multitasking.
Unfortunately, these are times that I don’t have a pen and paper handy, so if something jumps out at me, I often forget it when I get home and close the door behind me.
When I hear something that I’m determined to remember, I usually just shut off the podcast and repeat it over and over to myself. (It’s okay, since I’m wearing earbuds, I don’t look completely crazy?)
No, it doesn’t always work, and sometimes I don’t remember it until I get to the place on my walk the next day and think, “Oh yeah, I was going to remember that!” My morning loop is always the same, and it’s littered with these little info ghosts.
A lot of the podcasts I listen to talk about brain science (a topic I really geek out about), and one of the concepts that comes up repeatedly is that of “limiting beliefs.”
That which we believe to be true, we tend to then perceive and experience as being true. We rarely call our beliefs into question, which is why they tend to become self-fulfilling prophecies. As long as beliefs remain unchallenged, they shape your perceptions and direct your actions at a subliminal or subconscious level. Your fate is more or less sealed—or, to be more accurate, your reality-making process is governed by your beliefs. Fortunately, each moment holds the potential to break the spell an unconscious belief may have cast over you. ~Steve Sisgold
I recently touched on this topic in What’s in a name? and it’s one that comes up repeatedly when I work with clients: if we can identify a belief (or a few of them!) holding her back, it makes reaching a previously “impossible” health goal less difficult.
If you struggle to reach a health goal and you’re having trouble identifying a limiting belief in yourself, Google the term and you’ll get a lot of “Top X limiting beliefs and how to overcome them” results—evidence that you are indeed not alone! You’ll know you hit “the right” one when you think, “Ouch, yeah, I feel that way!”
the next level
Last month, I heard what I think is the next level of this concept in a Good Life Project conversation with Jim Kwik, and if you need a visual, you can picture me muttering this for a good mile and a half:
If you fight for your limitations, you get to keep them. ~Jim Kwik
Because here’s the thing: your beliefs are largely unidentified/unspoken until we poke them to the surface. They limit you silently, in the background.
And once we bring them to the surface (ha—nope, I still can’t say “surface them” with a straight face), there is a moment that you have to choose to continue to believe them or discard them.
If you identify a limiting belief and you decide to hold onto it, it’s now a limitation you’re fighting for.
And the only reward is that you get to keep it!
make the connection
Most of us have a limiting belief or two (or more), and they are what subconsciously hold us back from greatness. Identifying them—and more importantly, choosing not to fight to keep them—can be the key to getting out of our own way.
Leave me a comment and let me know what limiting beliefs hold you back and what you might do to release them. It’s a very personal subject, though, so if you prefer, email me your reply instead! Ready to dig into this topic more deeply? Schedule a today!