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7 Negative Thoughts That Stop You From Achieving Your Full Potential

7 Negative Thoughts That Stop You From Achieving Your Full Potential

Do you ever wonder about your life’s purpose? In other words, has this thought ever crossed your mind: “Why am I here? What am I meant to do with my time on earth?” Many people ask themselves this at some point in their lives. For some, it is at the forefront of their minds. For others, it might be a fleeting moment from time to time. But one thing is true: we all wonder if we could be better or do more with our lives.

One of the things I write and speak about is self-improvement. I am passionate about teaching others to become the best version of themselves. But let’s face it – it’s not easy to change. Most people are creatures of habit – myself included. And according to brain science, once you develop habits, the connections in your brain for that habit can get very strong – and thus, difficult to change. But it can be done!

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Here are 7 common negative thoughts that are stopping you from achieving your full potential:

1. “I’m not good enough.”

Many people suffer from low self-esteem. Let’s face it — we live in a world that helps us breed bad feelings about ourselves. Since our culture values money, power, beauty, and youth (just to name a few), it’s difficult for most people to think that they will ever live up to society’s standards. But everyone has their unique gift to offer the world. I’ve even known ex-drug addicts who have turned their lives around and are now helping others get off of drugs and achieve their dreams. Sometimes a seemingly bad thing can turn into an opportunity.

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2. “There is too much competition.”

This is one I hear from everyone who wants to start a business or do something different with their career. For example, many people think about blogging for money these days. And yes, there are a lot of bloggers out there! But that doesn’t mean that you can’t be one of the successful ones, because there are many online resources to help you figure out how to do it right. So whether it’s blogging, social media, writing a book, or opening an ice cream stand, there will always be “competition.” The key is to not let it deter you from starting your journey.

3. “It will take too much time/effort.”

Time will pass anyway. Ten years from now, you will still be ten years older than you are today. But that doesn’t mean you should be the same person. Do you want to look back and say, “Darn! If only I had started back then, I wonder where I would be now.” Yes, success takes effort. And yes, it is worth it! So whether you want to go back to school, start a business, lose weight, find/fix your relationships, just do it! People who are self-actualized don’t worry about the time and effort that is needed to succeed. They simply want to be a better person and that’s what they focus on.

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4.”I don’t even know what my dreams are anymore.”

I don’t care if you’re 100 years old, I’m sure you had dreams at one point in your life. And if your memory is still intact, then you can remember them! What did you want to be when you were a kid? A fire fighter? A singer? A lawyer? A doctor? Whatever it is, you can probably achieve it. New beginnings happen all the time, but they all start with a dream. So even if you really, truly can’t remember your dreams, then think about what you love doing. What makes you happy? Find it – and then do more of it. Following your dreams do not always mean you have to get a new job in the meantime!

5. “I’m too old now.”

You’re never too old for anything! When I was in my Ph.D. program, I had students in my classes who were in their 50s, 60s, and some in their 70s! These people went back to school at that stage in their lives because they decided they wanted to become professors or simply extend their education. I’ve also known people who started new businesses in their later years as well. There’s nothing you can’t do because of your age.

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6. “It’s impossible.”

Nothing is impossible! Okay, except maybe teleporting yourself to a different galaxy, but even that could be possible someday. I have a friend who used to be over 500 pounds and he lost all his weight naturally and got down to 160! I have another friend who was awaiting a heart transplant, and it looked unlikely that he would get one since he has such a rare blood type. But he did – and now he’s thriving! I’ve known a lot of people who have overcome the odds to become their best self. Nothing is impossible unless you believe it is.

7. “I’ll never be successful.”

If not you, then who? People succeed all the time! Have you ever said to yourself, “Why didn’t I think of that!?!” when you see a new product on the market? Successful people don’t let setbacks stop them.  The movies Star Wars and Rocky were turned down by numerous production companies, but George Lucas and Sylvester Stallone never gave up! If they did, then we wouldn’t have those movies – which happen to be among the most famous of all time.

Anyone is capable of reaching their full potential. You just have to believe it! So erase these negative thoughts right out of your mind, and then set down on the road to being your best self!

More by this author

Carol Morgan

Dr. Carol Morgan is a communication professor, dating/relationship and success coach, TV personality, speaker, and author.

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Last Updated on November 15, 2018

Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

What do you think it takes to achieve your goals? Hard work? Lots of actions? While these are paramount to becoming successful in reaching our goals, neither of these are possible without a positive mindset.

As humans, we naturally tend to lean towards a negative outlook when it comes to our hopes and dreams. We are prone to believing that we have limitations either from within ourselves or from external forces keeping us from truly getting to where we want to be in life. Our tendency to think that we’ll “believe it when we see it” suggests that our mindsets are focused on our goals not really being attainable until they’ve been achieved. The problem with this is that this common mindset fuels our limiting beliefs and shows a lack of faith in ourselves.

The Success Mindset

Success in achieving our goals comes down to a ‘success mindset’. Successful mindsets are those focused on victory, based on positive mental attitudes, empowering inclinations and good habits. Acquiring a success mindset is the sure-fire way to dramatically increase your chance to achieve your goals.

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The idea that achieving our goals comes down to our habits and actions is actually a typical type of mindset that misses a crucial point; that our mindset is, in fact, the determiner of our energy and what actions we take. A negative mindset will tend to create negative actions and similarly if we have a mindset that will only set into action once we see ‘proof’ that our goals are achievable, then the road will be much longer and arduous. This is why, instead of thinking “I’ll believe it when I see it”, a success mindset will think “I’ll see it when I believe it.”

The Placebo Effect and What It Shows Us About The Power of Mindset

The placebo effect is a perfect example of how mindset really can be powerful. In scientific trials, a group of participants were told they received medication that will heal an ailment but were actually given a sugar pill that does nothing (the placebo). Yet after the trial the participants believed it’s had a positive effect – sometimes even cured their ailment even though nothing has changed. This is the power of mindset.

How do we apply this to our goals? Well, when we set goals and dreams how often do we really believe they’ll come to fruition? Have absolute faith that they can be achieved? Have a complete unwavering expectation? Most of us don’t because we hold on to negative mindsets and limiting beliefs about ourselves that stop us from fully believing we are capable or that it’s at all possible. We tend to listen to the opinions of others despite them misaligning with our own or bow to societal pressures that make us believe we should think and act a certain way. There are many reasons why we possess these types of mindsets but a success mindset can be achieved.

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How To Create a Success Mindset

People with success mindsets have a particular way of perceiving things. They have positive outlooks and are able to put faith fully in their ability to succeed. With that in mind, here are a few ways that can turn a negative mindset into a successful one.

1. A Success Mindset Comes From a Growth Mindset

How does a mindset even manifest itself? It comes from the way you talk to yourself in the privacy of your own head. Realising this will go a long way towards noticing how you speak to yourself and others around you. If it’s mainly negative language you use when you talk about your goals and aspirations then this is an example of a fixed mindset.

A negative mindset brings with it a huge number of limiting beliefs. It creates a fixed mindset – one that can’t see beyond it’s own limitations. A growth mindset sees these limitations and looks beyond them – it finds ways to overcome obstacles and believes that this will result in success. When you think of your goal, a fixed mindset may think “what if I fail?” A growth mindset would look at the same goal and think “failures happen but that doesn’t mean I won’t be successful.”

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There’s a lot of power in changing your perspective.

2. Look For The Successes

It’s really important to get your mind focused on positive aspects of your goal. Finding inspiration through others can be really uplifting and keep you on track with developing your success mindset; reinforcing your belief that your dreams can be achieved. Find people that you can talk with about how they achieved their goals and seek out and surround yourself with positive people. This is crucial if you’re learning to develop a positive mindset.

3. Eliminate Negativity

You can come up against a lot of negativity sometimes either through other people or within yourself. Understanding that other people’s negative opinions are created through their own fears and limiting beliefs will go a long way in sustaining your success mindset. But for a lot of us, negative chatter can come from within and these usually manifest as negative words such as can’t, won’t, shouldn’t. Sometimes, when we think of how we’re going to achieve our goals, statements in our minds come out as negative absolutes: ‘It never works out for me’ or ‘I always fail.’

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When you notice these coming up you need to turn them around with ‘It always works out for me!’ and ‘I never fail!’ The trick is to believe it no matter what’s happened in the past. Remember that every new day is a clean slate and for you to adjust your mindset.

4. Create a Vision

Envisioning your end goal and seeing it in your mind is an important trait of a success mindset. Allowing ourselves to imagine our success creates a powerful excitement that shouldn’t be underestimated. When our brain becomes excited at the thought of achieving our goals, we become more committed, work harder towards achieving it and more likely to do whatever it takes to make it happen.

If this involves creating a vision board that you can look at to remind yourself every day then go for it. Small techniques like this go a long way in sustaining your success mindset and shouldn’t be dismissed.

An Inspirational Story…

For centuries experts said that running a mile in under 4 minutes was humanly impossible. On the 6th May 1954, Rodger Bannister did just that. As part of his training, Bannister relentlessly visualised the achievement, believing he could accomplish what everyone said wasn’t possible…and he did it.

What’s more amazing is that, as soon as Bannister achieved the 4-minute mile, more and more people also achieved it. How was this possible after so many years of no one achieving it? Because in people’s minds it was suddenly possible – once people knew that it was achievable it created a mindset of success and now, after over fifty years since Bannister did the ‘impossible’, his record has been lowered by 17 seconds – the power of the success mindset!

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