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Last Updated on November 26, 2020

8 Things to Remember When You’re Saying “I Can’t Do It”

8 Things to Remember When You’re Saying “I Can’t Do It”

We’ve all been in some pretty tough spots throughout our lives. Regardless of how good things seem to be, we all experience those moments that make us think “I can’t do it”, or “I can’t go on any longer.” These are important moments in our lives. They have the potential to make or break us on our path towards success and happiness, so we must make the right choices in these moments.

To help you find that crucial inner strength, I’ve put together a helpful list. I’m going to walk you through 10 of the most important things to remember that will turn “I can’t do it,” into “I can and I will do it!”

1. Persistence Is Often Key

Our persistence towards any goal is very often the key to whether we achieve it or not.

It’s not uncommon for the most successful people in our lives to also be those who were willing to persist through the most struggles, failures, and hardships.

If you are the type of person who gives up in the face of a challenge, chances are you won’t get far. If you think “I can’t do it” and then give up, obviously you won’t succeed. You need to remember that success comes through your persistence.

You need to be willing to face these struggles head-on and power through them. Remembering that persistence will lead you to success will help you overcome these hard times[1].

Find ways to remind yourself in your daily life that your persistence is key. It will often be the make or break characteristic determining whether you reach your personal definition of success or not.

If you want a great book on this topic, consider looking into psychologist Angela Duckworth’s book Grit. It talks about how passion and perseverance are the main determinants of our success.

2. Acknowledging a Challenge Leads to Its Correction

Building on the last point, it’s important to acknowledge the challenges you face. By acknowledging them, you can accept that they exist in your life. Then, you will be able to generate solutions to overcome those challenges.

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Also, be proactive with the mindset acknowledging that every journey will experience at least some struggles. Nobody’s life is completely problem-free. We all have our struggles to cope with and overcome.

Learning to accept that there will be challenges along your path will help prevent you from being blindsided by them as they arise. Then, you can acknowledge their existence and begin working towards creating a solution that works for you and your life.

3. Get Comfortable With Discomfort

When you feel like you can no longer do what you’re supposed to do and want to scream “I can’t do it,” remember that life was not designed to be easy.

We are all always going to be facing hurdles and overcoming hardships throughout our lives. If you can get on board and accept this reality, things will get easier for you. You’ll be better prepared mentally to face the challenges that pop up in your life.

Just because you’re accepting that there will be discomfort in your life doesn’t mean you’re being negative. Being positive doesn’t mean that you have to ignore all the bad things in your life. It just means looking at them realistically and developing stubborn optimism toward the future.

An additional thought to keep in mind here is that true growth begins when you step outside of your comfort zone. There’s no doubt that’s a difficult thing to do, but the discomfort you experience stepping outside of your comfort zone may be exactly what you need to make those big breakthroughs in terms of your development in your life.

So maybe it’s time to begin forcing yourself to make small steps outside that comfort zone of yours. Feeling unsure? Take a look at this article: Is It Really Better to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone?

4. Positivity and Gratitude Goes a Long Way

You can’t get mad at yourself from going through and experiencing a rough spell. We all experience those tough times; it’s just the reality of living a life here on Earth.

Instead of getting down on yourself when you’re thinking “I can’t do it anymore” and going to pout in a corner, think about how good it felt the last time you were successful at achieving one of your goals. Remember how happy that made you feel, or be thankful for what you’ve been able to achieve.

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When you're saying I can't do it, shift to a positive mindset

    So if you’re unhappy with where you are, move. You’re not rooted to the spot. Go write in a gratitude journal or do some mindfulness meditation to make space for some positivity in your mind.

    Remember, things could always be worse. We choose the mindset and perspectives we approach a situation with. We can choose to fixate on certain thoughts over others. Train yourself to see that silver lining because this positivity can go a long way[2].

    5. Remember Where You Came From

    When I feel like I can’t do it anymore, I often try to look back at where I’ve come from. I’ve grown a lot throughout my life and overcome some pretty tough things. If you’re anything like me, I’m willing to bet that you have also.

    Remember to be proud of the person that you’ve become today. Be proud of the time and effort you’ve invested in your development because it’s what has gotten you here.

    One way that you can begin to remind yourself how awesome you are when you hit these funks is to begin celebrating the small victories you achieve in your life. If you don’t celebrate these small wins, it’ll be hard to remember how proud you truly are of what you’ve achieved. This can help you through tough times as well.

    Remember, despite having possibly seen better days than where you are right now, you have also likely seen worse. You can and you will get through these tough times! Better days are on the horizon as long as you keep yourself moving forward.

    6. Breaking Things Into Manageable Steps Works Wonders

    Divide and conquer. Sometimes we stand in our own way by focusing on our biggest goals as a whole.

    If you don’t already do this, you’d be amazed by how much simpler even your biggest goals seem when you break them down into small, manageable steps.

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    The next time you catch yourself thinking “I can’t do it,” take a quick pause. Are you looking strictly at the end result? Or are you looking at the steps you need to take towards that goal?

    If you’re only looking at the final result, take some time to create a plan. The benefits of planning are further outlined by Gollwitzer in the book The Psychology of Action: Linking Cognition and Motivation to Behavior.

    Reflect on the individual steps that you need to take to achieve that goal. Write them out in the order that you’ll complete them and then get to work!

    By taking continuous small steps, you’ll ensure that you’re always making progress towards your goals. This will lead to momentum in your life that will help you overcome even some of the most difficult challenges you’ll have to face.

    Check out the following video to learn more about how to achieve your goals:

    7. Remember Your Why

    Remember your WHY — this is probably one of the best ways to overcome that “I can’t do it” feeling.

    Remember why you started on this path in the first place. Remember why you passionately pursued this goal. Don’t let that vision of yours slip away.

    Sometimes, we start with these visions that we are completely passionate about but lose sight of it over our journey. Then, we can find ourselves getting lost.

    When your vision and focus get a little foggy and you’ve lost sight of your passion, regain that crucial bit of clarity. Focus in on why that goal was originally important to you. Rediscover that passion that can put you back on your path towards success!

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    Write out what made this important to you. Leave it somewhere that you can easily visualize it. This will serve as a continual reminder to you for why it’s important to continue moving forward and overcoming the challenges that may get in your way.

    For more on how to discover your why, check out this article.

    8. Life Isn’t Certain, Accept It

    The final thing to remember when you feel like you’re struggling is that life is never going to be certain. Nothing in life is ever going to be 100% guaranteed for any of us.

    Additionally, sometimes things are just going to happen. You can predict or plan for everything in your life, but things will pop up and surprise you.

    Lucky for you, though, if you’ve embodied a few of the previous things mentioned on this list, then you’ll embrace these moments and make the best of them. Take uncertainty and treat those moments as opportunities to turn them into something good and positive in your life.

    Sure, you may not have been expecting your life to take some of these turns, but it may open your eyes to new things that you never even knew you wanted.

    Learning to embrace life’s uncertainty is one of the best ways to ensure that we don’t miss any exciting plot twists along our journeys towards our goals and our success!

    Final Thoughts

    I hope that you’ve been able to pick a few of these to try when you’re struggling with overcoming a challenge.

    You don’t have to use them all. You are a unique person and the combination of these which works best for you will also be unique to you.

    Overall, these tricks will help you turn “I can’t do it” into “I can overcome this, I just need to figure out how!”

    More About Positivity

    Featured photo credit: Jude Beck via unsplash.com

    Reference

    More by this author

    Mark Lynch

    Featured Life-Balance, & Personal Development Author

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    Last Updated on January 19, 2021

    How To Overcome Self Imposed Limitations For Goal Setting

    How To Overcome Self Imposed Limitations For Goal Setting

    When it comes to setting our goals we need to take a few things into account – what we need to do to start achieving our goals, how we’re going to achieve our goals and what our motivations are behind them.

    For many of us goal setting can bring up a sense of anxiety which usually comes down to our limiting beliefs. These manifest as thoughts around our lack of ability, our current situation, expectations from others and comparing ourselves with other people’s lives. All of these results in us setting goals that may not be inlined with what we truly want and our motivations are not focused on our inner growth and development.

    Limiting beliefs are usually those negative thoughts you have about yourself like thinking you’re just not clever enough or believing that you’ll fail. Ambition can be hard for a lot of us since limiting beliefs can make us think that high ambition will only lead to failure and disappointment.

    But research says that aiming high and having big ambitions actually makes you happier and here’s why.

    Ambition Is The New Happy

    It’s typical for people to assume that with more ambition comes more risk of failure but this is actually a pessimistic view and one that probably belongs to someone who typically isn’t ambitious. Research has found that ambitious people generally tend to be more satisfied than those who have lower expectations.

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    The outcome of several studies show that when people set goals, they have two factors in mind – expectancy (how likely you are to succeed) and value (what the process will do for you). When we set limiting goals or goals that are ‘safe’ and easy to achieve, we don’t get any value from them and get no real sense of achievement or satisfaction. In other words, people who focus on the value of the goal rather than the odds of being successful or not are much happier in the long term.

    So to overcome self imposed limitations, the key is all about stretching yourself, aiming high while not focusing on the potential failures but also with a sense of belief that it can be achieved.

    How To Overcome Self Imposed Limitations:

    When you think of a big goal you want to achieve what comes into your mind? Do you think you’re not good enough? Not smart enough? You don’t have the education or the money? Do you worry about what people will think?

    If any of these crop up then they are limiting beliefs. These are usually a result of an accumulation of negative ideas, thoughts and beliefs that have built up over your entire lifetime. They most likely came from others, intentionally or unintentionally, as we made our way into the independent world.

    The problem with these limitations is that they create thoughts that stop us from believing we are capable of achieving big things. They make us just settle for our lot in life and never allow us to go after anything that will benefit our happiness and sense of wellbeing. As you can see this is a pretty dangerous mindset as it manifests as fear that we’ll fail or be judged for going after what we truly want.

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    1. Investing In Your Self-Development

    It’s important to realise that happiness starts from within. If you find yourself having doubts about your abilities, then it’s worth looking into working on your personal development.

    If you make excuses around your situation like the the town you live in is too small for good opportunities, you’ll put something off until next year when you might have more money, your family wouldn’t approve, or you’re just too old now, then these may just be excuses in disguise. Most of the time anything is possible. When we make excuses, they can be hiding a deeper issue of low self-confidence and self-limitations.

    You essentially need to stop identifying with the limiting beliefs and don’t allow yourself to be defined by them. Working on your confidence, shifting your perspective and cultivating a positive mindset towards yourself and your goals will create a good basis moving forward.

    2. Don’t Give In To Societal Pressures

    This is a biggie when it comes to limiting our ambitions. There is an immense pressure to conform to social norms but what are social norms anyway? All they are, in essence, is an accumulation of other people’s opinions and ideas imposed on the masses who and has become some kind of universal rule that people should live by.

    No one has the right to make you feel like you can’t follow your dream if that’s what will make you truly happy. People have their own lives to worry about so make sure you just stick to concentrating on yours.

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    3. Don’t Listen To Negative Opinions

    We can get very swayed by what other people think and say especially if they are close to us. It can have the power to stop someone going after their goals and this really is a sad state of affairs. By doing this we are giving our power to other people which naturally leads us to feel less happy.

    Even when we’re on our goal journey, we can come across people who have negative opinions about your decisions which can lead us to question whether this is the right thing to do. The key is to understand whatever negative speak you hear, know that it is coming from people’s own fears, insecurities and issues. Make sure you surround yourself with positive people who support your goals and encourage you to carry on.

    4. Break The Habit Of Assumptions

    Assumptions are a huge ambition killer. Our limiting beliefs cause us to come to all sorts of incorrect conclusions based on what we think we know. But most of the time we don’t have all the information or we base it all on past experiences. We like to seek out examples in our lives for how it didn’t work before and apply this negatively to our new ideas and goals.

    If this sounds familiar then you need to test your assumptions, and by this I mean finding ways and evidence that break the pattern of your self-imposed limitations. Take actions that test whether your past judgements and conclusions are actually untrue. By doing this you can build a sense of empowerment, give your mind proof and a different perspective on the situation.

    For example, if you want to go back to studying but you think that, because you were never motivated at school, the same will happen again, then perhaps take a short course in something you’re interested in and see if this belief really is true. The chances are you weren’t motivated at school because you lacked any interest in what you were learning but now your priorities and interests have changed. By doing this you give yourself a chance to prove that what you believe isn’t actually true and gain self-empowerment.

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    5. Stop Comparing Yourself To Others

    Last but not least, we need to stop comparing ourselves to other people. We all have a tendency to do this and it only brings up dissatisfaction and a sense of failure if we see other people doing ‘better’ than us. Of course, this really is just an illusion. We are all on different paths with our own set of limiting beliefs that we’re battling with. It all comes down to assumptions again – we cannot know what is going on in other people’s lives so it really is pointless to compare ourselves to them. It’s really unfair to do this to ourselves since we’re making comparisons with something we don’t have full knowledge of.

    Give yourself a break – understand that you really can achieve anything and all you’ve got to do is believe in yourself and believe it can be possible. So aim high and live a much more fulfilling and happier life.

    Featured photo credit: Vijay Putra via pexels.com

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