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Are You Hobbling Yourself At The Starting Blocks With These Limiting Beliefs?

If I'm criticised it means that there is something wrong with me.

This creates a fundamental unwillingness to receive feedback and to also be super-sensitive to the possibility of it. Which will you spend more time doing? Being you or being what you think will limit criticism? Feedback and respectful criticism do not mean that there's something wrong with you. Neither mean that you have to do something with them and even if you do decide to take them on board, they are a means to grow positively. Also, surely you're not so holier than thou - when you criticise people or give feedback does this mean that there is something wrong with them as a person?

What to search for? Why do you take such a rigid line with criticism? Which previous experiences does it remind you of? Can you honestly say that all criticism is created equal? For instance, couldn't you evaluate each situation and differentiate between disrespectful criticism, constructive feedback etc so that you don't have a blanket response for what are different types of situations?

I must try to please people all of the time.

You're setting yourself up to fail because 1) you cannot please people all of the time and 2) when you devote your time to pleasing people you are not being you; you're being what you think will gain approval. This is not a sincere and authentic way of being. You'd be better off being you and living your life in accordance with your own values.

What to search for? Why do you believe that you must please people all of the time? After all, I'd like you to find one person in your life that pleases you and others all of the time... Yeah, keep looking. What do you think is going to happen if you don't please people all of the time? Are these consequences realistic or even worth you being a people-pleasing doormat for?

I must always live up to other people's expectations.

I think it can be hard enough trying to live up to our own expectations without busting our backs trying to live up to the expectations of those around us. Again, you will find that if you believe something like this, you're not exactly going to be surrounded by people all trying to live up to yours and others expectations which means you'll feel frustrated and invalidated. The funny thing is that you don't even have to live up to your own expectations all of the time - cut you some slack!

What to search for? Where have you learned this idea from? What are the consequences that you think that you will face? Also evaluate whether they're short, medium, or long-term consequences. If you're still afraid of disappointing your parents, it's time for you to do some growing up because you're still in a child to parent dynamic. Funny thing is that I'm sure that they've disappointed you a few times and the sky hasn't fallen in.

I'm not good enough.

What does this even mean? It's this swirling cycle of not feeling up to standard. We all enter onto this earth being more than good enough and irrespective of what happens in our lives, including any eff ups on the parts of our parents, we are still good enough. Can we do certain things better? Yeah sure, but everybody can. Every single last person can. It's not about striving for perfection - it's about evolving and growing through learning.

What to search for? Why aren't you 'good enough'? What are your standards? Are these realistic and obtainable? Are you seeking perfection? Is your idea of good enough focused on one external party (like an ex/partner/parent) or on a general ideal? If so, they're just not that special and you're persecuting you over something that many other people ignore - general clap trap standards that don't have much meaning for real life. What is stopping you from accepting you now? List the reasons. Also recognise that good enough issues are self-rejection issues.

I shouldn't be disappointed - the world should meet my hopes and expectations.

I hate to break it to you but everybody experiences disappointment. Sometimes you will not have your hopes and expectations met. You are not being singled out. It is how you rise above disappointment and come through it. If you beat yourself up for experiencing disappointment, you never get to discover what's on the other side of it - better opportunities. The world doesn't 'have' to do anything. It's not about expecting to be disappointed all the time; it's recognising that it happens sometimes but you will be OK. It's not a rejection of you as a person.

What to search for? Why shouldn't the world disappoint you? List the reasons and evaluate how realistic they are. Have you experienced disappointment? Have you overcome it? Have you learned some positive insights that if and when this disappointment happens again that you can better handle it?

If I can change someone, it will show how much they love me and that I'm good enough.

No it won't. It will show how temporarily malleable they are but if people do not change for themselves, invariably they will run into issues because they haven't changed for the right reasons. You can only change those you have control over - you. If your idea of being good enough is based on external solutions being the solution to your internal problems, your masterplan is flawed. People have their own motivations, fears, thoughts, beliefs, actions, bodies etc - they don't need you coming into their lives trying to passive aggressively, passively or aggressively change them so that you can feel validated. If you're truly going to love and be loved, it will be based on mutual acceptance.

What to search for? Why is your self-esteem based on what others do? Self-esteem has the word self in it for a reason. Do you keep changing for others? This is highly likely because you will think nothing of abandoning you if you think it will get you the relationship and 'love' that you want. If you want to be loved, accept you and be you first.

When I feel bad about a situation, it will give way to improving it. Or When I feel worried about a situation, it will give way to the situation improving.

Feeling bad about or worrying about something is only going to give way to improving the situation if you do something with the thought process and act. It takes more than thinking and talking - most people end up feeling demotivated and stuck with analysis and talking paralysis.

What to search for? Why when you're faced with something of concern don't you act? What are you afraid of? What do you think that feeling bad or worrying can tangibly achieve? Based on previous experience, is this true?

If I allow myself to feel optimistic something will go wrong.

Er, NO. If you think being pessimistic is going to allow things to go right, you're very mistaken. It's not about being blindly optimistic, however it is about realising that if you prophesise doom and failure, you get doom because your outlook reflects your mentality which affects your actions whether it's the type of situations you choose or how you act even in what could be a good situation.

What to search for? What has happened previously where you believe that you feeling hopeful about it resulted in it going wrong? Can you think of at least one other reason aside from being optimistic that contributed to it going wrong? If you can, it's not optimism and you're actually being blinded to the insights that you could have gained.

There's no point in trying - the problems I have and my past experiences are insurmountable.

Er, NO. If I had ran with this belief, I wouldn't be where I am today. I have seen people triumph out of all sorts adversity and I mean the type of stuff where others would literally have given up altogether. It is never too late and your problems and past experiences are not balls and chains of shame. You can move beyond your family and you can move beyond previous pains and experiences. It's not going to be easy but it's far from impossible. It's why there are 365 days in the year and as many years as you have left.

What to search for? Why isn't there any point in trying? Might as well you get all of the objections out on the table now. If you've tried before, can you say you've tried every which way? Did you feel the same way about you each time? Did you have the same fears, beliefs, attitudes etc? Are all of your objections realistic? Would you be happy sticking with what you've already experienced instead of trying?

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