Far from being the true character that lies beneath each and everyone of us, we are overlaid with the experiences we have had.
From the very earliest days where we have our parents, wishing us well each and every day, in their own way, they share with us and embody in us all the ways they have become.
It’s not their fault, it’s just the way they are, doing their best and infusing us with who they are. Good and bad. In fact there’s evidence to show that what they share with you, is what their parents shared with them and for generations before. And you’re the next in the cycle, maybe.
Then you go to school and your teachers lay a few limiting beliefs on you (“You’ll never be any good at math Julia“) and if you hear it enough, like the drip-drip of water torture, you start to believe it and, hey-presto, it happens more!
And finally in the workplace; a partner; so-called friends etc. all start to tell you that you can’t and you believe it. Because your behaviors stack up on each other with what you hear, you really do start to walk your talk. The way you’ve heard it.
And Henry’s words ring true. If you believe you can’t – you’re right! Well done! You get stuck in your rut of low expectation of yourself and hey, you’re right, you can’t! Sometimes even, it’s great to wallow in the ‘I can’t’ syndrome – it’s easier than sticking your head up and taking a bit of a risk (or so you were told!).
So, what if you looked for proof and started to challenge it – most often ‘proof’ is hard to find, if it was ever there at all. What if you asked yourself ‘What might it be like if I could?‘, instead of living a lie of ‘I can’t’ any more.
Don’t get me wrong, you can be assured that the drip-feed of limiting your beliefs, laid on you mainly by others, is a tough one to crack. You get used to hearing it and to believing it. And all those times sink in a little deeper under your skin, until whatever patterns you’ve been told, you really do believe and find hard to challenge.
Believe you CAN, because you can, whatever anyone else said to you. After all, who said they were right anyhow? And moving forward is so rewarding. Like an opening door, once you start, you will find many more opportunities you’ve hidden from, maybe unwittingly, start to open up for you. ‘I can’t’ suddenly sprays out ‘I can’ like you could never, ever have expected.
Remember old Henry’s adage, whatever you believe of yourself will be true, so let go of the bad beliefs and who knows how far you might get. You might surprise everyone, including yourself.