On Monday, April 25 Categories:

What's holding you back? An unknown individual said "It's not who you are that holds you back, it's who you think you're not" What you truly believe about yourself sets the tone for choices you make in your life.

It is important to identify the messages our subconscious reinforces about what we really believe about who we are. This is not an easy task to accomplish, because it often involves some real introspection and often we find something painful in our revelations. If you can give yourself the time to work on this, either on your own or with the help of a professional, you'll open yourself up for true growth in any aspect of your life.

A simple exercise is to sit in a comfortable quiet place where you won't be disturbed for 10-20 minutes. Take out a piece of paper and a pen and write the words "I am", then just write down as many completions to the sentence as you can think of. Don't think about it too hard, just write whatever comes to mind and don't censor yourself. There may be thoughts you come up with that make you uncomfortable; those are likely the very beliefs you have deep down about yourself that you need to address. In my case, one of my biggest struggles is my fear of public speaking. I have used my feelings about my appearance to justify choices I have made and in the end, these choices inhibited my personal and professional growth. Understanding that, I was able to take positive steps to affect change.

So, what can you do to break through your barriers? Here are 5 exercises to help you:

Visualization - Think of a picture, a mental movie of yourself doing something you really want to do and that you're doing it successful. Be as specific as possible and write it down! Every day, run this "movie" in your mind for 30 days.

Affirmation - Create a list of at least 3 statements that you say to yourself that tend to limit you, then rephrase it so that it empowers you instead. For example. "I am overweight." Change it to "I am going to substitute a piece of fresh fruit for that bag of chips when I get hungry for my evening snack." Again, write it down! Say them out loud to yourself several times a day or read them for the next 30 days.

Education - Write down at least 3 things you can do NOW to further your education that relates to your goals. Association - Write down 3 individuals that you should spend less time with because they detract from achieving your goals. Then write down 3 individuals you should spend more time with.

Action - Write down what you will do in the next 10 days to move forward. Make a checklist! Cross them off your list as they are done.

Fear is one of the strongest, if not the strongest, emotion that controls who we are and the choices we make in our lives. When we fear something, we act in ways that support our belief in that fear. Fear leads to inaction, which is in itself, a choice. In business, our biggest fear is the fear of failure. We are so afraid of not succeeding that we often choose not to even try something new. Fear of failure keeps one from realizing their true potential; how do you know what you're capable of if you never step out of your comfort zone? Most of us are afraid to step out of our comfort zone, because we think it's easier than facing our fear.

The truth is, by staying within our comfort zone, we give our power away to that fear and that is a real drain on your energy. For years I refused to go on video or even worse, a web cam! I spent so much time and energy justifying why I couldn't do it. Finally, after a lot of prodding from peers that knew I had to face this fear, I got in front of the camera. Was it hard at first? YES! But after I did it, I literally got a rush of energy because I had a true sense of accomplishment. This first step gave me the courage to do it again and eventually go on live video. I won't lie, I was scared, but the more I did it, the easier it got and it gave me the confidence to take another step out of the box. The bottom line is that the only thing holding you back is YOU. Change your thoughts and take action, you'll be glad you did!

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Deb Lane has been marketing online since 1998 and has been a small business owner since 1993. Among other things, Deb is the business manager for Marketers Edge, the business she co-owns with her business partner, Stephanie Remers. Marketers Edge specializes in providing online marketing tools for both online and offline businesses, as well as help for those seeking to work from home. To learn more about Deb and Marketers Edge, please visit http://marketers-edge.info

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