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What’s Holding You Back?

carpenter working with plane and wood at workshop

What’s Holding You Back?

Dr. Ted here! Each of us has the potential to be and do great things, yet we often don’t. And, from my experience – nearly 40 years of training and teaching – each of us exhibits a particular and predictable pattern, which holds us back. This pattern can sabotage our best dreams and hopes for success. It is etched deep inside and can seem logical and reasonable, yet it doesn’t serve us well. It derails our path to our greater good, our best self. Our ability to follow through with our plans for success falls short. Our dreams don’t always seem to materialize with the passion and delivery we think and hope they will. So, ask yourself: Why do I fall short of my dreams, my goals, and my success?  

Here’s what I know. There is a specific and deliberate course of action or, more truthfully, inaction you follow. It’s been with you since a very young age, and unless specific steps are taken to release this pattern, you will bring it to your grave. You will blame others, look for excuses, and never realize your fullest potential. It’s all about self-doubt. For over 20 years, in live programs with thousands of excited participants, I’ve asked this question: What holds you back? And the answer always comes down to not being “enough.” At least two predictable behaviors are evident when you are stuck in this pattern.   

You need the approval of others to make a decision.

You fear disappointing your family or spouse by making a decision they might disapprove of. You place undue stress on yourself, worrying they will not support you or, worse, they will patronize your decision. You feel stuck in the wait-and-see mode. Rather than listening to your inner wisdom, you bat ideas around in your head, trying to talk yourself into or out of the entire decision-making process. Self-doubt takes over, and you feel helpless, almost paralyzed to act.  

However, when you finally decide to go with your gut and your heart, you get in charge of your outcome and happiness. Honestly, if I had always listened to others’ opinions, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I’ve learned that by making decisions based on my instincts and gut, I can create the happiness I deserve.

You compare yourself to everyone else.

If you look at someone who has been in business for several years, you see their success as something you should have. And, in truth, when you fall short of their results and level of success, you don’t stop to think about the trials and tribulations they must have gone through to be successful. You can’t see their challenges, so those challenges never happened to you. You have no idea about their commitment level and the many shifts and re-directions they have gone through. You feel inadequate, incapable, and discouraged by comparing your lack of success to their success.  

However, you will discover the key to your success by acknowledging what you have already accomplished rather than fretting about what someone else has done. Focus on your path to success; celebrate the small wins, which will re-set your thinking. You are enough, and you can make the necessary pattern shift.