“Argue for your limitations, and sure enough, they’re yours.”
I was reminded of this quote from Richard Bach’s wonderful book, Illusions, as I was talking with Lisa, a woman I’d just met at a party.
Lisa explained that she owns a small hair salon, and said that she dreams of bringing in more stylists and growing her business. However, when she talked about her dreams, she finished by telling me all the reasons they will never come true.
Lisa went into great detail about how she isn’t smart enough, the economy is awful, she has no money for expansion, she doesn’t know how to market, and she wouldn’t have a clue how to manage people or deal with staff. Yet, she continues to fantasize that she will somehow own a large, successful, full-service salon.
Can or Can’t?
When I suggested that she might want to look at the things she can do to change this situation, instead of focusing on what she can’t do, she argued and pointed out all the reasons why it will never work.
If she continues in this vain, she will get to be right. Her business will never grow, her dreams will not come true, and it will never work.
What Lisa doesn’t understand is that in order for her to move ahead, she needs to focus on her goals, acknowledge that they are reachable, and find ways to meet them. If she doesn’t have the skills necessary to manage staff or market her business, she can learn. If she thinks she isn’t smart enough, she can find someone to mentor or guide her. There are always solutions, if she’s open to finding them. The most important first step is for Lisa to stop spending all her time arguing for her limitations and start seeing possibilities.
Possibilities or Limitations?
Whenever Lisa is ready to start moving towards her dreams by looking at possibilities instead of limitations, there are several questions she can ask herself. Some are:
- Where do I feel stuck or fearful?
- What do I need to know to move ahead?
- What attitudes or thoughts are holding me back?
- How true are these?
- How can I learn this skill or deal with this fear? (books, classes, seminars, mentors, etc.)
- What is one thing I can do today to shift this perception?
Once she has answered these questions, she will know what is holding her back and what she needs to do to move past whatever is limiting her. She will be able to see that options and solutions to any challenge are always there when she is open to seeing them.
Just like Lisa, many of us unconsciously argue for our limitations, and then wonder why we haven’t moved closer to our dreams. It may be helpful for you to look at areas where you feel blocked, and see what you are telling yourself about your ability to move forward.
Are you arguing for your limitations, or seeing possibilities?
It’s something to think about.
Please comment so others can benefit from your wisdom and experience.
For FREE worksheets on ways to empower yourself, see the Resources Page on our Inside Jobs Coach website.
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