Reprinted with permission of Brian Tracy

Do you have any ideas or attitudes about yourself and your abilities that may be holding you back from great success and happiness? As it happens, everyone does.

In her wonderful book You Can Heal Your Life, Louise Hay says that each one of us has feelings of inferiority that are manifested (see VOCAB. below) in the conclusion that we are not good enough. We think that we are not as good as other people, and we feel that we are not good enough to acquire and enjoy the things that we want in life. Very often, we feel that we don’t deserve good things. Even if we do work hard and achieve some worthwhile objectives, we believe that we are not really entitled to our successes, and we often engage in behaviors that sabotage our successes.

The fact is that you deserve every good thing that you are capable of acquiring as the result of the application of your talents.

Overcoming Obstacles
You need to develop your beliefs about yourself to the point where they serve you every day in every way. Men and women who accomplish extraordinary things are just ordinary people who developed themselves mentally to the point where they were able to overcome the obstacles that stood in their way, and they kept on keeping on until the goal was attained.

The most harmful beliefs that you can have are what we call “self-limiting beliefs.” These are beliefs about yourself, most of which are not true; but they hold you back nonetheless. Sometimes you, or others, will say that you cannot achieve certain goals because you did not get enough education.

Questioning Your Excuses
The humorist Josh Billings once said, “It ain’t what a man knows what hurts him. It’s what a man knows what ain’t true.” It isn’t the actual truth about yourself and your abilities that hurts you; it’s the things that you consider to be true and that have no basis in truth.

The starting point of changing your beliefs is to get up the courage to question them seriously. Question your basic premises. Check your assumptions. Ask yourself, “What assumptions am I making about myself or my situation that might not be true?”

It’s a fact that we fall in love with our excuses and our negative assumptions. We fall in love with our reasons for not moving ahead.

The author Richard Bach wrote this beautiful line: “Argue for your limitations, and sure enough, they’re yours.” Very often, we become the prosecuting attorney in the case against ourselves. We dispute and argue and attempt to prove to ourselves and others that our limitations are real. And the less justification these ideas or beliefs have, the more adamant we become in attempting to prove them to others.

Whatever they are, resolve to challenge them. Hold them up to the light. Imagine that you had absolute confidence in yourself in a particular area. Then, act as if it was impossible to fail, and it shall be!

Action Exercises
Now, here are three steps you can take immediately to put these ideas into action.

First, accept that you are as good and as talented in your own way as anyone else you will ever meet. There is nothing you can’t accomplish if you really want it.

Second, challenge a belief or idea about yourself that is holding you back. What if you had extraordinary ability in that area? What difference would that make in your life?

Third, stop making excuses for lack of success. Instead, start making progress. Think and talk about what you want and then get busy making it come true.

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