How to Avoid the Hidden Dangers of Self-limiting Beliefs in the Pursuit of Social Proof

Seven ways to bust through self-limiting doubt.

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An unspoken requirement for becoming a consultant, speaker or writer is the necessity of building “social proof.” This includes writing for publications like Entrepreneur, Inc., Success Magazine and online multi-author groups such as Addicted2Success, Thrive Global and Leaders In Heels. The list is endless, as are the opportunities to be seen and heard.

The hidden danger in the pursuit of social credibility is allowing your success or failure to become your identity. When you begin comparing yourself to others, wondering why your article wasn’t good enough for an editor you pitched, or worse, when the editor doesn’t bother to respond at all to your submission, you may end up feeling rejected. Rather than learning from the success of others, a failure mindset keeps you focused on your own perceived negatives.

It’s important for you to contribute to and celebrate the wins of others along with keeping yourself and your emotions balanced. It’s easy to fall into the trap of “why not me” when people around you are winning, growing, and reaching their goals while you aren’t. It happens to the strongest of people. How do you keep yourself from falling into the dangerous pit of self-limiting beliefs? It’s not easy, but it is doable.

Follow these tried-and-true methods for maintaining balance and self-confidence as you work to build your social credibility:

1. Talk to God

He is the ultimate creator. Jordan Raynor, the author of “Called to Create,” says “one of the most beautiful parts of business is providing people with the means to survive, thrive and enjoy God’s good gifts.”

God put us on earth to create, to celebrate, to live out loud. He supports us 100 percent. He doesn’t want us to fall into self-pity, victimhood and failure. When we inevitably do, he pulls us out of despair the moment we ask him to, setting us back on the path to success.

2. Surround yourself with positive people who genuinely want you to achieve your dreams

Sometimes this requires you to go outside your comfort zone. You may have to reach out to people, tell them the goals you are trying to attain and ask for their support. Your group can include family, friends, or your kids. Online mastermind groups are important, but even more so are the people you can see, touch and connect with.

“Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.” – Oprah Winfrey

3. Build a kick-butt inspirational playlist you can cue up in those times you are feeling less than

Music reaches into your soul. It can renew your spirit while chasing self-doubt from your mind. Songs connect us to a creative collective of artists who spent years fighting to be heard. Music opens doors, knocks down walls and lifts us up.

4. If you aren’t already connected to one, find or create your own online mastermind group

Napoleon Hill tells readers of his book, “Think and Grow Rich,” to create a small mastermind group of people with complementary skills, so each individual contributes something unique to the whole. When you collaborate with others, the group contributes to and supports the individual successes of each member.

5. Surround yourself with affirmations and reminders of past wins to keep you motivated when things get tough

Visual reminders are powerful tools used by the most successful people on the planet. Whether photos of past achievements, a manifesto, diploma, a dream/vision board or Post-Its, positivity drives success.

“When you think positive, good things happen.” – Matt Kemp

6. Practice mindfulness

In comparing yourself to someone else, you inevitably end up stuck in the past or projecting into the future. When your self-talk says, “I’ll never be good enough,” or “I’ve always been a failure,” mindfulness helps you focus on the present. The simple techniques of focusing on your breathing, feeling your feet on the ground, your butt in the chair, and the most powerful tool of all, prayer, bring you into the moment. Creativity only occurs when you live in the present.

7. Make a gratitude list

When you are grateful, it is impossible to feel failure. Gratitude keeps you focused on the goodness in your life. It reminds you of what is possible, rather than your perceived limitations. An appreciative mindset keeps you focused on the positive, creating space in your life for success.

Every day you decide what you will focus on and give your energy to. If you are trying to get published, keep writing while you wait to hear from an editor you’ve already pitched. Find another publication to which you can submit your work. Success comes from the willingness to try, no matter what your present circumstances.

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