So much of business success can boil down to our mindset. Two people could know and intellectually understand the same strategies, but what can hold one back from achieving while the other thrives? From my experience in my own business and working with hundreds of clients is that it can often come back to beliefs we are holding on to that aren’t true and don’t serve us. In this episode, we’ll be tapping into what this looks like, exploring how to identify them, and some of the weird beliefs that have held me back.
The challenge with separating what is true from what is simply a belief is that they can both feel very much the same and very real. Our beliefs can become part of the identity we construct of ourselves.
What we can do, is really question and examine beliefs that we notice ourselves thinking when we are facing a new challenge or opportunity. For instance, these beliefs can often pop up and act as a roadblock keeping us between where we are now and where we really want to be.
For instance, one of my beliefs was that I was “too short” and that meant I wasn’t good enough. I believed that I couldn’t and shouldn’t have the success of other people because of my height. I felt like I would never have what other people have and it used to be major insecurity of mine. And I know saying that now sounds weird! But that’s the thing about our beliefs – they often are weird when we look at them objectively! Yours might be that you think you have big feet, weird-looking hands, an accent, or something else entirely.
Another of my beliefs that held me back was that I wasn’t good at numbers. I see and hear this a lot from other women I work with. Growing up, one of my sisters was really strong at math. I on the other hand was just average. And it’s interesting how when something else in the family becomes the “good one” at something, we can internalise that as meaning we are not good at it – or even bad at it.
So when it came to taking responsibility for my finances as I left home, I often left it to other people. I didn’t want to know about my finances, and looking back that’s because I felt like I wouldn’t understand them anyway and I felt embarrassed, fearful and ashamed about it.
I credit my fiancé Koden because rather than let me keep going like that and enabling me to keep my head in my sand, he really challenged me to understand my finances in my business.
It was really uncomfortable for me and I resisted. Now I realise that what was so hard for me was that I needed to shed my old belief that I wasn’t good at numbers. That wasn’t me anymore. Which leads us to questioning – who are we really if we shed some of these weird beliefs?!
It’s funny – I was interviewed by Kat John, who you’ll hear on the podcast on Tuesday and we were talking about creating online programs. I told her what had held me back for so long was the belief that creating an online program wasn’t something I could succeed at because I was Australian and not American. Again, sounds rather silly, doesn’t it! But I didn’t have any examples or role models of Australians who had created online programs, while in contrast, those I knew with courses or membership were American. And Kat almost fell off her seat – she said she had the exact same belief.
I encourage you to question your beliefs. Where is the proof? And what if you challenge your beliefs, or pop them aside for a little while and see what that looks like for you.
Our beliefs are permeable. And often, from my experience, they are some of the most powerful forces holding us back.
I would love to hear what weird and wonderful beliefs have held you back? Send me a message on Instagram @emilyosmond and share it with me!
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I acknowledge the Wurundjeri people as the traditional and ongoing custodians of the Kulin Nation: the place in which I live, work and play, and pay my deepest respects to their Elders past and present.
Emily Osmond is an international business coach and speaker, based in Melbourne, Australia.