You are not smart enough.
You will fail.
You will never be good enough.
That's what I told myself for years. Those are the limits I put on myself. Those are the things I told myself to keep my expectations extremely low.
They can't say you're a failure if you don't try, right?
I lived my life in a constant state of “you can't”. No one else put limits on me. No one told me I couldn't be successful. That's just what I told myself.
So why was I my biggest enemy?
That's a question for the therapists out there. I'm sure I'm was a textbook example of low-self esteem. And I don't really care about the reasons why I told myself these lies.
What I care about is how I finally came to my senses.
My story involves my hidden dream to get a college degree. Through a series of unfortunate events, I came to the realization I was the only one who could save me. And for me, that meant getting a college education. I wanted that piece of paper that proved that I was smart enough.
And I excelled in school. I graduated with a 4.0 in my Master's program. I don't say this to brag, rather I say this to show how ridiculous my perceptions were.
Of course I was smart enough! I just never tried before.
I just got really, really good at listening to the lies I told myself. But once I realized I did have potential, everything changed. It opened doors I never knew existed. For God's sake, I barely finished high school, and now I'm getting a doctorate! Talk about a change in perception!
Why am I telling you this?
Because you need to know what lies are holding you back? What limitations have you set on yourself? What perceptions are stopping you from achieving your full potential?
I don't think you need years of therapy to get beyond these lies. I just think you need to realize that only you have the power to change them.
Yes, thanks for the self-help pep talk. But what does this have to do with my business?
I believe your level of confidence directly impacts your bottom line.
If you are self-employed, only you have the power to change your business. Only you have the power to improve your situation.
For me, it all involved education. My personal belief is that education is the key to self-employed success. But for you, maybe you're limiting yourself in other ways.
Maybe you're not going after a lucrative account because you don't think you're good enough make the deal.
Maybe you're not increasing your prices because you don't think you're worth it.
Maybe you're not giving 100% because you're already bracing yourself for failure.
Whatever nonsense you're telling yourself, it's time to stop. Figure out what you can do to change the negative internal dialogue that is stopping you.
Because you're the only one setting limits. Get beyond those limits, and you can achieve anything.
Liesha Petrovich is passionate about micro business education. Doesn’t sound sexy does it? But teaching micro business owners how to create success and freedom is. Learn more at Micro Business Essentials and follow her on Twitter
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