Sometimes the biggest thing holding you back from greater success is something you might not even be aware of.
They’re called “iceberg beliefs,” and they could be major obstacles that you don’t even realize. Andrew Shatté, Ph.D. and chief science officer at meQuilibrium, a digital resilience coaching platform, says that iceberg beliefs are the self-limiting beliefs we have sometimes below the surface of our consciousness. And they can be devastating to our confidence, state of mind, and achievement levels.
“We often find that an iceberg–like ‘I should get everything done perfectly’–drives people to excel, so it really does have an upside. But unfortunately, human beings, being what we are, we never get anything done perfectly,” he says. Constantly falling short of that yardstick can lead to sadness, shame, despondency, and frustration, Shatté adds. To root out these beliefs and get rid of them, try these five steps.
CHECK YOUR LANGUAGE A big warning sign that you have an iceberg is when you say things like, “That’s impossible” or “I have to,” says mental toughness consultant Andrew D. Wittman, Ph.D. and the author of Ground Zero Leadership: CEO of You. When you’re feeling fear or resistance about something, it could be a sign that you have an underlying belief that is triggering those reactions.
LOOK FOR ROADBLOCKS Where do you feel “stuck” in your life? Where do you overreact emotionally? Shatté says exploring areas with which you are dissatisfied and looking at why you don’t make changes can be a good way to identify self-limiting beliefs. Icebergs typically fall into three categories, he says:
Achievement. This is where you believe you have to get everything right and perform perfectly, or that you have to do everything yourself. Neither of those beliefs is possible to achieve.
Social. Beliefs here are often about a duty to make others happy or to perform certain roles for others. You may feel that you have to subvert your own needs to make others happy. Control. Here, the beliefs are typically chasing after impossible levels of control in your life and believing life will be better when you achieve them. You spend energy trying to achieve the impossible.
SUSPEND DISBELIEF Your icebergs may have been formed when you were a child, so they could be pretty well-entrenched and hard to shake, Wittman says. But once you find them, you need to give them a rest, even for brief periods, by suspending your disbelief that you can get beyond them. If that sounds impossible, you need to think again–you do it when you get lost in a movie or other experience that you know is not real, he says. Once you’ve silenced the belief, ask yourself how you can do the thing that you want to do but feel you can’t.
“If you say, ‘How would I?’ your brain will go to work and find all the information that would back that up, and so that puts you in the position of where you can, or at least you can find the solution to, whatever you’re facing,” Wittman says.
SET A STRETCH GOAL Once you’ve started mapping out a way to get to where you want to go, the next step is to set a stretch goal toward what you want to achieve, says New Jersey psychologist Patricia Farrell, Ph.D., and author of How to Be Your Own Therapist: A Step-by-Step Guide to Taking Your Life Back. Choose a goal that will help move you in the direction of your overall objective, but make sure it’s slightly out of your comfort zone, she says. You may not achieve it at first, but the more you work toward them, the more confidence you will build–and confidence is the enemy of self-limiting beliefs.
GET USED TO BEING OFF AUTOPILOT Walking around with self-limiting beliefs is like being on autopilot, letting some other forces tell you how to maneuver in the world, Shatté says. When you start to identify and eliminate those beliefs, it can be very liberating, he says.
...blown away, they really speak to me in a huge way
Hello Clyde, I came across your podcasts and I'm in my second day of listening. I blown away, they really speak to me in a huge way. Thank you very much for taking the time to do something that is without a doubt helping people through their day and their life, including me!! Take care. Shawn
I love this podcast. I had been looking for a good motivational podcast to listen to every morning when I found this one; it’s short enough to fit into my morning routine and provides great insight to start my day!
Perfect addition to my everyday. Builds motivation.
Great show, super helpful and informative
I love starting my days by listening to this show. I’ve been listening to it every day for six months now and every episode has helped me improve and become better. It’s super inspiring and motivating. I love how every episode starts with a thought of the day and is packed with the most incredible information you could possibly get for the day. Absolutely wonderful show I highly recommend everyone listen to it. They’re truly the best seven minutes of the day.
Everyone needs this podcast. No matter who you are, how old you are, or where you are in your life, these are principles that everybody needs to be reminded of and it is a perfect way to start your day off and set that positive vibe. This is easily my favorite podcast for self-development.
from United States of America
I could listen to this every day and I would be better for it. This has helped me a lot in areas in my life. The only negative I would say about it is 7min is not long enough.
Ever have one of those middle of the day meltdowns? But you still have hours of stuff to do and you can’t leave the office and medicate for two hours. Breathe. Headphones. 7 minutes. It works for me every time.
I was surprised that 7 minutes of excepts of speeches could have anything new to tell me about personal development. But the value is in the curation, something that is highly undervalued. The host has a knack for picking something of value for me. My next step is choose a little 7 min job every day to do while listening ... maybe even sort out my garage ! Now THAT will be a triumph
Absolutely love Oprah and her teachings. Thank you so much for this episode!
from United States of America
Succinct and Info-packed!
Succinct and sweet... not to mention information-packed and very motivational episodes. Sometimes I don’t have an hour to listen and watch to motivational audio or videos, this podcast is all I need. Big thanks and more success, Clyde et al.!