10 Common Statements That Hamper Progress
You are as strong as the confessions and statements you say out loud or within you're the confines of your own mind. There are common statements which our human nature naturally gravitates towards at the expense of progress and tasks at hand. Sometimes these statements are said spontaneously, without even thinking or winking. When you say something to yourself long enough, you begin to believe it totally. When you believe something, your actions and decisions are directly affected and ultimately real character is formed. Your statements you say to yourself are sometimes called affirmations. When you affirm yourself positively, you empower yourself towards your goal. Suddenly what used to intimidate you becomes something you are capable and willing to tackle. Below are some of the common barricades to person progress. If you can control your mind and tongue such that statements of this nature and tone are not generated and marketed by your mouth, then your positive character traits will emerge much to the amazement of those around you.
1. "I am so fearful" - Fear of pain, fear of failure and all kinds of fear stop the flow of greatness in the lives of mankind. The Fear factor will stop you from the slightest appearance of risk. Every businessperson will tell you that there is an element of risk when you have to sell your car to finance an order in the business, when you sell your priced possessions such as property, to sink costs in a hyper inflationary economy, many will brand you as unreasonable. All major breakthroughs, discoveries / inventions came about because someone managed to see beyond the perceived pain or fear. A lot of things seem so fearful until you attempt. I remember when I was in Primary School, I would catch a glimpse of Secondary school mathematics books, I would see Pythagoras theorem, Quadratic equations etc. and I became fearful. I would think to myself, "what kind of people allow themselves to go through such pain in the mind?" When time came to do it, it was a marvel for me. All the fear was buried in the action. Replace "I am so fearful with "I have great courage, I take risks"
2. "I cannot do it" - (Underestimating own Capacity - sense of inability). It is interesting that sometimes other people see potential in you which you fail to recognize. When you think of others being more capable than you then you will always have to applaud the ones actually doing exploits while you promote yourself to a spectator. Of course, you can do it. There are many things I grew up thinking they were meant for people of a certain color, race or gender. I soon realized actually there can be female doctors and make nurses, there can be female drivers and mechanics, there can be rich black people. When a race shies away from taking responsibility and taking action, it will always have to grapple with limited thinking and under achievement. This statement can develop to "I don't want to do it" which is more of an attitude issue. One would be saying "I know I am capable but just for the sake of creating animosity, I choose not to do it". Such attitudes will not take you anywhere in life. If you can do it then please do so. When you choose to do it then put your energy, focus and effort into it. Halfhearted efforts are worse than one who decides against doing it completely. You must say "I can do all things, I am more than capable"
3. "It is impossible.Â I have never imagined it being done" - (Mental limiting block) - By saying this you will be admitting your incapability to carry creativity potential. Sometimes others refuse to implement what they didn't create which equates to sabotage of the creative power in others. Even though you didn't dream it yourself, you can help bring it to pass, "impossible" as it seems. I never imagined myself being a classical singer before until I spoke to someone who got me involved in an arts festival. "You can do it, this is possible", the festival organizer encouraged me. What was impossible in my mind changed when I was challenged to action and given the tools to do it. I am happy to say that this year, in Harare, Zimbabwe; I will be singing Bass 2 as part of a 100 voice choir doing the "impossible" choral production fusing German & Latin at Harare International Festival of the Arts, 27 April 2010. You must always say "All things are possible, I can do all things I set my mind to do"
4. "It is too much work for me" (Easily Intimidated) or "This is beyond my scope" (Sense of Inadequacy). Sometimes the tasks at hand seem very daunting and the volume itself can be discouraging to the extent that starting seems like you are pushing an elephant uphill. The easiest way to eat and finish a grown elephant is by taking a bite at a time. You can break your project into steps and levels and milestones. The smaller the tasks become, the more they become easier to accomplish. I joined Anglo American in 1997 where my responsibility rose from looking after 20 machines to administering 300 active users. Coupled with that was IT user training, network management, user support etc. I broke my task into achievable chunks, trained strategic people to become trainers in their business units, and equipped other junior support personnel to take charge of simpler user issues. I enjoyed my job. Daunting tasks became pieces of cake. I was energized and not intimidated by challenges. The more work you have the better; at least you have assurance that you are still required. Take your work with both hands as not having it is a more disastrous alternative. Your confession should be "I am energized by my work, I have capacity to achieve the unimaginable"
5. "It is expensive to achieve" - (Financial insecurity or excuse) - Finances should never be the hindrance why you cannot do what you are expected to do. Sometimes the word expensive is used as an excuse. It happens to be a very relative word where what you may call expensive, is affordable for me. Some of the most financial sound projects like mining require you to sink a few million dollars in capital investment before the mineral can come to the surface. I was shocked to realize that for the first 25 years of my previous employer's business, they never sold a single timber product as they were growing the first batch of trees. Now that may sound expensive and "such a waste" of money. For a long time after establishing my own business, I went for years without getting a salary for myself. I would prioritize that employees were paid; overheads were settled before I thought of rewarding myself or the shareholders. That is very "expensive" if you ask me. It affects your livelihood and lifestyle directly. Sacrifices are necessary though they seem expensive. Someone has to pay the price in cash or in kind. You must say this to yourself "I have all the financial resources I need for my projects, Money flows in the direction of my vision all the time"
6. "I doubt that I can do it" - (Skepticism issues). Doubt has crippled many to the point of not attempting. Doubt incapacitates you. It is in the mind and when you tell yourself enough times that you are in doubt then you will not even dare try because you do not "think" it will come out right. What is wrong with trying? The old adage goes "If at first you do not succeed, you try, try, try again". Do not doubt the power of thought. What you believe in your mind you can produce. It is not so much what you give lip service to. If it is not on the seedbed of your mind, it dissolves into the world of the unachievable. The culture I grew up under was so gripped with a lot of skepticism, suspicion and doubt. If anything good or bad happened, there was a great desire to "find out" how come it happened. There was always a need to consult powers on why things were happening the way they were happening. I had to overcome this kind of mentality which was pushing me towards disregarding the innate mental abilities I had. Now I do not entertain doubt. I know I can do all things. No limits, no boundaries. Tell yourself this daily "I am confident that I am high achiever, I start all that I plan and finish all that I start"
7. "I don't deserve this" - (Low Self-esteem issues). When you look at yourself and consider yourself inferior to your neighbor, you will think you do not deserve greatness while it is your birthright. You will watch in anticipation for the next rising star and not see that within yourself. Interestingly, you can even participate in encouraging others to be the best they can be while you remain stagnant or passively retrogressing. At one point I had an overflow of low self-esteem / self-worth. One thing I know beyond doubt is that I have is a beautiful wife. It never occurred to me in my life that such a beautiful person existed and they could one day agree to marry me. I used to look at my background, I had lived 70% of my life in our rural home, she had grown up in town all her life, I had attended a rural school where English accent, diction and enunciation were never an issue and here was someone who flowed in her English. "How on earth would such a privileged woman consider me of all people?" These were esteem issues I soon dealt with when I later came to terms with the reality that I deserved a wise, beautiful companion too like everyone else despite of background and not so glossy past. Replace "I don't deserve this" with "I am important, I deserve a good life and a good career. My destiny is secure"
8. "I don't have the time, I am never free". - (Pretending to be busy as avoidance mechanism). When there is a task to be achieved, you should create time; manage your time such that all there is to be done is done. Failure to prioritize issues will leave a lot of gaps in your life. By the time you want to do it, it may well be too late and irreversible. "Make hay while the sun is shining". There will come a time when even with you having the time, it will be too dark to see the hay. Hiding behind a finger and throwing excuses of this nature sometimes causes you to work at double the effort to curb a problem that you could have been nursing avoiding to confront it at its infancy. Sweeping problems under a carpet gives you temporary comfort and pleasure but it does not eliminate the problem. It simply incubates the problem till it matures. When you have nursed a problem or attitude long enough, you will almost react in a certain negative way spontaneously without noticing the negative effects on others. It becomes second nature. Create time for objective introspection. Create moments to deal with problems in your family, business or organization. Where you have people, it is almost definite that you will have to confront and resolve issues. Create time to turn differences in people to the advantage of the organization; Unity coupled with diversity. You should rather be saying this out loud "I create time to deal with issues in my life, I am available to deal with issues decisively and timeously"
9. "It is so hard to do it. I don't enjoy it" - (Always seeking the EASY options) - Mankind, like water that is flowing, always endeavors to seek the easy way out of any situation. This is more so for the Comfort zone seekers and dwellers. If it is not comfortable then it is shunned. Anything that considered to be hard is rather ignored with the hope that someone else would have to deal with it. Failure to take responsibility removes the blessing and joys that come in the harvest. Having been involved in farming all my life, I can attest that it is not easy to finally see the mealie-meal porridge on the plate. The production process is a hard and grueling experience especially where there is no mechanization but 100% manual labor. I would ask myself sometimes "Is it really worth it?" Having spent months on the fields, braving the scotching heat, waking up when everyone was enjoying their sleep to get the oxen ready to pull the plough, braving the danger of snake bites in the dark only to then hope and wait for the rains. We had seasons of drought where all out HARD work went to waste. Did that stop us from doing it again the following season? It didn't stop the farming passion and hope. It is because our lives depended on farming. Seeking comfort options is what any human is attracted to but it does not remove the responsibility to still deal with the "hard" elements in life. Your confession should be "I enjoy my work, I enjoy when I bring solutions to the table, I am a prolific problem solver"
10. "I have never done this before". (Tradition & culture issuesÂ refusal to change). As mankind we are usually drawn to the things that a familiar to us. We want to do things that we have done before or rehearsed on. Confidence levels build faster where one enters familiar territory. Change is an interesting phenomenon that 75% of the people do not naturally embrace. "This is how we have done it for the past 40 years" or "In my culture, we do it this way" are common sentiments passed by those who refuse the only constant that exists, that is change. When you refuse to change with the ever changing environment and technology, you become extinct in no time. You will not always do things you are familiar with. Consider the fact that even those things you are now familiar and confident in, you were once ignorant about them. There was a first time to them too. What removes the desire to try new ideas, new concepts and new values. One speaker mentioned that as the world evolves and changes, when you stop advancing technologically or otherwise, you are actually going back speedily. You need to replace "I have never done this before" with "I am always keen to try out new things, I adapt to change easily, I am always on the lookout for different approaches to make me work smarter and better. I am creative. I easily enter unknown territory with confidence"