Whatever it is that you are trying to achieve in life, it can be extremely frustrating when you encounter roadblocks to accomplishing your goals and obtaining success. Sometimes, these roadblocks are due to circumstances beyond your control. However, in many cases, the direct or indirect cause of failure comes from within. Negative, fearful thoughts and thoughts that reflect a lack of confidence can definitely prevent your success. The good news is that if you can recognize them, you become empowered.
Here are 7 poisonous thoughts that interfere with your success, and some ways that you can reshape them.
1. My Idea Might Get Rejected or Ridiculed
You have a great idea. Maybe it’s a concept that you can use to launch the startup you’ve always dreamed of. Maybe it’s the money saving idea that will get you noticed by your department head. Then, you start to have doubts. Your idea goes against the grain. You are new to the department and haven’t established any relationships yet. You’ve never submitted a proposal before, and from what you’ve seen, your boss has little patience. Whatever the reasons are, you are hesitant to share your idea, even though it could greatly benefit you and other people.
Reshaping Your Thoughts: Imagine being the person who listens to your proposal. Do you really think that rejection and ridicule is going to be the reaction? Of course not! There is no guarantee that your idea will be accepted or used. On the other hand, the likelihood that you will face negative consequences is pretty much nil. Stop overthinking things!
2. I Don’t Have The Experience For That
Most people are taught from childhood on to respect experience. After all, how many advertisements do you read that tout the number of years a company has been in business? How many times were you told as a child that you should listen to people with more experience?
Based on all of this, it is easy to think that you should wait your turn until you have an acceptable amount of experience, or that you are not qualified to take on a position that requires leadership skills. As a result, you wait.
Reshaping Your Thoughts: Experience is a good thing, but it isn’t the all end all. There are many people who have accomplished great things in spite of having limited experience. There are also people who have worked for years who have contributed very little, and who have stagnated. What does this all mean? Don’t define yourself by your experiences. Define yourself on your abilities and individuality.
3. It’s Too Risky
You have a plan for success, but you also have a problem. Chances are, pursuing that plan means taking risk. You may be risking your career, your finances, or even your own self-esteem. The result is that you do nothing. There is simply too much at stake. If you tell people that you are considering taking a risk, you probably receive more blowback than support.
Reshaping Your Thoughts: Read the autobiography of nearly any successful person. They took risks. Then, those risks paid off. Risk is not a negative thing. It is a motivator that you can use to help you to achieve great things. Your willingness to take risk is also a great sign of your faith in something. Hopefully that something is yourself. If you can get past your fear of risk and grasp that faith, you will go far.
4. I’m Not Good Enough
Having doubt in your abilities is one of the most common thoughts that can interfere with your success. Doubts about your adequacy are quite common, and can actually be a sign of intelligence. Did you know that such types of thoughts reflect more intelligence than persistent thoughts of confidence? It’s true! Overconfidence is often a reflection of not considering all of the possibilities and not thinking things through.
Reshaping Your Thoughts: Remember this. You are good enough! Not only are you good enough, you are so great that you are concerned about your shortcomings and the impact of your thoughts and actions on others. Isn’t that something that every successful person should aspire to? If you have thoughts of self-doubts, try meditation, or using visualization to remember your capabilities and successes. It may even help to use journaling to get these feelings that can be so destructive on your path to success
5. I Will Probably Fail
Sometimes, your thoughts aren’t simply thoughts of self-doubt. Instead, they reflect more fearful thoughts. This is when you begin to tell yourself that failure isn’t just possible, but that it is probable. In many cases, this doesn’t mean that you are going to fail. It simply means that you are afraid of failure, and the stigma that comes along with it. Who can blame you? Failure can come with some pretty serious consequences.
Reshaping Your Thoughts: If you are having thoughts about failure, do not beat yourself up over them. They are perfectly rational thoughts. After all, if you do anything to take a risk in order to obtain success, you risk failure. Not only that but the greatest people in the world often fail before they find the perfect combination of hard work and fortune. Instead of ruminating on the concept of failure, try to focus on the concept of learning new things from your mistakes.
6. People Won’t Support Me
You will not make everybody happy as you try to become a successful person. Some people will see you as being naive. Others will fear that you are taking too many risks. Some people will simply not understand, or they will not want to lend their support to your efforts to become more successful because you aren’t taking the well-traveled path.
Reshaping Your Thoughts: People may be more supportive than you realize. Yes, you may have to deal with skepticism, but more often than not, a skeptic can be convinced when they see a bit of progress. Likewise, people who seem to be unsupportive in the first place, will often become your fiercest advocate once they are convinced. Don’t let lack of support make you give up. Work hard to earn that support from the people who matter!
7. It’s Too Late to Pursue My Dreams
There is no timeline for dreams, and there is no timeline for success. Unfortunately, if you are trying to accomplish something there is no limit to people who have no qualms in telling you that you are foolish to pursue your dreams at such a late date. They may even tell you to act your age.
Reshaping Your Thoughts: It is never too late to do anything. If you have a dream that you want to pursue, go for it. You certainly shouldn’t let anybody else’s opinions about that interfere with you. If you are the one who is confronting your own doubts, think about this. College degrees can take 5 years to achieve. It can take ten years to get a business going. That’s a lot of years, but if you don’t pursue your goals, that just means that you are going to be just as old without a college degree or your own business.
It is natural to have doubts, but do not let doubt ruin your future. Take a chance and eventually you will win. Maybe you have some more poisonous thoughts to share with us?