Using limitations for good and not evil…

Beliefs, the wiring in our brain that guides us to act and behave in response to what’s going on around us, can often stop us from moving forward and achieving goals. This is what we call limiting beliefs and we’ve spoken a lot about this in the past both on here and with our clients regularly. A limiting belief can be detrimental to achieving our goals and moving forward, so they are something we get very serious about.

What if limitations, on the other hand, could help us be more creative and open our mind to other options? How could we use these limitations to help not only change our limiting beliefs but also achieve great things with what we have right now?

What if you could use your current limitations to drive solutions?

Let’s think about constraints

Limitations, or constraints, often show their face as deadlines. Think of a deadline for a project, a meeting presentation, a report being due etc. These are all constraints on our energy and time. Hell, work in itself is a constraint – we are required to be somewhere, do something during a certain time over a certain number of days to deliver certain tasks, activities and projects.

However, without these “constraints”, would you still produce what was required of you when it was needed? Some may say absolutely, most though would probably find something else to procrastinate on until the time felt “right” and they put in the effort. With no limitation to what we need to produce, most often we will find other things to fill our time with. For instance, a task that may only take 30mins to complete and a four hour window to complete it will more than likely take us four and a half hours due to the simple fact there is no real drive for us to complete it.

High performers have a sustainable schedule and stick to it like glue. The average person waits until they feel motivated to do something.

“But constraints are not the enemy. Every artist has a limited set of tools to work with. Every athlete has a limited set of skills to train with. Every entrepreneur has a limited amount of resources to build with. Once you know your constraints, you can start figuring out how to work with them.” – James Clear

Limiting our options challenges us to be more creative with what we have. What can you do about it with what you have right now? Stop thinking, “if I had more money I could…”, or “if I had more time, I could…”;

If I wasn’t so busy

If I didn’t have to…

If I looked like this…

If I was fitter, stronger, more experienced, more focused, more intelligent etc.

If I, If I, If I is just a waste of energy on the ifs, buts and maybes. Focus on what you have right now and what you can do with it. Become more creative with how to overcome your challenges.

The reality is:

You don’t have more money right now, so what can you do with what you have?

You’re not as fit as you could be right now, so what can you do right now to change that?

You’re not as well read on a certain topic or task right now, so what can you do right now to change that?

You’re not happy with where a project/task/team is on a certain work item, so what can you do right now to change that?

Use your current limitations to challenge and spark your creativity. It really does come back to what are you trying to achieve and how can you start moving closer to that right now? Not what would you do if things were different, but how do I change things so they are different?

After all, as the famous Lao Tzu quote says, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”