Your Personal Glass Ceiling: Break Through Your Self-Imposed Limits

by Karen Keller, Ph.D.

When was the last time you swallowed what someone told you? Specifically, when “they” said you weren’t good enough or capable or too old? Did you accept it as gospel?

Sadly, people buy into the belief that what society, their education or even their experience has taught them is the end-all. They begin to agree that maybe they can’t, shouldn’t or will never.

Every morning you wake up is another chance for you to do or to be something different. It may be expressing an original idea, developing a new approach, or simply creating another perspective.

You weren’t born knowing how to do everything you do now. You learned without the consideration of limitations. As you got older, the idea of being Superman or Wonder Woman escaped to the recesses of your mind.

Why? You started to tell yourself you needed to get “realistic.” What that meant for many people was it wasn’t real to believe you could get a better job or start a new career. It wasn’t real to think you could improve your lifestyle. It wasn’t real to want more and get it.

Your reality started to consist of being satisfied and being proud of where you settled. Accepting that the dream you had years ago was just a fleeting memory.

And there lies the problem. You stopped dreaming.

You rationalized that what you believed was possible wasn’t attainable. That’s where you began to justify your reality. You told yourself you didn’t want that or needed to do this. Your ideas of success changed. You forgot about the excitement in reaching beyond what you thought possible.

Many people stop trying. They settle. They’ve become their own glass ceiling.

But you don’t have to. You can continue to experience the exhilaration of reaching out, the pleasure of achieving and the thrill of chasing sought after dreams.

First, get out of your own way. That requires you to honestly assess your negative thoughts, self-defeating behaviors and lack of commitments. Write them down. Carry that list with you. Add to your list. Shine the light on everything that is pulling you down. Know that these limits are self-imposed, and you are the only one who can remove them.

Second, set the bar – HIGH! What happens with many people is not that their aim is too high and they miss it, but that their aim is too low and they reach it. That is when they stop trying.

Third, show up. Get in the game. Be present. Start participating in your life. Too many people sit on the sidelines and expect things to happen. Become aware of your thoughts and feelings. Recognize the influence you have on others. Decide what that influence will be. Become the architect of your life.

Fourth, expect it. ASK! Whatever “it” is for you, expect it with complete certainty. When you let go of self-imposed limits, you release worry and the need for perfection. Then you can see what God has in store for you.

Believe the unbelievable. See the invisible. Imagine the unimaginable. Shatter your glass ceiling. Your future depends on it.

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