Living an amazing and successful life will mean something different for each of us. There is one common theme that many of us would love to have in our life, and it can best be described in one word: Freedom.
We long to live life on our terms and wake up each day doing the things that are important to the kind of life we want to live.
For 12 years, I delivered bread in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I was 170 pounds overweight, and our family was $180,000 in debt. I could never dream of a successful life because my self-limiting beliefs convinced me my life would never be more than what it was. I was stuck and woke up every day hating life.
In 2011, everything came crashing down on my head at the same time. At my lowest point, I was crying on the living room floor of a friend’s house. After two days of feeling sorry for myself, I made a decision. I realized that if something was going to change in my life, I had to be the one to change it.
When I made the decision to change, there were five mindset traps that tried to keep me from the life I wanted to live. These traps are common and keep too many dreamers from living a successful life.
Here are the 5 mindset traps that will halt your motivation and success:
1. “I’m not strong enough”
You may not be as strong as some other successful person you know, but you don’t have to be. You have the strength inside of you waiting to break free. Strength comes when you clearly identify your “why”—the reason you’re chasing a dream. When you can look past your circumstances and focus on your goal—you become stronger.
2. “I’ve failed in the past”
If you trace many of the people we consider heroes: Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, Bill Gates, and so on, you’ll see a story of overcoming failure. Everyone experiences failure, but not everyone handles it the same way. Don’t let previous failure keep you from future success. You can and will overcome failure if you choose to.
3. “It’s too hard”
It would be easier if life worked out like the movies, but it doesn’t. Life is hard and messy. Circumstances never work out as planned. Making big changes and chasing dreams is hard work. It takes hustle, determination and overcoming self-limiting beliefs. The hard work will help you appreciate the dream once you make it a reality.
4. “People won’t understand”
Change is scary. It scares those around you because all of us are afraid to move outside of our comfort zone. We have been conditioned to stay within a certain path for most of our life, so when we deviate, people around us try to convince us to conform. They may mean well, but they don’t have to walk a mile in your shoes. This is your life, and you have to live it for YOU.
5. “I have more time”
Life is short. Each of us can look back on a memory that felt like it was just yesterday but was actually years ago. Life can pass us by quickly. Assuming you will have more time is a slippery slope. All we have is today, and we should live each day as if it were the last.
“Don’t aim for success if you want it; just do what you love and believe in, and it will come naturally.” – David Frost
It took three years, but I lost the 170 pounds, I quit a job I hated for 12 years, I self-published two books that have sold over 100,000 copies. The book sales allowed us to pay off all of the $180,000 in debt. The cherry on the cake was moving our family from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to our dream destination of Maui, Hawaii. We have been here for 15 months now.
I’m not different. I didn’t win the lottery or get any lucky breaks. It took three years of hustle and hard work, but I made my dreams a reality. I was a bread guy from Wisconsin who beat his self-limiting beliefs. You can, too. You can live whatever a successful life means to you if you take action. You will fail, you will want to give up, but if you can rise above what you feel at that moment, you can achieve success.
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