There’s never one answer that fits this question, as you are an individual so is what limits you, you may find the answer you get isn’t the same for someone else, however you can pre-empt certain things which can stop you in making the changes you want.
I need to start by talking about the mind and body to give some groundwork for this: your mind and body get used to things even if they’re negative and don’t do you any favours. For example, if you eat a lot of junk food, you’ll find when trying to eat healthily your body will resist the food and express hunger to you and give you cravings for junk food, this is because your body is used to junk food. Your mind works in the same way, if you’re always negative and then try and be positive overnight, you’ll find it very difficult at the start, as your mind is used to being negative, it will just keep giving you negative thoughts. This doesn’t mean you can’t implement changes, what it means is that you need to be able to give yourself the time to readjust to the change.
It’s rare for someone to implement a change overnight and for that change to stick. Your mind and body not being used to the change may last a couple of weeks but eventually, it will revert back to what it knows.
Anything, which you’ve learnt since you were a child has taken time, this doesn’t change when you’re an adult. So give yourself time to implement changes slowly over a period of time, increase the change as time progresses. Example – try being positive once a day for a week, then increase this to two positive thoughts per day for a week, then the following week increase this to three positive thoughts and so forth. If you think back to any change you’ve implemented, you’ll most likely see that it took time: this could even be learning about a new role at work.
Fear is a natural emotion which everyone experiences at some point, there’s 2 forms of this: biochemical which is universal and everyone has this and emotional fear response which is very different person to person. The purpose of fear is to warn you of danger, whether this is physical, emotional or even a thought you’re had which triggered this.
When your thoughts are the trigger to fears, you’ll find these thought being far from reality (unless this is about trauma which has or is currently happening). When you believe these thoughts to be true, it will make you feel fearful of what you believe is about to happen, even if it’s irrational. If your fear is based on irrational thoughts and you’re aware it’s irrational thoughts – stop believing your thoughts. These thoughts aren’t doing you any favours and if you’re unable to find any evidence to back up the thoughts (which proves the thought is true), don’t believe them, e.g. A thought tells you that you didn’t lock the front door when you left your home, think back to when you left. Did you have your keys in your hand? (walk yourself through the memory) Do you remember closing the door? Did you put the key in the lock and turn it? If the answer is yes to all, your thought is irrational and you know you locked the door and you’ve talked yourself through the different steps you took: proving your thought wrong – don’t listen to this thought.
Fear can also work in a way where you can be fearful of succeeding – this is known as fear of the unknown. This fear ties in with the mind working on a familiarity basis. When you’re used to a situation even if it’s negative, it to some degree is comfortable because you know what to expect and how everything works. When it comes to implementing changes which you’re not used too, you may feel a bit anxious, scared or even worried about implementing them because you’re not used to the new change and may find that you end up keeping yourself where you are. This fear can be restricting you from implementing that changes you need to, in order to succeed – the best way to work around this, is to acknowledge your fear and slowly start implementing changes. When you see the results of your changes, ask yourself whether it’s as scary as you thought, if the answer is no, start to challenge your thoughts on what they’re telling you. We have hundreds of thoughts a day, not all of them are true but when it comes to yourself – you’ll believe the negative ones more than the positive. Ask yourself why you do this.
You stop making changes
It’s great that you’re implementing changes, it’s motivational and encourages you to do more, however, once the changes have achieved the results you want, it can be easy to assume you don’t need to continue with the changes. When you stop implementing the changes, your results will cease to exist. The only way to maintain the results you want is to maintain the changes. You’ve done great by starting to make changes, just ensure you continue to maintain them as time goes on. This is like when people start diets and they’ll lose weight, feel great and then because they’ve achieved their goal they’ll stop the diet, which results in them putting the weight back on. Keep maintaining your changes!
Having a negative mindset can easily stop you from making changes, or even if you manage to implement them because you do so half-heartedly, your mind can stop you from achieving the results you want. Telling yourself, ‘it won’t work’ ‘I can’t see it happening’ or expecting changes to just happen by themselves, will most likely result in you not trying to implement changes because you don’t believe they will result in anything positive or maybe you do try but again because you don’t believe in it, you don’t put your all into it – not the same way you would if you actually believed it. Try not to listen to everything your mind tells you – it’s easy to believe the negative thoughts when it comes to yourself but you wouldn’t be so hard on someone else – ask yourself why.