Is there something you’d like to be creating for your life right now? Are you feeling anxious or incapable when you should be acting boldly and attacking your goals? What is causing these feelings of inadequacy? What is holding you back?

Welcome to another episode of The Art of Extraordinary Confidence! Today, we’re going to be discussing the top two layers of obstacles that keep us from going after what we really want in life. First, however, if you’ve been enjoying these posts and would like to get more involved, check out my website, SocialConfidenceCenter.com, where you can find countless resources to help guide you to success, including my free eBook, Five Steps to Unleash Your Inner Confidence. It’s a great place to go if you’re looking for some support, guidance, and materials to supplement your online learning.

So . . . what is really holding us back? It all boils down to two main culprits: excuses and stories.

Excuses – We all know what excuses are. They’re the ideas we adopt to allow ourselves to fail gracefully:

          No one will let me do it;

        The timing isn’t right;

          There just aren’t any good men/women out there;

          It’s too hard;

          The economy is in shambles.

Excuses allow us to feel safe because they’re letting people know that our potential failure isn’t our fault before the failure even happens.

There’s one big problem with that: if you’re making excuses, you’re already assuming that failure is going to occur.

So, how are you setting yourself up for failure? What are the excuses you’ve been telling yourself and others, and how are they keeping you from getting the results you want?

Stories – If excuses are about convincing other people that you’re not at fault for your failure, your internal stories are all about convincing yourself that you’re not at fault:

          I’m not good enough or smart enough;

          I don’t have the right personality;

          I don’t have the right connections to make this work;

          I don’t have the training and discipline;

          There are too many problems from my past.

Internal stories are the ideas we’ve created about ourselves that limit us and keep us in a safe box of stagnation. Not only are they almost always untrue, but they’re also simply not serving you.

Sadly, a person could spend his or her whole life festering between excuses and internal stories . . . and many people do.

These two forces are designed to stop you from facing the one thing that is truly holding you back: fear.

Without your excuses and internal stories, you’d have nothing holding you back, and you might be forced to actually take risks. That’s scary enough, but then those risks might lead to failures. Or worse: successes.

There’s nothing quite so terrifying as having something wonderful to lose. If you don’t tell yourself that you’re unworthy or unlovable, then you might, for example, go after the person of your dreams; you might win his or her love; then you have to face the possibility that it might not work out. In the face of that choice, you might rather just stick with your excuses and stories.

The naked truth is that it’s scary to put yourself out there.

Every single time you take bold action, you face the possibility of rejection . . . and that means that every single time you take bold action, you face fear. Sure, that can be overwhelming at first, but that fear diminishes over time. Sometimes it diminishes in the blink of an eye.

Fact: fear is just a feeling—it’s an energy. You can learn to work with your fear; you can learn to move through your fear; you can learn to relax around it, resolve it, and release it altogether.

Fear doesn’t have the power to stop you unless you let it control your psyche with ridiculous stories and excuses. We may tend to think of fear as this tangible, solid wall that stands between us and our dreams . . . but in reality it’s no more than a vapor. Your fear is a harmless fog that you simply have to walk through to access your greatest desires.

You can achieve everything you want in life—you just have to let go of your fear and your addiction to those old stories you’ve been telling yourself your whole life.

Now, I realize that for many of you, that might seem to be easier said than done . . . and that’s ok!

Almost everyone who is working toward greater confidence needs guidance and support through that journey. As mentioned above, I offer several resources for personal growth on my website, SocialConfidenceCenter.com. If fear and letting go of internal stories is of particular interest to you at this point in your development, though, then you should check out my book, The Art of Extraordinary Confidence. It’s a fantastic source for those who are focused on inner growth, and it lays out the process of moving through fear in great detail (and in a way that will inspire you to take action, starting NOW).

The Art of Extraordinary Confidence is available on Audible and Amazon, but if you’re looking for more personal guidance, then you can also head on over to SocialConfidenceCenter.com to join one of my masterminds or sign up for a live event.

In the meantime, please share your comments and questions below. What excuses have you been making for yourself? What internal stories are defining your life and holding you back? What goals would you pursue if you had no fear? I love connecting with you through these posts and inspiring further talks, so continue to connect with me and with each other so that we can all grow together.

Until we speak again, may you have the courage to be who you are and to know on a deep level that you’re awesome.

 

Dr. Aziz
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