So, what are your limiting patterns??

You are only as good as your last success. We all want to bask in our glories, and a good pat on the shoulder does wonders for our motivation. But how do we ensure we leave our last success behind and concentrate on the next one? Improvement and growing is a process of learning, implementing, growing, learning and repeating. It is about constantly challenging yourself and once you set the bar at a certain level, to exceed that. Growing means never settling; it means always looking for ways to improve something or to improve you.

We may have the best intentions to change and to learn from mistakes and replace it with something better. But so often we are short-changed by the same limiting patterns of behaviour, and before we know it, we are stuck. We all know the sad phenomenon of someone unable to cut loose from reminiscing over a past success. And most of us know someone not able to move forward (often ourselves?). Both stuck.

As with a lot of things in life, awareness is the first key to change it. Once we realise we are stuck we often pride ourselves on having nailed the issue. Identifying the issue might feel like a breakthrough, but sadly, won’t get us anywhere unless we break the limiting patterns. It is never the issue that causes us to stay stuck. It is always the pattern. The brain is wired to repeat the same limiting patterns as that is the familiar (and safe) way for it; geared for survival and not necessarily for growth. It is only when you realise your limiting pattern of behaviour that you can do something about it.

There are four main patterns (and sometimes a combination) to be aware of. See if any of these sound familiar to you (warning: we are often masters in identifying these in others, but in ourselves…different story!)…

Recognise 4 limiting patterns

Carrying the issue with you

Have you become so attached to your issue that you can’t seem to drop it? Some people constantly carry the problem they face on their back. One gets the sense that they get some satisfaction out of it. It is rarely about the issue, it is the habit of constantly carrying it. In a way we become addicted to our issues, sometimes even carrying it with pride. Sounds familiar?

Constantly checking on the issue

We drop the issue, but we constantly check on it. This pattern is like someone putting a baby down to sleep and then lifting the covers so often to check if it is still asleep, that soon it wakes up. Scratching until it itches, just to make 1000% sure. Again, it is not the baby (issue) that is awake, but the person waking it with their pattern. This person really does not have any intention to drop the issue.

When this (happens)…then I’ll…

We have probably all been guilty of this pattern at some point or another. Constantly holding out for something else, getting ready, waiting, never doing. We actually get to believe ourselves when we say that, but who are we fooling? Only ourselves!

Not being totally committed

Talk is cheap but if in your heart of hearts you are not totally committed and prepared to break the pattern, you won’t. You can not have one foot in, and one foot out. This pattern is actually easier to break than one would think – sometimes just asking yourself whether you are committed will already help you make a shift.

So now what? How to break it?

Remember I said once we realise the limiting pattern we can do something about it. So stop doing it! Don’t do less of it; stop totally, and turn around.  Notice it constantly and break its neck. Get help if you need to, a coach or a confidante, but there is no going halfway – the only way out of a pattern is to break it!


About the author:

Celeste Du Toit is a transformational Life Coach and NLP practitioner. She is based in South Africa, but connects with clients across the globe via Skype. She asks challenging, visionary questions to help you to identify and clear habits, beliefs and blockages that keep us stuck.

Her tailored program addresses 9 sustainable practices and tools so you can continue empowering yourself. She works individually or with groups, runs regular workshops and delivers inspirational speaking engagements.

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