by Pete Ferguson
Ten-year-old David lay in a hospital bed awaiting a surgery to remove his gallbladder. Nervous that the procedure might not go well, he asked his mom, Susan, if he would be allowed into heaven.
Very worried as well, my friend Susan assured her son he would be fine, but asked why he didn’t think he would go to heaven. He replied that since he chewed with his mouth open, which is bad, and bad people do not go to heaven, he didn’t think he would be good enough to go.
Susan tried not to laugh, but realized that she had talked to David many times about not chewing with his mouth open and that it was bad manners. She then discussed with him the varying degrees of good and bad and assured him he was in good standing and had nothing to fear.
David had made a very logical connection for his ten-year-old perspective and wisdom – chewing with your mouth open is bad, and bad people do not go to heaven. We call this a disempowering or limiting belief. Because of the false belief, actions and emotions are altered from reality.
One disempowering belief I had for many years is that my back and knees were not in good shape to run because of the many years I spent scraping wood floors and carrying heavy equipment during summers at college. When I was in my mid 20s, I tried to start running and pinched a nerve which escalated into two years of pain and very limited movement, weight gain, and more and more limiting beliefs.
Then I met Troy Marsh – I call him the “Body Whisperer.” Troy is a licensed physical therapist who can almost diagnose me 100% just by the way I walk into his gym. About the same time I met another great coach, Marianne Heder, who runs a fitness bootcamp. She kicked my butt into gear and taught me about nutrition, flexibility, and exercise. Troy taught me how to retrain muscles (hint, just do everything the opposite of what you normally do in most cases), stretch, and breakdown scarring.
Two years later, my wife are I were able to run three miles together and I had lost 30 pounds.
Coaches are excellent at helping us see what we do not see and disprove our limiting beliefs. Different than a therapist who walks us through our past, coaches help us plan a future, develop the tools for us to be self reliant, and push us beyond our limits.
What’s holding you back?
Learn: Uncover a disempowering belief. Try to uncover what started it, then prove it wrong through research by finding someone who overcame this falsehood.
Act: Get a paid coach or sign up a friend or family member as an accountability coach. Schedule regular check ins and write a goal with a time limit. This blog is the result of me committing to 50 attendees of Dan Miller’s Coaching With Excellence that I would do it. And they have held me accountable and cheered me along. It’s been great!
Share: Talk about your goal to anyone who will listen. This will further commit you to accomplishing it and will also connect you to resources you didn’t know existed!
Good luck, and I look forward to seeing you conquer your fears!
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