Who doesn’t want more success in life? If you say you don’t, we know you’re lying. But achieving the success you want is tough. That’s because too often, find ourselves held back by our own disabling thoughts and beliefs. We erect our own barriers to success. As a person who has triumphed over many adversities to become one of the world’s first women martial arts grandmasters, I know that the first step to getting what we want is to take charge of our thinking.
I am sure that most of us have heard that nothing succeeds like success? That is so. Every positive feeling expands and creates more positive feelings. When we capture this momentum, here is no stopping us on the road to success.
Over time, I have learned that there are five key principles to overcoming the mental barriers to success. When we put the following principles into practice, we pave the way to consciously creating a new and fulfilling life.
5 Ways To Smash Mental Barriers To Success
1. IDENTIFY AND CONQUER WEAKNESS
I believe that our strengths and our weaknesses are equally important to us. There is no shame in having a weakness. It’s also important to realize that what we sometimes perceive as a weakness is really a fear to try something, because others have convinced us that we are not good at it. As we identify and confront a weakness, we gain an increment of power because we are taking the first step to rise above it but we can’t do so if we won’t admit to having it in the first place.
Life, in fact, is designed to challenge us by bringing up those weaknesses so that we can look them in the eye and choose to confront and overcome them.
2. LEARN FROM MISTAKES
When we make a mistake, we believe that the more quickly we can get it out of sight and move on, the better. What we don’t realize is that mistakes are part of a natural feedback system when we are learning a task or accomplishing a goal. What’s the worst thing that will happen if we make a mistake? We will have to abandon that course of action and take another. We will need to be creative. We will need to expend energy in thinking, evaluating, and planning. We may also need to resist emotions such as despair, futility, rejection, and fear.
Making mistakes can be a great excuse for giving up, for deciding that maybe our goal isn’t so important after all. But we should not give in. We must expect more of ourselves and our lives.
3. TAKE CHARGE OF GOALS
We need to take positive action to reach our goals. We may have innate talent to paint or draw, but we need to learn how to use the right tools and techniques to hone our skills so that we can express our talent. It takes action to achieve this. We can’t just wait for things to come to us. We have to invest our time and energy in the change we want to make. We also have to be realistic when we are working toward any goal. When we want to buy a car, we plan for it. We know how much money we can save each month, which determines what kind of car we can afford. The same realism and analysis should apply to all our goals.
Anyone who has achieved a goal they have long held in mind will say that it required consistency, mental discipline, and dedication.
4. BE SPECIFIC, BE DETERMINED, BE PURPOSEFUL
When we take a vacation, we plan exactly where we want to go, where we will stay, and how we will get there, and we proceed to make all the proper arrangements. We are being specific, aren’t we? The even greater goals in our lives deserve as much care and focus. We need to know the details about the goals we want to reach and the steps we’ll need to take to get there. We must be specific and then focus our will and unflinching determination behind our purpose. When we’re looking for a new job or considering another major step in our lives, we need the same determination. All too often, we lose determination after a few rejections. When we get discouraged, we start to make all sorts of excuses. But we can’t allow that to happen.
Determination is born out of a hunger and passion in our lives. We’ve got to be hungry to achieve our dreams and goals. We can’t just brag about what we want and then give up on it. That’s treating our dreams and goals like a hobby. A real goal is a life-and-death matter.
5. HAVE A POSITIVE MENTAL ATTITUDE
If we compare our thoughts to seeds, our emotional environment is the soil in which they are planted. Our positive seeds must be sown in positive soil to grow and flourish. Together, our positive thoughts and feelings create a positive mental attitude. This is essential if we are going to break through to awesome in our lives. Sometimes we may be thinking: theoretically, that’s all encouraging words, but right now, I feel depressed or lonely or afraid or overwhelmed. What do I do right now?
There are two steps we can take immediately. The first step is that when we feel negative, we must acknowledge that we feel negative. That may seem simplistic, but it’s surprising how often we refuse to acknowledge that we’re feeling angry or depressed. The second step for moving beyond that feeling is to let it flow away from us like water moving down a riverbed. We do not allow it to reside in our consciousness for any amount of time and do not allow it to become permanent. We release the negative emotion as soon as it comes.
Tae Yun Kim, author of SEVEN STEPS TO INNER POWER, is a martial arts great grandmaster, author, motivational speaker, and entrepreneur. As head coach, she led the first-ever U.S. womenʼs Tae Kwon Do team to a gold medal at the Pre-World Games in Seoul, helping pave the way for women to compete in Olympic martial arts. She is also the founder of Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions, a leading high-tech Silicon Valley company.