Are Your Barriers Self-Imposed?


Courtesy is not an out-dated idea. How many times have you seen someone else fall at the last hurdle at an athletics meet or, worse still, at the Olympics? There is often only one reason why they fell - they mis-judged their rhythm and caught their trailing leg on the hurdle to inflict a self-imposed loss in the race.

Stop blaming others and start winning the race...

Many of the barriers in life are not imposed on us by other people or other situations. Most of the times we sabotage our own self. For some people, even if they were running the race by themselves, they would blow themselves up and still fail to finish the race!

There is a difference between a self-imposed barrier and one that is set externally. The barriers that we place there ourselves can significantly limit our ability to succeed. Yet we hold the power to remove the self-imposed barriers through our own action.

If you want to achieve more as a leader, I encourage you to limber up and stretch your muscles before you head to the starting blocks.

Here are five simple things that you could do to help you remove those barriers and complete the race unhindered.

1. Pick up the rhythm.

Like every athlete, there is a rhythm that you have to master to enable yourself to cover the track efficiently before you leap over the next hurdle.  Look for the natural rhythms within your business and make sure that you are working in harmony with them.  Identify the obstacles before they appear and take corrective action early on.

2. Evaluate your behaviour.

As John Maxwell says, "Charisma will get you in through the door, but character will keep you in the room".  Your behaviour determines your character and your character determines your success.

3. Check your words.

They say that the tongue is sharper than a two-edged sword.  So ask yourself, "What am I saying?"  Are your words positive and self-edifying or are you pouring out negative comments that become self-fulfilling prophesies?  Take the time to record your conversation and listen back in the cold, hard light of day and take stock of your words.

4. Open yourself to success.

After years of self-confessing talk that I was a loser, I finally took control of my destiny by deciding to input positive wisdom through the books that I read and making sure that my output was equally positive.  Start off by selecting a good self development book to read each month, and if you're unsure where to start, let me recommend "The Magic of Thinking Big" by David J. Schwartz.  In his book he says, "Attitudes are mirrors of the mind.  They reflect thinking... When our attitude is right, our abilities reach a maximum of effectiveness and good results will follow."

5. Work through them, one at a time.

The chances are that there will be more than one thing that causes you to stumble.  The reality is that you can probably only work on one at a time.  So, as the wise monk in the far east was known to say, "A journey of a thousand miles, starts with a single step!"  In a similar fashion, start working on one issue at a time.

So, remember to do these five things and enjoy the results!

Elias Kanaris


Elias Kanaris is an expert in lifting the lid on leadership by focussing on ethical business practice.

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