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Identify What is Holding You Back

Think about this question. Who are you? What words do you use to describe yourself?

Is it.... Smart? Tech savvy? Unique? Victim? Successful? Athletic? A good reader? A born sales person? A constant failure?

Sit with this question if the words don’t immediately come to mind. When you have a chance, think through, and write down all of the phrases you would use to describe yourself or your life —good, bad, ugly, I don’t care.

When you’ve thought through these words and phrases, put on your scientific analyst hat, and look over them without any judgment. See whether they’re mostly positive or negative. Coming from a fixed mindset or a growth mindset? Victimhood or creator? Keep that analyst hat on so you can’t use this as a self-shaming exercise. Just observe the data. Whatever you find is ok because you’re already working to change and grow or you wouldn’t be listening in, right? Accept this as a part of your awareness.

Most of us, in the beginning of our development journeys, will have more negative phrases about ourselves than positive. It’s a part of the growing and changing process. And, it’s important to do this sort of exercise to help you analyze and understand what might be holding you back.

The purpose of this is to step out of the emotions...and review your list as if it were a packing list—no emotion.

Analyzing the items, which of these phrases feels the heaviest? The most stressful? Notice these phrases and focus on these first. These phrases are the most important to start with because they’re a big part of forming the identity that you’re operating from. And this is practically my slogan, but I’ll say it again, your identity is what you’re manifesting. Who and what you already are and embody is what you’re co-creating with the Universe.

Any health, success, happiness, or even failure..... you have to have the identity of something, before you get it. An example that I think a lot of people make relates to success and a healthy lifestyle. You can’t wait to become successful before creating time for healthy habits and routines. The habits and routines need to come before you’re successful, because that is what a successful person would be doing already.

It’s important to look back at your list, search for the heaviest phrase, and ask yourself, “how is this belief playing out in my life”?

Maybe the phrase you identify is “I’ll always be a failure. I can’t succeed”. If you believe you’re a failure, you’re manifesting more opportunities to make this true. More losses, more missed opportunities, more rejections, less “yeses” from the world.

Let’s say you’re looking at your list and see the word “unlucky”. Your “evidence” of this might be that you’re someone that never gets what they want, that has to struggle to succeed, that needs to experience more challenges before you feel like you’ve earned something, or that success only comes to those who work 80-hour weeks. If this is what you believe, this is what you receive. If you think you are unlucky, you’re creating opportunities for this evidence to show up. You manifest your beliefs and identity.

The Universe loves to validate the thoughts you already have—and it is completely neutral. If you think all of these negative things about yourself...that is what you get back. The Universe wants to prove your beliefs right. But this can be a beautiful thing for the positive beliefs you have about yourself!

You’re manifesting the identity and the evidence they stand upon—positive or negative.

Think about something you’re struggling with lately. Maybe it’s creating a website, starting a business, asking for a promotion, negotiating a raise, or even leaving a toxic relationship. Is there anything on your list of identity phrases that could explain why you’re stuck? Behind all of the external excuses.... what is holding you back? What belief do you hold keeps you there?

As a personal example, when I was a teenager, I started selling Cutco knives to help pay for school. When I first started, my sales were at about $2,000 the first 2 weeks. This wasn’t great compared to the national average. This was like 4 sales after 30 meetings. Definitely not a great closing ratio. I couldn’t figure out what the deal was. Everyone else seemed to crush it.

I wish I’d had these tools then, because I would have realized that I had this identity that I couldn’t sell. Sales were hard. You’re either born a person who had the confidence to sell, or you’re not.... and I did not have put “it”. And I took my first few no sales as proof of this. What I didn’t realize, was that I’d manifested those “no’s” because I believed I couldn’t sell. I was walking into appointments with clients this with super low energy. It was the energy of victimization and failure because I expected myself to not be good at this skill. So of course, my confidence was missing and my overall upbeat and positive energy that I usually exude was just not there. On the outside I was extroverted, knowledgeable, and nice, “oh here’s this set and that set, and oh this would look great...” but internally, I was panicking and filled with self-doubt. There was this lack of consistency between what was going on the inside versus who I was acting on the outside AND the client could feel it. They probably couldn’t tell you why, but they knew something was off with me so they chose not to trust in me, not to buy from me. I was incongruent. When your beliefs do not match the identity you’re trying to create, you become incongruent.

I was still stuck in this fixed mindset, this self-doubt and self-worth issue. If I wasn’t immediately good at it, then it wasn’t possible for me to learn the skill, right? I couldn’t possibly learn how to be a sales person! I laugh at my past self, but I’m proud of how far we’ve come. And, for the record, you can learn to do well at sales. This isn’t something most are born knowing.

My manager at the time asked me what I needed to do better, and I had no idea. I just knew that I wasn’t a sales person. Wasn’t born this way, can’t be fixed.

He came up with an idea and had another sales manager take me with him to one of his appointments. This guy was ranked nationally and only ever had 1 no sale in his career. I join him thinking, “this is it. I’m going to see how it’s done by someone born to sell”. Well guess what, when I joined him.... he had his second no sale ever.

At first, I was like “am I this unlucky that I’m the reason why he didn’t make a sale?” But I was much too logical for that so thankfully I quickly shut this thought down.

This allowed me to internalize a different message—a better one. Even the most successful versions of people experience “no’s”, or what I was previously experiencing as rejection and failure.

I thought I must be a failure because I didn’t have many sales. That this proved I wasn’t good at sales. But then, I see this very successful salesman ALSO experience a no. I was like “Wait, what?! Him too?!”, and that’s when the light went off for me. We ALL experience “nos” in life. I didn’t think he was a failure or a reject after his no, so why wasn’t I giving myself the same courtesy?

I left that appointment feeling a lot better. I went on the rest of that day to make a sale at every single appointment.... hitting $2,000 in one day.

I shit you not, two weeks later I was nationally ranked as a Cutco field sales manager with sales over $20,000.

All because I changed my identity from someone that wasn’t a sales person to someone that could learn sales. From someone that believed that “no” was a personal rejection, to someone who recognized that everyone does. It was a part of the learning process. My lack of success wasn’t because of this lack of an innate skill as a sales person. It was my limitations. I wasn’t born with these limitations; I’d put them on myself over time. I had to strip myself of that belief to become successful.

And when I took on this new belief that everyone can experience “no’s”, but that everyone could also experience “yes’s”, that’s when I decided to be someone who got more “yes’s”. I let go of the identity that I just wasn’t born good enough, and stepped into a growth identity. That anyone can become good enough. I slipped off my limitation.

I share this with you because there is always a lesson to be learned in something that has not gone your way. And you can usually track down what keeps you stuck in your mindset and the identity you have.

If you feel like you’re not where you want to be with something. Stop and think about what is REALLY holding you back, internally. For me? It was a belief that I wasn’t born to do this. Or, I can’t possibly learn to be good at something that doesn’t come naturally. Ever had that thought?

When people try to explain why they’re stuck or haven’t made any progress, I usually hear a lot of “well I don’t have this technology, or I need this course or I need this certification first, or I need to prove myself with XYZ before I can....”

And you know what happens when these excuses go away after you have whatever it was you thought you were missing? New ones will pop up. Because it’s not about these excuses, it’s about the beliefs underneath them.

These are all symptoms of the identity that is holding you back. Tune into that. What are these thoughts telling you?

This is why working on your beliefs and identity is so fucking important to manifestation. You have to believe to receive.

So, ask yourself, what is REALLY holding you back?

Start there and see what comes up. And, let me know what you uncover. I love it when y’all DM me on IG or post your revelations in the FB group. Let me know if you got anything from this and if so, what that was.

Have a great rest of your week and I will catch y’all next Monday!

- Bre


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