12 May 17:00 by Alejandro Rodriguez Garcia


So, you’ve finally left the military (or you’re about to). You’ve decided that you want your life to be all about flexibility, fun and fulfillment. You’re literally free to do whatever you want……so why do so many people going through resettlement feel so confused, overwhelmed or limited by the options?

Last time I mentioned about the Big Four Blocks and the fact that they’ve been impacting your life without you even knowing it. In everyday terms, the Big Four Blocks are effectively 4 categories of thoughts, beliefs and interpretations that get in the way of us making successful changes in our lives. Today we focus on the first of these blocks, known as Limiting Beliefs.

At iPEC these are defined as:

A belief you accept about life, about your world or the people in it that limits you in some way.”

Generally, limiting beliefs forge and impact the lens you have created about the outside world. They are most commonly the phrases, clichés or paradigmswe’ve been conditioned to believe by our family, religious community, school, friends or the media, that somehow limit us.

Here are some typical examples:

  • (My father said) that you have to be ruthless in business to make any money;
  • (My mate says) that there are no jobs in the North East;
  • (The papers say) that small businesses have a 90% chance of failing in this economy.

The thing is, the beliefs themselves are harmless until they limit us in our own lives. For now, let’s take an example that I come across more often than most, with a limiting belief highlighted for you:

You’re about to leave your job. 

You’re keen to do something flexible, fun, fulfilling and financially rewarding. 

You’re interested in a career as a professional coach because people often come to you for advice and you seem to have a positive impact on them.

You’ve heard from friends/family that you’d be crazy to become self-employed in this economy as they’ve heard it’s impossible to make a decent living as a coach.

Naturally, you’d be afraid invest in a professional coaching qualification since you believe that there’s a high risk that you won’t be able to make ends meet.

And all of a sudden, you’re stuck!

Until now that is.

All this time you have been absorbing limiting beliefs unconsciously and as such they’ve acted as an invisible internal braking system.But with a heightened level of awareness you can see a limiting belief for what it is – HEAR SAY. By recognising it for what it truly is, you then have the choice to assess it, determine its relevance to you, decide how well it works for you and opt whether to let it go.

The good news is that challenging limiting beliefs is reassuringly straightforward. The key is simply to find examples and evidence that the limiting belief is NOT universally true.

So let’s try it with some typical coaching questions and you can see just how easy it is to tackle limiting beliefs:

You’ve heard from friends/family that there’s no money in coaching.

  • How true is that belief really?

By doing a little research you would soon discover that there are thousands of successful professional coaches out there, many of them earning six and seven figure incomes (personally, I know plenty!). Coaching can also be combined with speaking, training, writing, consulting and doing assessments, all of which complement each other and offer additional sources of income.

  • Where did you get that belief from?

How reliable and knowledgeable is the source of the belief? How much do your friends and family really know about the industry? Where did they get the information from? What was the agenda behind them saying it? How relevant is that to you with your experience and network?

  • How is having that belief really impacting you/your happiness?

What’s it costing you to believe what you’ve heard?: A new and more fulfilling career path; the chance to spend more time with your family; an opportunity for self-discovery; the chance to meet new and like-minded people; a fun experience?

  • How would things be different if you could let that belief go?

What would you be motivated to do differently? What possibilities would it open up? What other options are out there?

Bringing it back to our aspiring coach example, those willing to explore the opportunity soon discover that a professional coach training qualification can be completed flexibly, meaning that they have the opportunity to learn new skills, meet like-minded people, grow, develop personally and build a successful business whilst in a full time, full paying job.

So you see, the danger of unconsciously believing a limiting belief is that you might not even realise that there’s a solution out there and available to you.

Stay tuned for the next post on Interpretationsthe second of the Big Four Blocks.