7 Barriers We Create for Ourselves. Stop It Already!

7 Apples on a Saturday Night

Life has a special way of throwing stuff at us and it can lead to limited living. I’ve heard it said that in our 20’s we believe everything is ideal, in our 30’s it’s an ordeal and in our 40’s we want a new deal! Although I can identify with that to an extent,  it’s not a mentality I’d suggest subscribing to!

We develop defense mechanisms that just don’t serve us well. Our time on this planet is so brief, so very short. Why do we allow ourselves to get sucked in to the ‘poor me’ vortex? Why do we build barriers that only hold us back? I like what Zig Ziglar said – “Yesterday ended last night.” Isn’t that great? It’s true. When we live in regret we’re only robbing ourselves of the moment we’re in right now, and we can’t get back any of our moments. Ever. Think about that. It’s somewhat sobering but if we let it, it can also be exhilarating, freeing and exciting! What about now, what about today?

Let me tell you there is nothing worth staying stuck for. It’s a grand, adventurous world out there and it’s ours for the taking. We need to grasp the breadth, depth and height of every moment. Are all moments wonderful? Of course not, but our outlook and mindset can re-route us back on track if we are willing participants.

Some common barriers (or excuses) I hear people talk about are listed below. Can you identify with any of them? I know I can.

1. My partner doesn’t/won’t support me.

It can be a delicate balance between sacrifice, negotiation and compromise. If the other person isn’t on a path of learning and growth it can be a real challenge to respect their journey while being authentic to our own. One thing that comes to mind is our expectation of the Other. Would it help to remove any mental or stated expectation that they participate or support us? Could that potentially free us from the burden of wishing and hoping for something that doesn’t exist? Misplaced demands or expectations on our part often create unwarranted disappointment as a result. It’s a tough one to navigate, but a necessary one to consider.

2. I don’t have enough education.

Let me tell you, this barrier held me up for years. Why? Because I LET it. If we believe a thing, it is true for us. Since I stopped using this excuse, even if only in my head, life has opened up and changed for me. Truly.

I can't do it3. I’m too <place excuse here> ie, old/big/small/dumb/uneducated.

In our North American culture, this barrier is epidemic. The only way to stop it is to not subscribe to it. Don’t let those words escape your lips, and if you hear your child(ren) say anything resembling negative self-talk, it’s a pretty good indication that you need to listen to your own words and change them. Like begets like, right? Experience has been my teacher!

4. I’m a woman living in a male dominated career world, why bother pushing through it?

Why not? Because, dear soul, you were created to be who you are. So BE it!

I’m reminded of Marianne Williamson’s quote from her book A Return to Love: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

5. I’m a man, I don’t get any respect, why bother trying?

I have a lot of empathy for men in this day and age. There are so many demands, expectations and unrealistic judgments that have wreaked havoc on them (in my opinion). So many mixed messages – be strong, don’t show emotion, but be sensitive and show emotion. Open the door for a lady, be a gentleman. Oh wait, let the lady get the door herself. She’s an equal, that’s what she wants. I could go on about this topic but maybe I’ll save that for another day and another post.

6. I can’t handle any more rejection.

Every human being desires 2 things: 1) to be loved; and 2) to be accepted. There isn’t a person who can deny these core desires exist. When the wound of rejection takes root, it can immobilize. The trick to overcoming this dastardly and destructive feeling is to recognize that we have value regardless of what another thinks or projects. If we don’t value ourselves, rejection seems to If you want it you'll make timefollow us quite easily. Food for thought.

7. I’m too busy.

Don’t get me started. We make time for what’s important to us. Period.


What about now? What about today?
What if you’re making me all that I was meant to be?
What if our love never went away?
What if it’s lost behind words we could never find?
Baby, before it’s too late, what about now?


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    "Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round heads in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify, or vilify them. But the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do." ~ Jack Kerouac
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