I will never be a 100 pound, blonde hair-blue eyed beauty. I will never be that girl who can eat whatever she wants and not gain an ounce. I will never be 25 years old again. Unless, God forbid, cancer strikes and I have to have a double mastectomy, I will never be the girl who can go without a bra under her outfit. I mean, I could, but seriously…..Please understand, I like me. I really do. But before I could get to the place where I was comfortable in my own skin, I had to accept my limitations….Then I had to push past them.
Limitations: an ugly description of our current reality. Because of our limitations we simply never start. Our limitations, both real and imagined become the excuse that causes us to accept whatever life throws at us as the inevitable.
I can’t eat healthy, my husband is a meat and potatoes guy.
I can’t exercise, I don’t have the time, the money, the right equipment.
My (insert health issue here) will just not allow me to get healthy.
I can’t volunteer, I don’t have a car.
I can’t read to improve any area of my life, because I don’t like to read.
These are just a few of the “limitations” that I have heard given this week. Quick grammar lesson: the root word of limitations is???? That is correct! Limit. We are allowing circumstances to set our limits.
My students come to me, and they are worn down and they are frustrated. They have become so focused on their limitations that they simply cannot see anything else. Some of these “limitations” are very real. How do I help a homeless man see past his loss of everything? How do I help a young man who continues to push the people he loves out of his life realize that there is a solution? How do I help the young woman who just realized her husband is having an affair see past the very, very real limits that she feels have just been placed on her and her children? How can I help myself, a 47 year old empty nester, to run her first obstacle course? ( I mean, I have age limits, health limits, self confidence limits, BROWN hair and BROWN eyes and finding the right sports bra…lets not even go there!)
I help them to reframe the question. The question is not What limitations has life placed on me? The question must be: How do I learn to navigate through and around the limitations that I am currently facing? If you can move or work through and around anything, then it is no longer a limit, what you thought was a limit is really just an obstacle.Whereas a limit says You’re done, you cannot proceed, An obstacle is screaming Figure out a way over, under around or through, just keep going! (I know about obstacles, because I run obstacle course races regularly…brown hair brown eyes and all.)
Now, if you were paying attention, then we just reframed every limit you feel you are currently facing, we turned them into obstacles. First, identify the obstacle; then, figure out a way through it or around it, over it or under it, and then let me know how it changes your life!