I don’t want to brag, but I’m really good at three things:
Watching Japanese anime, lifting heavy stuff from the ground, and reading psychological studies… for fun.
Today I wanna talk about #3.
Specifically, why are we SO GREAT at getting in our own way?
You can track this tendency back to our beliefs about ourselves, other people, our peers, and the circumstances around us. These beliefs are so ingrained into our internal psychology that they’re hidden to us.
They’re the stories we tell ourselves. Stories about what we can or can’t do. These narratives — or beliefs — holds us back in every part of life.
I call these beliefs, “Hidden Narratives.”
- “You need an MBA to start a business…”
- “This guy or girl is too good looking for me to ask them out…”
- “It’s not the right time to ask for a raise or a promotion…”
- “This new diet would never work for me…”
- “People are going to stare at me if I start going to the gym…”
I struggled with my own Hidden Narratives for years.
But if you’re serious about growing your business, you gotta face these narratives head-on.
It’s kinda like the movie, Limitless.
In the movie, Bradley Cooper’s character meets an old friend who offers him a mysterious pill. This pill lets him access 100% of his brain abilities. He goes from being a struggling, alcoholic writer and becomes a financial wizard with close to superhuman powers.
What if you actually could “unlock” more potential like Bradley Cooper does in the movie?
That’s the essence of facing your Hidden Narratives head-on.
But first, you have to identify them, which means overcoming years of mental conditioning and old habits.
But how do you do that?
Here’s a quick exercise to help you identify the Hidden Narratives that might be holding you back:
(1) Identify your #1 goal you’re trying to achieve. (Yeah, you’ve got to have a goal. Otherwise, if you just want to stay where you are, nothing’s holding you back. Duh.)
(2) What’s the #1 factor holding you back from reaching the goal you outlined in Step #1? Be brutally honest. Is it time? Money? Knowledge? What is it? Again, this is not an exercise to make you feel good. It’s an exercise to help you grow. And look, growth ain’t a sugarcoated cupcake with sunshine and rainbows for toppings. This is hard work. So be honest… and finally…
(3) Ask yourself this question: “Is my assumption actually true?” Whatever you wrote in Step #2, ask yourself whether that belief is actually holding you back. 99.99% of the time, it’s just a story. It’s a Hidden Narrative. It’s something your subconscious created to help you feel safe, which is totally fine. But as the adage goes: “Your comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.”
You shouldn’t fear or be ashamed of your Hidden Narratives, we all have them.
The solution isn’t to beat yourself over the head with a hammer. Nothing incredible ever came from feeling sorry for ourselves. No. The answer is to understand these Hidden Narratives and then conquer them.
Let me know if you want me to dive more into this concept of Hidden Narratives in the future.
On a different note:
I’m working on some new marketing material, and I want to make sure nothing’s missing. Would you let me know the first question that comes to mind when you think about writing sales emails?
I’m using a simple Google form to track feedback.
If you’re open to helping out, plug your #1 question here: