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Archive for January 2015

Overcome Your Limiting Self Image

Posted on: January 15th, 2015 by Pam Norton 7 Comments

Are you tired of living the same year, year after year? Are you stuck in the same situation wrestling with the same problems? If that sounds familiar, it’s time to break free.

It’s time to step into your best self – into the power of everything you’ve got inside you – all of your greatness and all of what you’ve had to overcome. Your skills, your natural talents, your life experience – the lessons you learned on the playground or playing sports, what you learned from your parents, and everything you’ve had to learn from the School of Hard Knocks.

The keys are already there. We all have a view of ourselves, a set of beliefs about who we are and the extent of our potential. Well guess what…you’re wrong. Well, maybe not wrong, but I guarantee that your view of yourself and your beliefs about your potential are nowhere near the upper limits of what’s inside of you. What are beliefs, after all? Just habitual thoughts. Maybe it’s time to change those habitual thoughts and craft a new self-image.

People have called me tough (I hope in a nice way), and recently someone who I respect deeply said I was a “force to be reckoned with.” I cringed a little, but they were clearly seeing something in me that I wasn’t seeing in myself.

What great and empowering words have people used to describe you? Did you cringe wondering or doubting what they were seeing? If so, it’s time to get over yourself. Get over those pre-conceived notions about your inner power, about the upper limits of your potential and those self-imposed boundaries. Here’s how to get started:

  1. Dig out any personality assessments you’ve taken and performance reviews (if they were fantastic) and take a fresh look. Assessments are great tools because someone else is putting words around concepts that we don’t or won’t see in ourselves.  Whether it’s StrengthsFinder, DISC, Myers Briggs, CVI – they’re all good. If you’ve never taken any of these, try StrengthsFinder. You can purchase a log-in ID directly from Gallup, and you’ll get a detailed report and action plan – no coach required. (Although if you’d like to work with a coach, I’m here for you!) Pull out words or phrases that resonate with you. Don’t worry about whether you feel you exemplify those words. If you’re drawn to them, there’s a reason.
  2. What are the great things that people have said to or about you over the years that you dismissed because you didn’t see them in yourself? Add those to your list. Go ahead – you don’t have to show it to anybody.
  3. Take a look at this list and come up with at least 10 other words that could be used to define those things. Take yourself out of the picture and just deal with the words. Use a thesaurus or dictionary.
  4. Now go back through that list and think of five more words that you were afraid to put on the list or didn’t think of the first time around because you were thinking too small. What is it about these words that scare you?
  5. Get yourself a visual reminder of what those words mean to you and look at it every day – perhaps a picture or a quote. You’ll start to become comfortable with the descriptions, and when you do you’ll find your own way to start living into them.

Dad_What A Week

My reminder is pictured above. It’s a caricature of my Dad given as a reward for a grueling week when he worked at Boeing. (Note all those yellow lines spanning the map.)  After doing this exercise, I dug this out of my closet and hung it over my desk.  Tough and a force to be reckoned with indeed!



About Pam: As a Career Success Coach, I help individuals and teams dig deep to tap into their strengths and potential, eliminate self-sabotaging behaviors, think and execute strategically, and get more success and fulfillment from their careers. You can learn more about me at While you’re there, download my free guide to creating a resume that will help you stand out from the crowd, 7 Steps to a Power-Packed Resume. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn and Facebook.