What gets in the way is often not logistical, i.e. not knowing what to do or how to do it. Rather, it is our own personal blockages. Those often non-conscious, psychological barriers that stop us from doing what we already know.
By logistical, I am referring to those very natural actions you would take when setting out to do something. Planning, scheduling, implementing. For example, if you want to get a new job there will be certain actions that will have to be taken — meeting potential employers and recruiters for coffee and the like. So, if you feel stuck in your role, chances are it is not for lacking knowledge about the logistics of job search. Chances are there are more fundamental psychological barriers at play. Perhaps to do with your relationship to change or uncertainty around what really motivates you?
The same can be said for personal and professional relationships. You may really need to have an open conversation with a colleague or friend, but just cannot bring yourself to do it. The question is what is stopping you from taking that step? What psychological barriers are at play? Is it a fear of conflict or speaking up? Is it something to do with ‘staying out of trouble’?
Like bad friends
Our psychological barriers are like dishonest friends. The provide the illusion of security that comes from habit, all the while working to keep us disempowered. And, because these psychological barriers are so familiar to us, they easily elude our attention. Hiding outside of your conscious awareness, they stop you from being able to do what you really want to. They might even falsely divert your attention to something logistical as a smoke screen!
Noticing your psychological barriers
The primary step to breaking free is noticing when what stops you is not a matter of logistics. That it really is something to do with your relationship to the activity. You immediately empower yourself by doing so because you can grapple with the psychological barriers head on. You are no longer distracted by the wrong thing.
Harsha is a 1:1 coach and independent thinker based in London. He empowers people to find more clarity, confidence and focus in their lives — to cut through the noise, in a world so full of it. Harsha’s new book, Machine Ego: Tragedy of the Modern Mind, is now available in paperback and Kindle through Amazon.