Mental Barriers

1stqtr07 058Walls, restrictions, limitations; often self-imposed and self-limiting; a form of self-imprisonment….

Hidden doubts and fears build walls around you. Paul Williams

Activity is a great antidote for sitting around and worrying. Margo Howard
Do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain… Ralph W Emerson

Barriers are structures that are used keep things in or to keep them out. We use mental barriers to keep perceived threats out and to keep our weaknesses in and hidden. These self-imposed barriers are constructed to keep us “safely” in our comfort zones. We have determined to live life as risk free as possible and do this by fortifying ourselves behind a well protected mental fortress.
We defend our mental barriers from outside influences. As a result we reject or ignore many opportunities to learn and experience new things. We avoid taking risks and miss opportunities for stretching our boundaries. We do not want outside things, new influences or anything that interfere with our comfort. Our barriers are designed to keep us isolated, protected and to minimize our exposure.
Subconsciously we build these barriers not only because we want to keep the outside out, but we are fearful and afraid of being exposed to failures and to feeling bad about ourselves. Fear of failure robs us of the motivation and discipline to push forward. Our barriers provide us a bountiful supply of excuses. Finding obstacles in front of us, makes it much easier to give up, quit or retreat. Depending upon our level of cowardliness, we give up rather easily.
These barriers of self-imprisonment keep us from being exposed to new adventures, opportunities, and learning experiences. We fear what lies on the other side; that our “apple cart” might get upset and mess up our comfort zone. This is analogous to the picture of the ostrich with its head buried in the sand to protect itself. We usually are our own worst enemies. We do cut ourselves off from extremely valuable and unlimited learning experiences.
Our talents, skills and abilities are locked up inside, buried under our doubts and fears. Many of us operate at a very low level of efficiency compared to what we can really do with our lives. Indeed we are our own jailers. We imprison ourselves because of irrational fears. Lacking self-confidence, perseverance, courage and a sufficient sense of purpose helps to keep us jailed inside our comfort zone. We need to be honest; we are always free to leave our self-imposed incarceration at any time. All we have to do is to open the door and walk out into the sunshine of opportunity. There are many good and worthwhile experiences awaiting us.
Challenge: Many things you perceive as barriers are self-imposed. These heavy doors have no locks. They are there because you want them to be. It is easier for you to give up when you have something to blame. In order to be more and to accomplish more; escape, decide to leave the confines of your comfort zone. The door is unlocked. Free yourself from self-imprisonment. Tear down your barriers. You are free to walk into freedom and a better life.
Wisdom: Determination gives you the resolve to keep going in spite of the roadblocks that lay before you. Denis Waitley

Spiritual: (NIV)
For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7

In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:6

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go: I will counsel you and watch over you. Psalm 32:8

Many of the barriers in front of us are only our imaginations. With God’s help there is nothing we cannot do as long as it is in God’s will for doing so. Many of the things in front of us are there because of doubts, fears, and limiting beliefs. Perceived weaknesses and shortcomings keep us from achieving our God-given potential. He is on our side and wants us to become all we can become. We must want and seek his help, open the door and step forward.

Prayer: Help me to use your strength to overcome my self-imposed barriers in front of me.

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