3 Steps to Overcome Career-Limiting Beliefs

Work beliefs and personal values are the guiding force behind how you show up and approach work. They control the actions you will or won’t take to get ahead.

But career limiting beliefs don’t have to be set in stone. You have the power to change what isn’t working for you. Here’s 3 steps to get you started:

1. What Do You Believe and Value at Work?

Can you list off your top work beliefs and values? Can you explain them to others? If not, it’s time to discover more about what makes you tick.

If you don’t understand what drives your decisions and behaviors, it will be difficult to identify what you need to adapt, and significantly hinder your ability to get ahead.

Here’s some questions to get you thinking…

  • Beliefs – what do you know to be true? It’s a feeling of certainty. You may believe hard work always pays off, well done is better than well said, or it’s better to be safe than sorry. Your favorite quotes, mottos, or sayings can be great indications of you what you believe.
  • Values – what do you hold dear? These are often qualities you admire in others: honesty, integrity, kindness. The attributes you dislike in others can also clue you into your values. If you’re annoyed by braggers, you probably value modesty. Dislike big egos? You value humility.

2. How Do Your Work Beliefs Help or Hinder You?

Once you understand your work beliefs and values, the next step is recognizing how they influence your decisions, behaviors, and everyday actions. Here’s a few common limiting beliefs many of us have about work:

  • We often value humility and modesty, which makes it more difficult to get credit and visibility for our contributions to the business. Our results can get mistakenly attributed to our coworkers or manager.

  • We often believe it’s better to think before we speak, which makes it challenging to contribute during brainstorming sessions. Our silence may be misinterpreted as a lack of interest in the business.

  • We sometimes believe it’s better to be safe than sorry, which can make it harder to get outside our comfort zones. In turn, it can be challenging to be seen as a high potential employee who is ready to take on more responsibility. 

Once you recognize how your limiting beliefs are hindering your career goals, then you can choose to take action in a way that remains true to who you are. This often means adopting new, more empowering beliefs to reach your goals. 

3. What Additional Beliefs Can You Adopt?

Beliefs are often impressed in us at an early age and difficult to change. But adapting career-limiting beliefs is one of the most important ways we can  accelerate our path to a promotion.

Often this can be achieved by adding to your belief system.

For example, one of the many great qualities of great employees is the high value we place on being considerate of others—like quietly listening intently while we allow coworkers to speak without interruption. 

As such, it can be disheartening to be told we need to communicate more forcefully or aggressively at work. Those words may even make it seem like you need to become someone you’re not to get promoted. You could find yourself saying things like, if that’s what it takes to get ahead, forget about it.

It’s at times like this you’ll want to consider leaning into additional, more empowering beliefs. Like believing career success is dependent upon sharing your point of view and advocating for your ideas.

You can value being a considerate coworker and believe it’s important to speak in an impactful, influential way. 

By leaning into your belief that it’s essential to advocate for your ideas, you may conclude you need to present your point of view with more potency—with authority and conviction (instead of force or aggression) using declarative statements and supporting data points.

The result, you’re able to behave in alignment with both of your work beliefs: consideration for coworkers and advocating for your ideas. And best of all, your beliefs are helping you gain valuable skills and abilities that accelerate your path to a promotion.

Final Thoughts

By all means, stand by your beliefs and values. But also take time to reflect and consider what you believe to be true about work. Be open to expanding your belief system.

I’ll leave you with these questions to consider: How are your current beliefs about work helping or hindering your path to a promotion? Is it time to expand your thinking?


About Author

As a former CMO who started her career as an admin assistant, Alison writes about climbing the corporate ladder to achieve financial freedom.

You can read more about her story here.



Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *