Holding yourself back is a learned behavior that often becomes a habit, and may come from one or both parents. It is built on, and perpetuated by, related attitudes and behaviors. In addition to the learned behaviors, there may be inherited traits that support it as well. You may be more pessimistic, have less vibrant health or stamina, or be more introverted.

From observing your parents, the direct comments they make, and the subtle cues they give you, you learn: don’t say what you think, don’t trust what you think, don’t be too visible, don’t take risks. You get the message to go slow, make sure things are just right, put others’ needs before yours. The consequences are huge. The result is you hold yourself back, squelch yourself, and sometimes you don’t even know what you want or what you feel. You may lack energy, fail to take action on things that are important to you, get sick often, or suffer serious or chronic illness.

You definitely are not living your fullest and most meaningful life. The pain of not being yourself, of holding yourself back, affects every aspect of your life including your health, relationships, and financial success.

Holding yourself back is a bad habit with serious, life-altering consequences. When you realize the trances, beliefs, and behaviors that support it, you can learn to replace it with healthier behaviors that will bring more fulfilling outcomes to your life.

Awareness is the first step. When you realize that you have a habit—that you’re actually in an unconscious trance—you can to choose to change it. Habits can be reduced or eliminated when you recognize what they are, recognize what purpose they were meant to serve, and are committed to achieving a more fulfilling life. Then you can find healthier, more effective ways to accomplish that goal. And, if you have children, you can stop passing on this bad habit of holding yourself back and being less than you can be.

Love to hear your thoughts and questions! Please comment below.

From the No Doubt Zone™,
Dr. K

A related article written by Dr. K. was published by Bustle: These 12 Bad Habits Are Really Easy To Inherit From Your Parents