You Weren’t Born Feeling Incapable…

Here’s another personal development point made in a quote image of mine…

I took this photo at Whitstable, Kent, UK, back in June 2015. It’s a cracking spot to walk along by the sea and it offers some great sunsets. When you can take in the air in an evening like that, perspective seems to change, and more seems possible.

That’s what I chose it to go with the words, so let’s look a little bit closer at the point…

“You weren’t born feeling incapable or inadequate. You learnt it. So unlearn it.”

You might say that we most certainly are born incapable, that we are totally dependant on others, in the form of adults, if we are to survive.

That’s true indeed, but the key is that although we might be *born* incapable, we aren’t born *feeling* incapable.

Brain science has shown that when we are born, we have way more neural connections in our brain than we do as adults. We may add new ones as we grow and develop, but in fact we discard those that we find we don’t need, we just stop using them.

That’s not something we do on a conscious level, it’s something that happens without us knowing.

As we grow up, in an effort to protect us, adults tell us “you can’t do that,” “you mustn’t do this,” “that’s not the way.” As this happens, the neural connections are effectively shut down, as our belief sets and internal models of the world and our place in it get shaped, basically by others.

As time goes on, as we grow into an awareness of our ‘self’, we take onboard the belief set that was put on us, and start to re-enforce it ourselves, and this is something that *can* be a conscious act.

We start to think, maybe even before we can talk, that certain things are ‘only for others‘. As you can imagine, since this starts at such an early stage of life, it becomes ingrained, and deeply.

The concept of inadequacy certainly only comes later in the development process, but still early in life. If there’s any kind of segregation for example, or we’re stopped doing something ‘to keep us from harm’, we come to think that if others can do it but we can’t, we are in some way less than they are. In other words, inadequate.

This combination of incapability belief and inadequacy belief then stays with us through childhood, as we view the outside world in a way that validates our internal model.

We take it into adolescence and then on into adulthood. All the way along that journey, as well as validating the beliefs ourselves, there are others who might go out of their way to validate it for us! People who were brought up with a sense of superiority, or an over inflated sense of capability will need to see others as below them in order to validate their own internal models, and so the patterns are perpetuated.

So, does it always have to be like this..?

No. No, it doesn’t.

"Gordon Bryan", "Whitstable",

If our beliefs of incapability or inadequacy were learnt, they can be unlearnt, to be replaced by new ones. When we stopped using all those extra neural connections we had when at birth. They weren’t lost, they were just put into a dormant state.

That means they can be reactivated. It may feel like you are making new ones, but it’s just firing up something that’s always been there.

Now, there are some important points to make at this point…

It might be that a certain belief in incapability is true, for example, certain sporting achievements need a certain physiological make up, and if your body doesn’t have it, it could be that no amount of work on the body will ever develop that make up enough.

In that case, the physical achievement might not be possible after all. The thing is, that needs to be found out by taking action and trying, and trying as long and as hard as possible until we know for sure! Just assuming it to be the case is not good enough, that’s just slipping back into your old patterns.

Another point to be made is that it may not be easy. You are doing a rewiring job on your brain that has been intricately woven for years, decades maybe, so it will take time, and patience is needed.

Having said that, you may well be surprised at just how quickly things can start to change – taking action can bring a result which has you thinking ‘oh that wasn’t as hard as I thought,’ at which point you immediately make a change to your belief about your capability, which in turn immediately makes a change to your belief about inadequacy.

Ask the questions, learn the techniques, take the steps, and the changes will come.

So, you may have learnt your feelings of incapability or inadequacy before you knew anything about it, yes. Now that you *do* know about it though, you can unlearn them by replacing them with new beliefs, based on different results, based on different actions.

Try it, it can change your life, it can *transform* it!

Ok, I’d love to hear what you think – do leave a comment.

‘Til Next Time,
Health & happiness,
P.S. By the way, if you’d like to do something about that unlearning, take a look at my free video series covering my 8 step goal achievement formula

Do leave a comment!

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  • Hey Gordon

    Good post thanks for the write up. I particularly liked this at the end:

    Ask the questions, learn the techniques, take the steps, and the changes will come.

    Its so true! Most people don’t even ask questions. They just accept what is as ‘what is’.


    • Hi Sam,
      Thanks – yes you’re right, most people don’t even ask the questions, and this is where the revelations can come: if they are prompted to start asking, everything changes!
      Thanks for stopping by!
      Cheers, Gordon