What Is The Underlying Belief That Stops You From Taking Action?


Our problems exist on two levels, the surface level and the underlying level.

Surface level problems are what you are aware of like my client, a program manager at a large non-profit, who said, “I don’t know what I want to do next”.

But to solve the surface level problem we must first address the underlying level problem, these are problems you are not aware of.

Through our coaching work he realized that he had a fear of failure.

He was afraid that if he identified what he wanted to do and it felt out of reach then he would only disappoint himself.

Changing careers felt like an impossible task to him.

His perfectionist tendencies stopped him from entertaining any ideas he might fail at.

The result was living in this perpetual cycle of stuck.

By not risking anything he was rewarding his need not to fail.

After we identified his underlying limiting belief that he had to be perfect and couldn’t fail.

We created a new belief that was aligned with his goal of finding a new job.

He gave himself permission to be curious, to explore new options and to learn through research what would be a good fit for him.

He stopped procrastinating out of fear of failure and started taking action out of a desire to learn what was possible for him.

By shifting the underlying belief we cured the surface level problem. 

What is really stopping you for achieving your goals?


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Mo Chanmugham, Esq., ACC is a former entertainment lawyer turned executive career coach and the founder of MGC Coaching. He helps ambitious professionals who are feeling stuck gain the clarity and confidence they need to create more fulfilling careers.