Barriers – they are all around us. And they can be so frustrating.

Perhaps your boss placed barriers around a big project you are spearheading. Or maybe there are regulations that stand in the way of something you are trying to accomplish. Even worse, you’ve created your own self-limiting beliefs you have about your abilities to achieve, your abilities to lead, or your ability to give a presentation to your peers. The list of possible barriers can be long.

–         Barriers prevent us from going where we want to go.

–         Barriers cause us to travel pathways that we were not planning to take.

–         Barriers can be debilitating, stopping us from progressing at all.

But barriers can be overcome.

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There wasn’t a barrier, a block, or a fence that would have kept the University of Tennessee fans and students from storming the field and tearing down the goalpost after the Volunteers beat the University of Alabama Crimson Tide this past Saturday.

People celebrating, particularly students, can be creative, resourceful, and very persistent. There’s a lot to learn from them about breaking through barriers.

I’d like you to pause before your next problem, challenge, or barrier to ponder these questions:

Is the barrier real or is the barrier something that you’ve imagined?

Have you exaggerated the size of the barrier?

If the barrier is real, what plan can you put in place to overcome the barrier?

How can you be creative, resourceful, and persistent to push through a real or perceived barrier?

What is ONE step you can take to overcome the barrier?

If it’s perceived, tell yourself that and move on. If it’s real, take some time to really think through possible solutions and then act on the best one. Refuse to give up just because there is a barrier. Ask for opinions and advice from colleagues, friends, and family that you hold in high regard. Young people in your life might be able to approach your barrier from a different perspective. Ask them. Read stories of others who have broken barriers that no one accomplished before (i.e., stories of inventors, athletes, mountain climbers, artists, etc.).

A barrier may make your journey more difficult, but the feeling you get when you break through or go around a barrier can take you from frustration to freedom, from exhausting to exhilarating, from limited to limitless.

#BreakingthroughBarriers #LeadershipDevelopment #Pausing #TennesseeVols #Pausitivity

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