How to Transcend Our Own Limitations

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Self Transcendence is synonymous with our own self improvement. If we always stay in our ‘comfort zone’ we make no progress. It is important to know how we can achieve more. Here, achieve is perhaps not the right word – Self-transcendence is not just about achieving more, it is also about overcoming our negative limited thoughts and beliefs

These are some suggestions to help you transcend your own limitations

Set Targets

If you want to transcend yourself, you need to have something to aim for. Set realistic goals and targets. This maybe getting rid of a bad habit; it may be getting up 30 minutes earlier; it may be to improve your physical health. If you have something to aim for it remains a powerful motivation. As you achieve a small improvement, you can continue to raise the target. If it is not so easy to achieve your goals – don’t give up. Self transcendence requires patience, and perseverance.

Don’t Be Limited by Your Own Thoughts

The first thing we need to be aware of, is how easily we can be affected by our own self imposed limitations. Quite often, we may be unaware of how much we allow our thoughts to limit our perspective and capacities. These thoughts and ideas are often deeply embedded in our mind. However, whilst we cherish these thoughts, they will always act as an invisible barrier. Examine carefully, your own thoughts. If you find yourself often saying “I can’t do that..” try to at least suspend disbelief.

Don’t Listen to People’s Negativity

The world has more than its fair share of critics. They have a role to play; but, progress does not come through listening to the doubts, suspicions and disbelief of critics. It is important to be able to differentiate between constructive advice and criticism; when you can learn to ignore negativity you are free to aim for the highest.

Be Focused and Wholly Committed

Our self-transcendence does not come through half hearted attempts. If we can harness the power of concentration we will gain unimaginable focus. True concentration is the ability to focus on one thing to the the exclusion of all else. Usually, our attention is dispersed – this makes our energy equally dispersed; when we learn to concentrate our self improvement will come spontaneously.

Remember Many Things were Impossible

If we always listened to the so called ‘experts’ we would probably still be travelling around in a horse and cart. Many times we see people proudly proclaiming: ‘that is impossible’ When we look at things from the limitations of the mind, they probably do seem impossible. But, when we bring our inner soul qualities to the fore, is anything impossible?

Inspiration of Personal Examples

Until quite recently, the Olympics didn’t allow women to compete in the marathon (it was added as late as 1984) it was felt women were incapable of running such distances. However, we now see, the women’s marathon time being quite close to men’s.

In New York, I have a couple of friends who have completed the 3100 mile race (contestants usually run 70 miles per day for 2 months). Suprabha Beckjord (female) has completed the race 10 times. Meeting her you wouldn’t notice anything special, which indicated great running potential. Yet, with great inner courage and determination she has completed a remarkable feat; a feat, that her mind would probably have thought impossible at one time. (3100 miles *10 is a long way, the circumference of the earth is 24,900 miles)

I’m not saying we all have to start ultra distance running. Self Transcendence is not just about physical achievements; it is about being willing to let go of all self imposed limitations. Look closely at yourself; examine in which areas you could easily do more. Which aspects of your life would you like to transcend? However, there are many examples of individual self-transcendence that we can use for our own inspiration.

The 3100 mile race is organised by the Sri Chinmoy Marathon team. It is the world’s longest certified race and has been held annually since 1996.

Photo by Tejvan, Oxford

4 thoughts on “How to Transcend Our Own Limitations”

  1. The problem is that those who have the most self-limiting thoughts and beliefs have been trained that way in their upbringing. From experience, I can say it takes years of hard work to free yourself and truly believe you can do anything you set your mind to. To plant the seed of possibility and nurture it in them is the greatest gift you can anyone.

  2. Thanks for the brilliant writeup. I’ll be glad to get more material on self transcendance

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