Three Barriers to Creation

I have many demands in my life – a business owner, a nonprofit leader, a father and husband, a friend – and they all have three barriers to success. This post get real deep real quick, so go with me here…


Whatever I am tasked to create, I need to have my attitude right. There are barriers to the right attitude, and I’ve narrowed those barriers down to three.

  1. Judge – If my focus is on what others are doing wrong, I cease to connect with the people with whom I’m trying to create. Whomever I’m judging, it’s not their problem. It’s mine. I’m looking to another to do the work that I’m meant to do. My focus is off, and what I’m tasked to do is done poorly.
  2. Shame – This is like judging yourself. It’s self-doubt and negative thinking. “I’m not good enough” or “my creation is worthless.” This shaming of ourselves stunts the creation and doesn’t help anyone, especially those whom we’re trying to serve. Saying you’re not good enough or your creation is worthless isn’t for you to assess. Others will assess that; you just need to create.
  3. Limit – This attitude used to bear some reality, but it doesn’t any longer. You may not know how to do the work that is required for your creation. Well then, figure it out. Google it. Watch a video, sign up for a class, go to the seminar. In today’s world, there really is no limit to what you can learn. “I can’t do it” isn’t a reality; it’s a bad attitude.

These three attitudinal barriers will get in the way of all sorts of ambitions in life. These are bad attitudes that worm their way into our work, family and social life. Take work, for example:

  • Work without Judgment. I cannot overanalyze my competition, which, to my fault, I sometimes do. I must make the best resources and create the best events that I can possibly create. When my competition does something admirable, I need to learn from them and try to beat them at the art. Grumbling about them does nothing. Ultimately, the customer isn’t fooled. They know quality when they see it, and they know a judgmental fool, too.
  • Work without Shame. As a publisher, I need to go to press, but – especially when I’m also the writer – I get wrapped up in perfectionism. I strive to be as flawless as possible, but there are deadlines to keep and a market that demands resources promptly. This is where shame strikes, and it is a dark tunnel to navigate through. I have to be honest about market realities, but I must rid my mind of the lizard that tries to ridicule my honest attempt to serve people.
  • Work without Limits. Entrepreneurs find themselves in situations all the time trying to figure out how to get something done or make a new idea work like it’s supposed to work. Sometimes they hire someone to figure it out for them. “I can’t do it” doesn’t take a huge amount of humility, but some people think it is a sign of weakness. Their response becomes, “It can’t be done.” Who says? There may be reasons not to do things, but don’t ever say “it can’t be done.” I’ll find a different vendor, thank you. That’s not how I do business.

See how this works? Removing these three attitudinal barriers opens the door to all sorts of possibilities in work and life.

What barriers do you have in your work and life?