Believing Who You Are, Helps

Many of us have defined ourselves some 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 years ago or many be more than that ago.

One thing I've learned, in the last, 33 years of work on people from, now, over 100 countries, four million people, is human beings absolutely follow through on who they believe they are. If you said to me, "Well, I'm really going to work hard to stop smoking, but I've been a smoker my whole life. I am a smoker," I know your days are numbered. You're going to be back smoking cigarettes, again, because we all act consistent with who we believe we are.
I tell people the strongest force in the whole human personality is this need to stay consistent with how we define ourselves. If you define yourself as somebody who is really conservative, you're not going to be crazy and act nuts, unless you're really something away from normal. Then you can say it's the drug, when it's really just you finally getting permission to be yourself. You are taking any addiction as excuse. If you're a really crazy person, you act crazy, outrageous and playful. You don't act conservative because it's not who you are. Very often people say, "Well, I can't do that. I'm not that kind of person." I always say to people, "Really? When did you define yourself?
I mean, really, how many years ago did you come up with what you could and couldn't do in your life? How many years ago?" Most people, if they really look at how they're living their life today, it's based on a set of standards, a set of beliefs that they made choices about 10, 20, 30 or more years ago. Very often, we made decisions in our youth, or very young, about what to believe, about what we were capable of, about who we are as a person, and that becomes the glass ceiling, if you will, that controls us.
Aayen-e-Nau Se Darna, Tarz-e-Kuhan Pe Urna
Manzil Yehi Kathan Hai Qoumon Ki Zindagi Mein
To be afraid of the new ways, to insist on the old ones
This is the only difficult stage in the life of nations

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