(This is part 10 in the “Selfie” series. Read part 9 here.)
In GiANT we use a simple visual tool to help gain clarity on what is holding us back: Inhibition or Prohibition? It’s good to know the difference, and it’s even better to have an idea of what is really behind our limitations.
What’s the Difference?
Prohibition is pictured with handcuffs. Literally, you have no choice. You can’t break out of that which, by outside forces, won’t let you move. You won’t become an Olympic pole vaulter. You won’t build an aircraft carrier from scratch. You won’t memorize all the contents of the Library of Congress word for word. You won’t be allowed to stroll around inside your bank’s vault. So, if you’re Prohibited you might be disappointed, but you’ll also have clarity on what is possible, and you’ll have the presence of mind to direct your efforts elsewhere.
Inhibition is pictured differently: it portrays and internal dialog of uncertainty. Inhibition is not literally impossible or practically impossible, but something is holding you back. Inhibition means that the governor is internal. It may be wise to be inhibited, so it could be a healthy internal dialogue which puts the brakes on. “Maybe I shouldn’t attempt to swim the English Channel.” “Maybe I should consider more options.” “Maybe I shouldn’t spend this money.”
But in this case we’re talking about being stuck; being held back. In the case of unhelpful or unhealthy inhibitions we are holding ourselves back from something that would be achievable and life-giving if we only took the steps and had the discipline to do it. “Maybe I could have a vacation.” “Maybe I could help that person.” “Maybe I should confront someone who needs to be challenged.” “I can’t get over my insecurities.” “I think I’ll dance.”
Taking Off the Shackles
Maybe your tribe prohibits you from dancing. Or maybe you inhibit yourself because of internal fear of judgement. I don’t care if you dance, but if you don’t dance I want you to know why. And if you want to dance I hope you will. Who says you can’t?
The important thing is that the question is considered. Inhibited or prohibited? Who says you can’t? It can be liberating to know that something is Prohibited, because we can move on. And it can be liberating to know that what we’re thinking about could actually be achieved.
I help individuals, teams, and organizations win, so look me up. And if we get in the same space feel free to dance, as long as it’s during the commercials.