Invisible Barriers: Is The “Elephant Mindset” Holding You Back From Achieving Your Dreams?

Have you ever considered which species on the planet is the most efficient?

Neither have I!

That is, until I read a story about something that had impacted Steve Jobs at a very young age.

Jobs used to tell an inspiring story about an article he read when he was a boy:

The article measured the ‘efficiency of locomotion’ of different species. That’s a fancy term for how many calories different species spend getting from Point A to Point B.

Which species was the most efficient of all? Spoiler alert: It wasn’t human beings. Not by a long shot


Believe it or not, it was the condor. The condor used the least amount of energy per distance traveled. Human beings were far down the list.

But that’s not where the study ended. The authors decided to also test the efficiency of humans on a bicycle.

And this absolutely blew away all the other species.

Jobs later said that this study was very influential on his thinking. Why?

Because he realized that human beings can adapt. We can take a situation and we can make it better.

If we are so inclined.

Invisible Barriers

Our beliefs about our own abilities both fuel and predict our success. In other words, if you imagine more for yourself, more is what you will get. On the opposite side of that coin, if you imagine less, less will be what you undoubtedly receive.

One of the basic beliefs we carry about ourselves has to do with how much, or how little, control we believe we have in becoming successful. Some people think that their ability to be successful is fixed, that they cannot alter their path. They have what I call ‘elephant thinking’.

Years ago, to domesticate elephants, trainers would tie a little rope to them in their childhood. The elephants could not break the rope at a young age. But, even when they became huge elephants, they still stay tied with a little rope that they could easily break. Why? The rope had become an invisible barrier in their minds. It had become a sentence.

There’s a different mindset available. The mindset that your life is not simply a hand you’re dealt and have to live with. In this mindset, the hand you’re dealt is just the starting point for what you will accomplish. This mindset is based on the belief that within you are the seeds to cultivate success through your efforts.

That you can adapt.

That you can overcome.

That you can create your future.

This is the mindset that inspired Jobs.

If you’ve read my ebook, The Financial Freedom Formula, you know that beliefs are extremely important to success. In my ebook I refer to beliefs as convictions. Because that’s what they are – something we are convicted to and about.

Convictions are great when they are grounded in reality. When they are not however, they become convenient excuses.

Why waste time doubting whether you can become successful, when you could start working towards success today?

Why hide deficiencies instead of learning a different way and overcoming them?

Why look for people who will just meet you where you are in life, instead of mentors who will challenge you to grow?

And why seek out the tried and true, instead of seeking new levels that will stretch you?

If you find yourself stuck in some area, ask yourself, “What beliefs do I have about this that are limiting my ability to move forward? Is this really true? Is there something else you need to believe that is more based in reality?”

The mindset of challenging your beliefs is the hallmark of the success mindset. For people with this mindset, personal success is when you work your hardest to become your best.

Mindsets change what people strive for and what they see as success. . . they change the paths, significance, and the outcomes of lives. . . they change the deepest meaning of who you will become.

Anyone can create their future. The boundaries are in the mind. Adopt the success mindset. To your freedom.

Be free. Nothing else is worth it.

Financial Freedom Monty Campbell

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