The Most Limiting Identity

One of the biggest BS beliefs and limiting identities is that of a martyr.

Those afflicted with this special calamity often see giving up on their goals (or not actively pursuing them) as an act of kindness or graciousness. Although they may not label it as giving up or pushing them aside.

To this person, it sounds more like putting off or delaying a specific task or tasks to help someone else out. Or a relaxing of standards to make someone else happy in the moment (so they think). 

Martyrdom and Altruism are cleverly disguised to that person and sound more like...

  • I don't want to hurt Doohicky's feelings by saying no, so I accepted the invitation to chair this new committee, even though it means spending 15 hours a week doing it. I guess I'll wait to launch my new business, even thoughI was feeling particularly inspired.
  • So-and-so asked me to go to lunch and she sounded like she really needed a friend to talk to, even though we're not really that close. I'll just be a little behind schedule and can make it up this weekend (instead of meal prepping for the week so I can stay on track with my nutrition).
  • I really prefer not to drink during the week because I'm trying to lose weight and I know I'm not my best the next day but my friend didn't want to drink alone, so I had a couple of glasses of wine with her. And I can't not have birthday cake tomorrow with co-worker and not celebrate her birthday. And then there's that banquet Thursday night and I must eat there as to not offend the person who invited me. I guess I'll try to get back on track next week.
  • I really need some help with this project but I don't want to put anyone out by asking for help. I don't want them to have to go to any trouble.

Seems so altruistic to "step up" and help someone out.

But do you know the definition of Altruistic on a Motivators assessment?

Altruism is defined as "an expression of the need or energy to benefit others at the expense of self. At times, there’s genuine sincerity in this dimension to help others, but not always. Oftentimes an intense level within this dimension is more associated with low self-worth.

Wow. Did that fully sink in yet?



We will often do more for others than we will ourselves- it's true, at least for some people. Not a bad thing at all...until it becomes sacrificing ourselves and not becoming who we were meant to be. And/or allowing others to take advantage of us. Not cool.

Who do you think you are to squander your unique combination of talents, abilities, gifts, dreams and desires God gave you? They are divinely ordained with purpose, for a purpose. The Almighty does not make mistakes. He made, for a reason. He whispers and steers you with them. All you have to do is listen, tune in, and act.

But Stacie- I am meant to take care of others - that IS my gift.

Listen, I get it. Sometimes the details are a little muddy and it's hard to know when to stay the course and when you are being asked to deviate and change course.

Here's a clue:

Following your purpose and allowing yourself to be pulled off course are two completely different things.

If you are really listening to what is meant for your life and standing up for who you believe you were meant to be, then it is not at the EXPENSE of self. It IS self. It is EXPANSE of self. It's certainly not martyrdom, therefore you don't feel the need to lament about it.

Following your purpose feels fulfilling and meaningful. It feels like growth. It feels expansive.

Martyrdom feels purposeless and useless. Like standing still, which really means going backwards because there is no such thing as standing still. You're either growing or dying. Martyrdom feels constrictive, like you're getting smaller. That you MUST get smaller so that someone else can grow. That they can't grow unless you shrink.

And that simply is not true.

Martyrdom and altruism in this sense, is a slippery, deceptive, and extremely damaging and limiting belief. For you, and those around you whose lives you touch. You are not doing them any favors.

It's great to step up in service of others if that's what you were built to do.

To know for sure, look at the highest version of yourself, and do the same for others. If your decisions are coming from your highest version or yourself and you're considering other people's highest version of themselves, then you're on the right track. 

If you are enabling a lower version of yourself or someone else, then think again. 

Raise the collective; don't lower it. 

Today is the day to #GoForIt and #LiveDeliberately.

Founder, Personal Evolution Co.

P.S. -  

Is it time to re-evaluate what "success" looks like now?

Join us as we discuss one of the most influential self-development books of all time: Stephen Covey's 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

If you're feeling unsure about what to set your sights on in 2022, or you've noticed that you're not as enthusiastic as you once were...

then join this group of success rockstars to reinvent what's possible for you in the new year.


It's more affordable than you think.

It starts in January.