Mindful Hooper #3 | Limiting Beliefs

newsletter Dec 01, 2023
basketball limiting beliefs

#3 - December 2023

Turn Limiting Beliefs Into Empowering Beliefs

Welcome to The Mindful Hooper, a monthly newsletter that helps you enhance your basketball mental game and stay up-to-date with everything Basketball Mindset Training.

This month's theme: Limiting Beliefs.

To take the next step as a basketball player, it's important to become aware of any limiting beliefs you might have. Limiting beliefs limit your full potential. When you become aware of limiting beliefs and then transform them into more empowering beliefs, that's when you remove the ceiling on your potential and you allow the impossible to become possible

What's inside:

  • 💬 Quote of the Month: Words of wisdom from Michael Jordan's HoF speech.
  • 🧠 Mindset Tips: What limiting beliefs are, why they hurt your basketball development, and what to do about them.
  • 🧘‍♂️ Mental Exercise: Learn how to overcome your limiting beliefs.
  • 🎦 Content Recap: The latest videos and posts from BMT in case you missed it.

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"Never say never because limits, like fears, are often just an illusion."

- Michael Jordan

Basketball players often set limits on themselves, believing that they can never achieve certain goals or reach a certain level of skill. "I'll never play in college or professionally. There's no chance." Or: "I'm just not a good shooter and I never will be."

These limits can stem from the fear of failure, doubts about their abilities, or negative beliefs about their potential.

As MJ reminds us here though, these limits are often just illusions -- figments of our imagination based on our mindset and perception. 

If instead we become aware of the illusions in our mind and believe that we can achieve what we want to achieve, then we open up the possibility for it to happen (with work).

More on limiting beliefs below.

More Quotes About Limiting Beliefs

• “Believe you can, believe you can't; either way, you're right." - Henry Ford

• “You make your beliefs, then your beliefs make you." - Marisa Peer

• "Whatever you believe becomes your reality. If you believe you can do something, you will. If you believe you can't do something, you won't. You become what you think." - BasketballMindsetTraining

More MJ Quotes: Top 50 Michael Jordan Quotes About Basketball And Life >>





What Are Limiting Beliefs

Limiting beliefs are negative beliefs that hinder personal growth and potential. 

These beliefs are deeply ingrained (and sometimes subconscious) and can hold basketball players back from reaching their full potential. Limiting beliefs don't help you grow in anyway. They don't help you become a better basketball player. The goal of the limiting belief is to keep you right where you are as a player.

Limiting beliefs create mental barriers that prevent players from doing things like taking risks, pursuing their goals, achieving success, or working on certain basketball skills due to doubt in that skill. 

Limiting beliefs can make a player doubt their abilities, fear failing, or have negative beliefs about reaching a certain level of skill or performance.

Examples of Common Limiting Beliefs In Basketball

Here are some examples of limiting beliefs that a basketball player may have:

  • "I'll never make the varsity/college/pro team"
  • "I'm not good at making free throws at the end of games"
  • "I'm bad at dribbling with my weak-hand and I always will be"
    • This is a big one. A common limiting belief players have is that talent is fixed and can't be improved. Players might think the talent they were born with is all they have and there's no improving it. This isn't true though! Anyone can get better at anything with practice and repetition.

Really anything that starts with:

  • "I can't ___"
  • "I won't ___"
  • "I'll never ___"
  • "I'm not good at ___"

Overcoming Limiting Beliefs

Overcoming limiting beliefs in basketball requires a combination of self-awareness, mindset shifts, and intentional action.

1. Become Aware

The first step is to identify and acknowledge the limiting beliefs that are holding you back. Take some time to reflect on your thoughts and beliefs about your basketball abilities, your performance on the court, and your overall potential.

What do you think about yourself as a basketball player? What skills do you think you're good at and which skills do you think you aren't good at/will never get better at?

What do you believe is possible for you to achieve in your career and what do you think is unlikely or impossible?

2. Challenge Them

Once you have identified your limiting beliefs, challenge them. Look for evidence against those beliefs. Look for examples of other players who have overcome similar challenges or who have achieved success despite perceived limitations. This can help you reframe your beliefs and open up to new possibilities.

For example, a limiting belief could be that you think you'll never make it far in your career because you aren't tall enough (*cough, cough. That was me 👀). Look for evidence to the contrary. How about 5'3 Mugsey Bogues or 5'5 Earl Boykins.

Or if you have a limiting belief about developing a certain skill, remind yourself of how you've improved other areas of your game. Remind yourself that it is possible. It might just take a lot of work.

3. Form New Beliefs

Next, transform those limiting beliefs of yours into more empoweringgrowth mindset beliefs. Remind yourself that you can get better at anything. It just takes learning, effort, and consistent practice. With time and repetition, you will improve.

Remind yourself that you can achieve anything. Anything is possible when you set your mind to it and you put in the work.


  • "I can't" "I can"
  • "I won't" "I will"
  • "I'm not good at __" "I'm not good at ___ YET"

4. Take Action

Finally, make the effort to push yourself beyond your comfort zone and what you previously thought was possible. Set goals that challenge you and break them down into smaller, achievable steps. Celebrate your progress along the way and use each success as evidence that you are capable of more than you may have believed.  


What limiting beliefs do you have right now in your basketball career? How might they be hurting your basketball development?

What more empowering beliefs can you replace them with?

Remember, anything is possible! Don't limit the possibilities of what you can achieve.


"I can improve any skill or achieve any goal I set my mind to. My potential is unlimited."

How Limiting Beliefs Affect Your Full Potential

Check out the video below to learn more about the negative effects that limiting beliefs have on your basketball career. This clip comes from my Mental Greatness Blueprint Course, the complete basketball mental skills training program. 




In case you missed it, here's the latest content from Basketball Mindset Training:

YouTube Videos:

21 3's In A Row - How I Beat My Record (shooting mindset tips)


Blog Posts:

The Complete Guide to Getting in the Zone in Basketball


How To Boost Your Confidence In Basketball | 10 Tips


Famous LeBron James Quotes To Inspire and Motivate You




You've made it through, but your mental training doesn't have to stop here! Here's how to take it a step further:

  • Mental Greatness Blueprint is the complete basketball mental skills training program where you’ll master all 7 elements of your basketball mindset so you can achieve mental greatness and unleash your full potential. Master your mental game today!



  • Also, if you found this newsletter helpful consider donating to help support BMT. Anything is appreciated!


Thanks for reading and I hope this helps you get better in some way.

If you have any questions or comments you can email me at [email protected]

Happy hooping!

- D


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