Taking the Leap: Jason Gelios On How To Learn To Believe In Yourself
Never accept limiting beliefs as your reality. Limiting beliefs are thoughts that have us believing we can’t do something. Saying or thinking things like “I’m not good enough or I’m too old or young” are examples of limiting beliefs. These thoughts have the power to keep us from moving forward-if we allow them to.
Starting something new is scary. Learning to believe in yourself can be a critical precursor to starting a new initiative. Why is it so important to learn to believe in yourself? How can someone work on gaining these skills? In this interview series, we are talking to business leaders, authors, writers, coaches, medical professionals, teachers, to share empowering insights about “How To Learn To Believe In Yourself.” As a part of this series we had the pleasure of interviewing Jason Gelios.
Jason Gelios is a Top producing REALTOR® in Southeast Michigan, Author of the real estate book ‘Think like a REALTOR®’ and the life changing book ‘Beating The Force Of Average’, the creator of The AskJasonGelios Real Estate Show, and an Expert Media Contributor of expertise to various reputable media outlets across the globe.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive into the main focus of our interview, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?
Thank you for having me! I was your typical hyperactive boy growing up in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan. I had a love for video games and reading books with a slight motivation to be the class clown. Despite getting sent to the principal’s office often, I somehow managed to spend a lot of time in the school library reading as many Hardy Boys books as I could. I always loved the power of books and how they can pull you into their story.
After graduating high school I held multiple mundane jobs, eventually leading me to step out of my own comfort zone, to pursue a career that I could be proud of. I pursued and achieved an associate’s degree in general studies at the local community college. While I think having formal education is important, I attribute the majority of my success to what I’ve learned outside of the classroom. By remaining a student and diving into whatever information I can to be a better version of myself, back then and currently, I position myself to gain the success I desire. Had I not stepped out of my comfort zone, I would not have made that positive change that was needed in my life. And who know what I would be doing, probably nothing too great!
What or who inspired you to pursue your career? We’d love to hear the story.
My biggest motivator at the time was my wife Erica. In our early days of dating, I was witness to her dedication, and countless hours of focus and studying, towards earning a college degree in the medical field. I spent many days with her in the college library reading and enjoying our time together. This activity got me thinking about what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I knew I wasn’t happy doing the type of work I was doing, nor did I feel really passionate about it. I felt a strong need to find an opportunity that I didn’t mind doing for the rest of my life. I wanted to have something to go after without feeling that emptiness I had in my current job. The effort my wife put towards chasing her goals really set the motion for me to research what I wanted to do, and to take the leap to make that change.
It has been said that our mistakes can be our greatest teachers. Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
One event that stays top of mind was back when I was showing a client this older home in the country located on multiple acres of land. The home was dimly lit and it was difficult to navigate through the home. I was instructed to be sure we don’t let the cats out of the upstairs room. As we made our way deeper into the home my client opened the door leading to the upstairs bungalow area. In a matter of seconds, about half a dozen cats came running past us in a mad rush to get out of that area. It about scared us half to death! After we gathered all the cats we could and notifying the listing agent that we had let the cats out by accident, we had a nice laugh about it. At that moment however, it was terrifying and humiliating.
I could have dwelled on this experience and relayed to myself how I messed up and how the other people involved would perceive me. I decided to go the other route and laugh it off as a simple mistake that I learned from. This served as an important reminder that we must not take things too serious and that we need to have some humility. We must never assume we know what someone else is thinking or how they will react to something we have done.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?
In late 2022 I launched an exciting year long passion project; something that I had in my head for years prior. I wrote my second book titled ‘Beating The Force Of Average’ highlighting the helpful tips I learned throughout my career that got me to where I’m at today. I dive further into how so many people never take the leap to overcome what is called the force of average-keeping many of us in our current state accepting mediocrity for the rest of our lives. I know from experience what it’s like to be stuck under this force. Prior to taking the leap forward to pursue a career in sales I was thinking I was not able to pursue anything great or be a success in anything I pursued. Anytime the thought of going after something better entered my mind, I allowed fear and self doubt to kick in, holding me back from making any change at all. Once I learned how to overcome these things, I leaped forward towards a positive change. I feel that anyone who consumes this book will learn what it takes to make that change in their life for the better to create a life they truly want to live.
OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview. This will be intuitive to you but it will be helpful to spell this out directly. Can you help explain a few reasons why it is so important to believe in yourself? Can you share a story or give some examples?
First and foremost, it’s important to know how believing in yourself opens up doors to opportunities that don’t present themselves when you don’t believe in yourself. You can go as far as you want in life when you have a belief system in place. Believing in yourself will push you forward towards the life and success you desire.
Second, having a belief in what you are doing will propel you forward and keep you on pace, even when others don’t believe in you or what you’re doing. You must believe you can achieve anything you set your mind to and win those opportunities you chase.
Third, self-belief will present you as a better communicator, a more confident person, and a person of action. I’ve met a good amount of people who, personally and professionally, take advantage of the belief system to project themselves as a person who is on a mission to achieve what they want. These types of people are considered achievers on some sort of level.
When I first started my career in sales, I was outgoing, yet nervous, about being known as a rookie. I felt that if someone learned that I didn’t have the years of experience or product knowledge that my competition had, then I would be looked at as a fraud. It wasn’t until I developed a belief in myself and what I was doing, that I realized I am capable of helping others by providing solutions to their problems. This allowed me to overcome my fears about doing my job effectively. I further reminded myself of my other skills that I should be proud of, from effective communication to listening well when others talk. Having this self belief pulled me through those times. I can’t express enough how important it is to believe in not just yourself, but what it is you want to do or are doing.
What exactly does it mean to believe in yourself? Can I believe that I can be a great artist even though I’m not very talented? Can I believe I can be a gold medal Olympic even if I’m not athletic? Can you please explain what you mean?
I feel believing in yourself means you have the right amount of courage, self belief, and mindset, to drive you towards what you want to do. Self belief is the first step towards getting what you want out of life, however having a strong belief in yourself will only take you so far. It’s necessary to take it a step further and get the necessary skills for you to find success in your endeavors. We simply can’t say we can do something without learning how to do it. When the time comes where self-doubt and fear rear their ugly heads, having that belief in yourself coupled with the right skill set will get you through anything life throws our way.
Are there limitations to what someone can be or do in life? Of course. I personally would love to be a rock star playing songs in front of millions of people! But it would be a challenge to pursue that dream because I have no idea how to play an instrument, or sing for that matter. We must set goals that are attainable to gain the success we want-without aiming too low. This is not to say we should never dream big. It just means we have to be realistic about what we want and what we are capable of doing or becoming. There are countless stories of people who came from obscure lifestyles to achieve a life they only dreamed of. So I encourage people to find inspiration from these stories to increase their self belief and do the things they need to do daily to get where they want to be.
Was there a time when you did not believe in yourself? How did this impact your choices?
There were plenty of times when I didn’t believe in myself or that I could do something. Prior to the first successes gained, I somehow thought that it would be easier to find success because I thought as long as I focused on it, it would become a reality. It didn’t take long for me to realize the path to success is not a straight and narrow one, but filled with curves and obstacles trying to prevent us from gaining the success we desire. I would sweat profusely as I dialed for dollars in an attempt to gain peoples trust over the phone. I would make hundreds of calls a day, which really took a toll on my belief system, wearing it down by the minute. There were times I thought about quitting and taking the easier route of going back to my mundane job. I’m grateful I stuck with it and stayed the course towards the career I really wanted. All too often we think of successful people as being lucky or knowing the right people. I can tell you this is not always the case. I made the choice to keep doing what I was doing because I believed it would lead me to an even better opportunity. My choice is one that I have not regretted. When you believe in yourself, it impacts your decision making and the choices you stick with.
At what point did you realize that in order to get to the next level, it would be necessary to build up your belief in yourself? Can you share the story with us?
When I was looking to make a change to pursue a career I could be proud of, I realized I would need to have the belief in myself to make the necessary change in order for it to happen. If I didn’t believe in myself, then I would remain where I was at without any positive change happening.
I was applying for multiple companies without really following up with them. I guess I felt they would contact me if they needed someone. As you can imagine this method didn’t work for me. I decided to put the belief in myself to work. I planned physical drop-ins to all the places I had applied to and followed up with the ones I could not reach face to face. With a strong belief in myself, and the newly learned skills of reaching people effectively, I gained traction. I had multiple on the spot interviews, with one taking me on as a newbie. Had I not taken the leap and kicked my self belief into overdrive, I would have been doing the same inefficient tasks hoping for something to happen.
What are your top 5 strategies that will help someone learn to believe in themselves? Please share a story or example for each.
1 . Never accept limiting beliefs as your reality. Limiting beliefs are thoughts that have us believing we can’t do something. Saying or thinking things like “I’m not good enough or I’m too old or young” are examples of limiting beliefs. These thoughts have the power to keep us from moving forward-if we allow them to.
When I was looking to get out of my job and into a professional career, I had a limiting belief infiltrate my mind daily. I thought to myself “I’m not experienced in the career I want” and “Maybe I’m not meant for more”. I had to implement my belief system to get these limiting beliefs out of my mind.
2 . Surround yourself with awesome people. There’s a great quote by the late Jim Rohn who said “You become like the five people you spend the most time with. Choose carefully.” Surrounding yourself with people who encourage you and cause you to raise your personal belief will have a positive impact on your life.
When I entered the profession I chose, I learned how important it is to surround myself with people who had similar goals and ideas. Not only did this inspire me to do better at my career, it inspired me to keep learning and moving forward, and even set my goals slightly higher than where they were at. It was this tip that led me to gain multiple awards for being the top producer in my office!
3 . Celebrate the small successes. While it’s nice to celebrate the bigger wins in any endeavor, it’s important to remember the small successes that led to the bigger successes. Being able to reward ourselves for all successes is key to gaining and keeping the proper motivation.
I reflect back to when I won my first sales award. As I was called upon the stage, gazing upon my peers and wife in the crowd, I briefly thought about all the hard work and small wins that got me to that point. It was never just one big win that got me to win an award, but multiple small achievements that kept me motivated. In my own way, I had celebrated those small wins. For example, for every real estate closing I had, I made it a tradition to buy myself an expensive coffee on the way. This may seem trivial, but it felt good to treat myself to something I wouldn’t normally buy daily. Celebrating every small success serves as a reminder that you are on the right path.
4 . Never let fear stop you. Fear has a way of showing up when we think about doing something we feel is new or challenging. Sure, having some fear is normal and will happen no matter what. But you should never let that hold you back. You can overcome the fear you have by learning more about whatever it is you want to do, and by setting goals that get you moving.
When I was first contacting people to set appointments, I had this overwhelming fear of failing at it. I thought of everything that could possibly go wrong. There were days where these thoughts delayed my efforts holding me back from what I was supposed to be doing. It wasn’t until I learned how to overcome this fear that I had started doing what I needed to do without hesitation. It took daily learning and changing my thought process to succeed in this area. I replaced negative thoughts of ‘what could go wrong” to “what could go right”. By training my brain to remain in a growth mindset, I conquered fear and moved forward towards my daily goal.
5 . Create a routine that inspires growth. If we have time to dwell on fear and self doubt, we won’t get to where we want to be. By creating a routine that inspires you to grow, you won’t have much time to be fearful or negative. Your level of anxiety will decrease and you will find yourself doing the things that move you forward.
As I transitioned into an outside sales role, meaning I was on the road often, I adopted a regular routine that kept me busy and moving forward. It takes self discipline to be successful in this type of career because there are so many distractions along the way. I adopted a system where I planned my weeks in advance, and I reviewed my work day the night before to ensure it would be productive. Even to this day, I utilize having a daily routine to keep me on track to complete what needs to be done. Daily planners, whether digital or paper, can help keep track of your tasks and routine, so that distractions don’t take you off course. For me, I schedule things down to the hour with some time in between for travel or making calls. Create a routine that works for you and stick with it.
Conversely, how can one stop the negative stream of self-criticism that often accompanies us as we try to grow?
I attribute the majority of my success to consuming personal development and inspirational content daily. I seek out personalities on social media who appeal to me and help keep my negative self-criticism at bay. You don’t have to look far to find others who share helpful information that can keep your mindset where it needs to be. You just need to actually do it and do it often. This involves watching less television shows or streaming services and consuming life changing content or reading a good book that will benefit your mindset.
Are there any misconceptions about self-confidence and believing in oneself that you would like to dispel?
It’s important to not rely solely on having a belief system in place but to recognize that it’s just one of many components that will aid you in creating a better life for yourself. It should also be known that your belief system may fail at times, and that’s ok. What’s important is moving forward and continuing to maintain that belief system so it gets stronger day by day, helping you become a person of strength and conviction. Having self-confidence takes daily work and should never be assumed that it will just be in place for you.
What advice would you give to someone who is struggling with imposter syndrome?
The imposter syndrome is something that will present itself no matter how much you believe in yourself or how much success you’ve gained because it’s what it does. We can’t change it from showing its face. We are able to change how we handle this syndrome when it occurs by recognizing when it happens and applying the tips we learn on how to overcome it. Celebrating our successes, letting go of perfectionism, and reminding ourselves of how far we have come are all great ways to overcome the imposter syndrome. With practice it will become easier to overcome.
Ok, we are nearly done. You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good for the greatest number of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.
My idea for a movement is probably a small one, but it that probably would have a huge impact on others. While I don’t consider myself to be perfect, I would love to see more people put other people first-personally and professionally. Taking a moment to hold a door open for someone, checking on an elderly neighbor or helping them with a task, watching out for the safety of children, or applying the pay it forward method to someone who may need it that day, could all be ways to improve the world. These small gestures that show kindness towards others go a long way.
We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US, whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we both tag them :-)
I would love a sit down with the man behind the well known book and movie ‘The Pursuit Of Happyness’ Christopher Gardner. He shares a compelling true story of how everything in his life was stacked against him as he was raising a young boy and dealing with people around him doubting his ability as a man. Somehow, Christopher still stepped out of his comfort zone to create the life of success he has at the present moment. He cut through the self-doubt and fear he experienced on multiple occasions to stay on track towards a life he visualized in his mind. His story is inspiring and encouraging to others. Christopher really had nobody but himself to get through those hard times to face each challenge he was dealt. I just completed his book Permission To Dream that I recommend others read for further inspiration.
How can our readers further follow your work online?
I invite everyone to visit my website www.JasonGelios.com and connect with me on the following social media platforms.
Thank you for these really excellent insights, and we greatly appreciate the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success.
Thank you again for having me!
About The Interviewer: Savio P. Clemente coaches cancer survivors to overcome the confusion and gain the clarity needed to get busy living in mind, body, and spirit. He inspires health and wellness seekers to find meaning in the “why” and cultivate resilience in their mindset. Savio is a Board Certified Wellness Coach (NBC-HWC, ACC), #1 best-selling author, syndicated columnist, podcaster, stage 3 cancer survivor, and founder of The Human Resolve LLC. He has interviewed notable celebrities and TV personalities and has been featured on Fox News, The Wrap, and has worked with Authority Magazine, Thrive Global, BuzzFeed, Food Network, WW and Bloomberg. Savio has been invited to cover numerous industry events throughout the U.S. and abroad. His mission is to provide clients, listeners, and viewers alike with tangible takeaways on how to lead a truly healthy, wealthy, and wise lifestyle. Savio pens a weekly newsletter in which he delves into secrets to living smarter by feeding your “three brains” — head
, and gut
— in the hope of connecting the dots to those sticky parts of our nature that matter to living our best life.