Beliefs are powerful
Can beliefs be changed?
There is no doubt that beliefs can be very powerful and beliefs can help or hinder you, what you experience and how you experience life, who you are being and what you give and what you get.
Here’s the thing about beliefs, most of them we are not even aware of (we are unconscious), they are operating at the level of the subconscious.
But, even though we are largely unconscious of our beliefs, they inform and generally dictate what we do, what we can ultimately have, achieve, acquire and who we are being.
Just because you might have goals or shout out to the world that you will do this or do that, have this or have that, doesn’t necessarily mean it is going to happen or it might but you will soon self-sabotage if your beliefs don’t align.
To really understand the hold they have over us, albeit unconsciously, let’s take a look at where they come from and how they can be changed.
How and when beliefs are formed
Most beliefs about who we are, what we are and what we can do, be and have are acquired at a young age.
They are the messages that we have been told about ourselves whether good or bad, healthy or unhealthy, resourceful or unresourceful.
They can also be acquired through what we observe around us, that is, our points of reference.
Now, if we are receiving positive messages well that’s great, but what if we’re not?
Unfortunately, as we are quite young when we are told these things about who we are, we don’t yet have the cognitive ability to question whether it’s the truth or critically analyse what is being said.
That means, we accept it and integrate it into who we are. We believe it. Then we live it. They become part of our story and we don’t even question the truth of the stories we’ve been told.
Now, if those messages aren’t positive, this can be extremely damaging not to mention limiting in what we can accomplish and how we experience life.
Likewise, when we are young, we observe, we are like sponges, we watch those around us, what they are doing and how they do it, what they are achieving or not, what they have or don’t have and we listen to their language, how they view the world, their opinions, we hear their beliefs spoken and they become ours. They are our point of reference, again whether good or not so good.
So, what do we do with that? Read on!
Unconsciously going about life
The critical point here is that most of the time we aren’t aware of our beliefs, we might think we are, but we’re not or it’s only to a point. We are largely unaware or unconscious.
If you want to change some aspect of your life or all, then you need to start being a ‘belief hunter’.
And, you will have beliefs about every area of your life – relationships, finances, career, health. You name it, there will be a belief around it.
This means becoming conscious.
Let me share with you how to become conscious.
Take a look at your life if you’re game
To know whether or not your beliefs are serving you, you just need to look around you at your life, your experiences, your results and how you feel about it.
What we do, who we are being and what we have is reflected back at us. It’s feedback!
Are there areas of your life that aren’t working, have never really worked or work for a time and then collapse (self-sabotage).
If so, then I would suggest that regardless of what you say you want or will do or will achieve, your beliefs don’t align.
Let me give you an example of what I mean by alignment:
A client might say to me that he wants to earn $250,000 per year. But, he is unlikely to achieve this (or almost get there and then back off or get there and do something that brings him back to where he was) if he has beliefs around money that don’t align with that. For instance, his underlying beliefs might be that:
- There is never enough money
- Money doesn’t grow on trees
- Most people just earn an average wage (and I would bet you he thinks he is one of them)
These beliefs clearly need to change and align with the desire. But how?
Start to belief hunt
If not, then you need to start to belief hunt.
As I said, you can have a multitude of beliefs around every area of your life e.g. career, money, health, relationships.
Pick an area that you want to improve and start to write down your beliefs around them.
Start with two columns and include those that serve you (are positive in nature) and those that don’t (are negative in nature) and start to re-frame.
See the following section on re-framing.
What do I mean by re-frame?
So, if for example you have a belief that I will never earn enough money to buy my own house, then you would need to change the belief to one that serves you e.g. I earn enough money to buy my own home and investment properties too (why not!).
When you start to really look at your beliefs, you will start to notice that they are often inter-twined, for example, you might want to be a millionaire, but you might have beliefs that most people don’t become millionaires (so that includes you) and you might also have a belief that you’re not smart enough.
So, you can see here that there are beliefs about money and the possibilities for you and who you are as a person.
Therefore, when you belief hunt you will see the inter-connectedness of beliefs across your life. If you have a belief in one area it can colour other areas of your life too.
And, you might have beliefs that are mutually opposed or conflicting, for example, you might say that you really like being in a relationship, but you might also have a belief that love is painful or hurts or ends in disaster or that most relationships don’t last or end in divorce. What do you think your experience of relationships would be with these beliefs?
What if I can’t identify my beliefs?
If you’re not sure of your beliefs after doing the exercise above, it could possibly be fear of change kicking in, resistance to change or you just have a block to accessing a defining moment in your life where that belief was formed. It may be that it’s just too painful and the self-protection mechanism is kicking in. That’s ok.
Fortunately, it’s not absolutely necessary to identify the defining moment when a belief was formed or have clear language around it.
The key is to create a belief that will serve you.
So, if you can’t identify your beliefs for whatever reason, write down the area of your life that you want to see an improvement in and just list a whole lot of positively worded beliefs around that. It’s all only language.
Beliefs are just thoughts – thank goodness!
Yes, beliefs can be powerful, but on the other hand they are just thoughts and we have ultimate control over our minds if we choose. Remember that going forward.
Know that you have the power to change your life, so choose empowering beliefs.
Fake it till you make it!
So, can beliefs be changed? Absolutely and what a relief that is!
Don’t be held back any longer by the unconsciously spoken words of anyone from long ago or even now. Equally don’t buy into your own negative deprecating self-talk. Don’t be a slave to that – this is your life and the possibilities are endless.
If you have been detrimentally affected by others in the past, know that it is quite possible that they had some pretty horrible messages given to them that they believed and are unconsciously operating from.
As cliché as it may be, remember that no-one has the power to make us feel anything unless we allow them to and it’s time that we toss aside anything that does not serve us.
Finally, whether it’s the truth or not is neither here nor there, if a belief doesn’t serve you, ditch it.
If you can’t integrate your new beliefs yet, just fake it till you make it and make believe!
Realise your pure potential.
For more mindset tips and strategies make sure you:
- Read my article How to be successful in life – 10 things you must know!
- Read my recommended list of the Top 10 Books on How to Change your Life!
- Subscribe to my website so you don’t miss out on more articles on success and transforming your life.
I hope you have found this article of value. I would love your comments or questions. Just drop them below.
Until next time, go forth with ease and just be!