Change limiting beliefs to more empowering ones and transform your life
I read a really good article on facebook this week entitled ‘What you Think is as Important as What you Eat’
I’ve known for a long time that what I think makes a difference to my life and that some thoughts held me back, whilst others propelled me forwards. The challenge was noticing them, catching them and finding a way to work with them. I didn’t get off to a good start, because as soon as I became aware of some of my limiting beliefs and how they had influenced my life I wanted to ‘get rid of them’. I hadn’t bargained for the inner energy that would fight hard to prevent me from removing the beliefs from my psyche. And so at the beginning my internal dialogue represented something like a ‘war zone’ or ‘battlefield’.
During my coaching training I learned where my beliefs had originated and how they had been shaped throughout my life. I also learned that the behaviors that were attached to these beliefs actually kept me safe at some point in my life and that is why my body was so resistant to ‘letting go’. What I really needed to do was to be grateful for their presence, ‘let them be’ and have them available for times when I still might need them.
As I began to process and recognized how some of my beliefs had held meback I didn’t want to think about them. I didn’t want to acknowledge howmany hours of fun I had missed out on because I was ‘too scared in new social environments’, ‘frightened to say what I really wanted’, ‘afraid to say no’, ‘worried that I would make a mistake or make a fool of myself’. When I did think about the effect on my life I felt a huge sadness which I wanted to
‘push down’. It wasn’t until I started reading the books of Linda Kohanov and Karla McLaren that I realized that it was normal to feel sadness when something was about to change, even when it was for the better. To move on, what I actually needed was to embrace the sadness, acknowledge what I had missed or lost and then connect with the new opportunities.
So I began to list beliefs that I wanted to change and move beyond. I looked for new beliefs. But I hit another barrier. The ‘fake it until you make it’ challenge. I tried to replace ‘I’m not confident going into a new social environment’ with ‘I am confident going into a new social environment’. In reality I felt more terrified with the new belief than I had been with the old one!
Then I came across the book ‘Ask and It is Given’ written by Esther and Jerry Hicks, The Teachings of Abraham and I learned that it was important to choose a new belief which actually made me feel good. So I came up with ‘It takes time to become confident in a new social environment and I’m getting better each time’. Then I felt calmer.
I’ve read hundreds of personal development books and tried lots of approaches to help me transform my limiting beliefs into more empowering ones. In the end I had to create my own. The approach that I’ve created works for me because it incorporates the mind, body, emotions and spirit and supports me on all levels. I’ll share it with you here.
How do I know that I have a ‘limiting belief’? I don’t feel good!
- What feeling do I notice in my body?
A knot in the stomach
- What is the limiting belief?
I’m not confident in new social environments
- Where did it come from?
I had limited social interactions in my childhood and when I did go into new social environments I was encouraged to step out on my own (because I always seemed such a confident little girl!)
- How has this belief been of value?
It has stopped me from going into too many new social environments and becoming overwhelmed. It has prevented me from having to feel my vulnerability.
- Is it really true?
- What behavior do I repeat when I hold this?
I turned down invitations to social belief and how has it limited me?gatherings and parties and made up excuses not to go. Or I pushed myself to go and often became overwhelmed and I could not stay present and truly engage in conversation. Lots of missed opportunities for fun and social engagement.
- What can I do differently?
Start by accepting invitations from friends to go to events with a small number of people. Gradually build up my social network. Practise going to social gatherings on a regular basis.
- What is my new and empowering belief?
It takes time to become confident in a new social environment and I’m getting better each time. I now look forward to meeting and engaging with new people and allow myself the time I need to build new relationships. ‘I have more confidence than I realized.’
9.What feeling do I notice in my body now?
I breath a big sigh and my stomach feels relaxed and calm. How do I know that this belief is empowering? It feels good!
I hope that this has helped you in some way, at the same time I would encourage you to find your own way of moving through change. If you want to read more evidence to support the theory that what you think makes a different to your life then here is a link to the article that I mentioned in my opening sentence. http://upliftconnect.com/what-you-think-is-important/