‘If you believe you can or if you believe you can’t... you’re right.’
To believe - or to choose not to believe?
In computer terminology, the first seven years of a child’s life is the period when much of the information that will rule them as an adult is ‘inputted’. As a child you believe whole heartedly in the god-like infallibility of your parents and your teachers; their words become your truth and you are moulded by them. Your view of the world is formed by what they tell you, and by your personal experiences, good or bad. And because all of that is entirely individual, no two people will see the world the same.
Your beliefs will rule your thinking and your behaviour. Careless comments from parents or carers are downloaded into young children’s subconscious as ‘facts’ that then unconsciously shape the decisions and potential of those children throughout their lives.
If your experiences were happy ones, you may grow up with an inner strength and conviction that will carry you safely through the ups and downs that we all encounter in our lives. We all have filters set up from long ago that shade our perceptions. You may believe that the world is a safe place, while someone else will know absolutely that it is not.
If, for example, you were repeatedly told over many years that you are stupid, or ugly, or not very clever, that belief will become a fundamental part of your vision of yourself. You will probably be able to hear your parents voices in your head as you fail yet another exam (possibly just because you were expecting to), or lose another boyfriend, again because you just ‘knew’ you would. Did your school teacher tell you you would never amount to anything much? And his words still ring in your head as yet again your job application is rejected.
Black cat – good luck, bad luck? It’s entirely up to you!
Your belief systems are entirely real to you, but your perception of reality is actually only based on ideas you have created from your individual and personal interpretation of the meaning of a specific event. A black cat for instance can be perceived differently: to an Englishman it is a sign of remarkable luck - and he will go out of his way to wait for a black cat to cross the road in the sure knowledge it will bring him good fortune. To an Italian, however, a black cat is an omen of terrible misfortune to be avoided and evaded at all cost.
But just because you are afraid of that black cat does not necessarily mean there is a real danger... rather that you believe there is, based on your current knowledge and past experience.
We have learned to adopt other peoples ‘truth’ as our own – the beliefs of our parents and teachers, or the government, the television or the newspapers. Their perceptions, which may equally well be their own misperceptions, become hard wired as ‘our’ truth.
Change your beliefs
Have you noticed that ‘it’ - that difficult thing, whatever it is - always happens to you? Never to your friends or work colleagues, just always, time after time, to you. Is there something subliminal at work?
If you are not enjoying aspects of your life, sit down, pay attention and work out what your beliefs are in regard to that situation. Are your relationships failing because of things your father repeatedly said after he left your mother: 'All women are untrustworthy... Marriage is a trap...' so that however hard you want to make your own relationship work with your conscious mind, your subconscious mind steers you in another direction entirely. Set up long ago by the dictates of a child’s understanding, your subconscious is doing its best to keep you safe according to those underlying beliefs, but in fact it isn’t serving your best interests now as an adult; an adult that would choose to follow a different path from his father.
You are an adult, and yet through all of your life you act and feel according to those underlying childhood beliefs; you are run by those words. Your actions will continue to re affirm and perpetuate your beliefs, consciously or unconsciously. It all becomes a self-fulfilling circle. Until the point at which you look more carefully, recognise what is happening and take steps to change those beliefs.
And in changing your beliefs you will change what happens to you…it’s that simple.
How can you release yourself from long held beliefs?
To get your life back on track, find the negative beliefs that rule you and write them down. If you stop to consider, they will pop into your head, one after another - that you will never be good enough; that you are helpless; that no one likes you; that no one ever listens to you. Notice how many there are, and how many are linked to a fear of some kind. Where do they come from, and do you still need to hold on to them now? When you work out what the original trigger was you can choose whether to keep that belief or bin it. Does it serve you now in the life you want to have? Or does it hold you back?
Consciously examine each and every one of them. Even recognising that you are ruled by these negative beliefs is a major step forward on the road to releasing their control over you. Setting yourself free to travel in a different direction. Looking at the situation as an adult it is often hard to imagine that you have let yourself be ruled by your past for so many years; controlled by feelings you experienced as a child, that are not in any way relevant to who you are now, as a grown up.
‘Holding onto negative beliefs, and continually feeling fear uses up a lot of energy and is very draining. The important thing to realise is that your biology adapts to those beliefs. When we truly recognize that our beliefs are that powerful, we hold the key to freedom. Choosing to acknowledge what is holding you back, and letting them go can free vast amounts of energy for your system to heal itself physically. While we cannot readily change the codes of our genetic blueprints, we can change our minds.’
Beliefs become your reality – so be very careful in the beliefs you choose to hold. Choose life enhancing ones, not negative ones, and if you identify beliefs that do not support you, then change them – or wipe them out altogether.
Change the beliefs that rule you
“Your beliefs become your thoughts
“Your thoughts become your words
“Your words become your actions
“Your actions become your habits
“Your habits become your values
“Your values become your destiny”.
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Written by health advocate Sara Davenport, founder of one of the UK's leading breast cancer charities, Breast Cancer Haven. With over twenty years' experience in holistic health, Sara's digital dose of wellness teaches you to listen to your body, tweak your lifestyle and improve your health.
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