The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their own dreams.
If you want to know what a person’s dominant beliefs are, look at the conditions in their life. We’ve all seen the person on daytime TV who is totally broke, in danger of losing another job and their life is one disaster after another. We also know people who are being promoted, traveling to beautiful places or retiring in Hawaii. Successful people seem to become more successful and unhappy people seem to remain unhappy because bad things just keep happening to them. But are they really victims of a cold, cruel world or simply suffering from a case of mistaken personal identity?
Beliefs are ideas that we repeat over and over again, hold on to and give emotional energy to. You can believe something that is clearly not true but can fool your mind into believing it is. An extreme example is the bone-thin anorexic who looks in the mirror and sees a fat person. Sadly, anorexia is the result of a cold, cruel and uncompassionate belief system.
From the time you were a small child, beliefs have been programmed into your mind through the process of you accepting certain ideas as true, thereby giving sanction to them and making them your own. Your grandmother might have said how beautiful you were and you chose to believe her. Or you could have chosen to believe the 3rd grade boy you had a crush on, who told you how stupid, fat and ugly you were. Your perception of self was formed depending on what ideas you repeatedly gave emotional energy to and chose to believe.
Undo the Beliefs that Don’t Serve You
The good news is, this can all be undone if you’ve done a number on yourself by choosing to believe the bad stuff. You can replace hurtful, deeply held beliefs such as “I’m not good enough” with far more loving and supportive ideas such as “I am worthy and deserve a good life.” It will take time and practice, and you may need professional help — some of our ideas have become deeply imbedded beliefs — but you can greatly improve your conditions by giving positive emotional energy to better ideas. The longer you hold onto these new ideas, with acceptance, the more they become solidly true beliefs for you. As you gradually transform your beliefs into loving ones, your life starts to change and improve too. Then, it becomes even easier to believe the new.
Progress can seem painfully slow. I am still undoing the beliefs I gave a lot of energy to as a young person. As soon as I think I’ve mastered them, more opportunities show up that allow me to uncover yet another buried layer. Undoing hurtful beliefs is like peeling the layers of an onion back, and we get closer to the core with every effort. Your life may tend to circle back to certain beliefs when you’re ready so you can tend to them again; and as frustrating as that can be, you are never really in the same place. You are further along even if it doesn’t seem that way, and you can look at these old beliefs from the new vantage point of who you are now. As the saying goes, “You can never step into the same river twice” so don’t despair, you are making progress.
I’ve had to learn how to take it in and soak it up when my clients have said, “Christen, you’re a great coach and you’ve helped me so much.” Somewhere along the line I started to down-play my need for affection and praise. If I were to guess the belief I’ve had to undo it would be this, “Being anything less than perfect isn’t okay so no need to thank me, it’s just expected.” True, my perfectionism has helped me in some ways but has hurt me in others. Our beliefs are usually a mixed bag so we need to stay aware of when they’re serving us and when they clearly are not. In my case, I’ve needed to use perfectionism wisely, keeping enough of it to enjoy my high standards while learning to drop it so I can relax, have fun and not beat myself up at the same time.
My Garden Analogy
Here’s another way to look at this concept: your beliefs are like seeds that have been planted in the fertile ground of your unlimited mind. The energy you give them equates to the vital water and sunlight they need to grow. We each have a combination of firmly planted beliefs that both support and hurt us. If you’ve said time after time, “I’m fat and ugly!” you’ve probably produced this in your life. Some of us have been stuck in the middle of this garden until we’ve said, “This isn’t true for me anymore. I’m ready to be different. I’m vibrant and healthy now.” As you plant these new ideas, your mind will begin to grow them in your life until they become a reality. You’ll also find yourself making better decision and acting upon better choices. You can choose either way, healthy or unhealthy, and you’ll produce either experience. This can be a fantastic and exciting prospect, especially if choose your ideas wisely.
Don’t Confuse Present Day Circumstances with Future Results
Desired results take time. Some take a lot longer than you hoped for when you were wide-eyed with excitement. Don’t worry. Whatever you do, don’t confuse present circumstances with future results. This will only help you succeed in creating more defeatist beliefs. If you assign a lot of importance to these beliefs, you’ll continue to grow more of the same. The seeds you sow now will reap rewards in the future. Tend the garden well by keeping the weeds of negativity out before they take root and grow out of control. Or simply let those weeds dry up by refusing to give them attention and care. Keep working in the garden of your choice and don’t rip out the seeds in your impatience. Keep gardening (stay in action) to demonstrate your belief in the process. Have faith that just like in a real garden, those good seeds will take hold, shoot past the surface of the soil one day, grow stems, branches, and then later produce fruit.
Principle of Belief -– If you believe it, it becomes real
Tips: It’s important to undo the negative beliefs that have been programmed into your mind in order for you to grow more of the positive. How can good things take root in a field overgrown with weeds? You can just as easily plant uplifting ideas as those that pull you down. And what you sow, you shall reap. Why then, would you not plant and tend to the positive?
Question: What seeds of believe are you planting, tending to and supporting with the vital water and sunlight of your attention?
Affirm: “I can do, be and have whatever I desire.”
Try This: Consider your life to be fertile ground. You can cultivate anything you want there!
Today, look around and see what you have created with your beliefs. If you don’t like your results and want them to be different, then you must be different. It’s okay if you feel awkward or ineffectual at first. Keep practicing. You beliefs influence your actions, but your actions influence your beliefs too. In fact, action is a great way to undo old, worn-out beliefs. For example, if you believe, “I’m not good at trying new things,” but you try something new anyway, you might find a sense of confidence that you didn’t know you had. This begins to build the new belief, “Maybe I can try something new because I just did!” You see, you can’t wait to feel confident first because you might never get started.
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Copyright 2006 Christen Murphy Resmo, Benchmark Coaching, Inc. All rights in all media reserved