I’m sure we have all made 101 poor decisions! Many of them don’t really matter. The limiting beliefs that should concern us though, are those that prevent us from achieving our goals and desires……. For example, if I had held the limiting belief that I was a rubbish driver and trainer, I’d be toast!
Beliefs are thoughts and assumptions we have, about ourselves and the world around us, that we hold onto as absolute truths. They are emotional, psychological and often completely irrational. They are formed through our experiences and interactions with the world and the people around us. If they are ‘limiting’ they often hold us back from achieving our dreams and to our potential. Many of these beliefs were formed and accumulated throughout our childhood. We picked them up through our interactions with others – like when we were scolded for doing something wrong or not doing something the way our parents expected us to. A common resulting belief is ‘I’m not good enough‘, which can then grow into bigger, deeper beliefs that affect us during adulthood.
I could go on for hours, listing the distorted beliefs I have had about myself over the years. It is something I watch for consciously these days and have chosen to change about myself, following a self-development course where I finally acknowledged them. They included:
- All men are cruel and not to be trusted!!!!
- I do not deserve any better.
- I have to work hard to be successful: working long hours with no time for relaxation or a social life.
- I am not a good trainer. They’re going to find out really soon that this is true and I’ll fall flat on my face!
I can speak from personal experience that unlearning these beliefs has served me well and I’ve been surprised sometimes when I’ve discovered the decent me that was inside. It’s changed much of what I think of me, but also helped me find work that truly fits who I am.
Here are some of the common beliefs I come across almost everyday supporting highly anxious drivers, ‘I’m not smart enough’, ‘I’m too nervous’, ‘I am too old, it’s too late to start’ or ‘I’m pretty much doomed, I don’t have good luck!’
It’s often important to dig deep into memories from the past to find the triggers that brought them to this conclusion. The events identified aren’t responsible on there own for the belief though, because nothing has any meaning, unless we give it meaning.
This was a light-bulb moment for me! It changed me completely, because I can label the source and stop it in its tracks…….. and it often helps me to help others!