Most of us don’t create our beliefs consciously, our mind simply draws conclusions from the past.
The roots of our problems as well as our victories grow from the love our beliefs. No matter what the problem is, it can be resolved and each of us can do on our own. It requires a courage to separate ourselves from our mind. In other words, we need to understand the fact that our beliefs are not who we are. This is the most important and at the same time the most difficult task.
What we know 'for sure' often doesn’t represent neither the 'truth' nor our conscious choice, in many cases it is not even something useful for us.
A human being is a clean sheet of paper and the first part of his life is not written by himself.
We come to this world with a clean sheet of our own life story which describes not only our experience (what we do), but also who we are (what we feel, think and base our decisions on). The interesting thing is that our first records are created by our parents, teachers, friends, our environment and our immature child’s mind.
From the very beginning we start being and acting based on the image created of us by others and the way we understand it. Then we acquire it as our identity.
In a way these are the rules of the game: we come to this world as kids with no idea about it and our task is to grow, learn and become aware individuals.
We create ourselves and our experience every day, every second and every moment. Not only when we decide to set the goals for the year ahead or change the job, country or have a baby. Not when we officially become adults at 21 or graduate from the university. We create ourselves at 15 years old (remember your complexes), at 7 years old (remember your fears), at 3 years old (remember yourself). We are constantly creating ourselves … from the very beginning. The majority of what we have created is stored in our sub-consciousness and manifests according to the situation.
Most of what we believe in are the patterns created by the people around us. If we can look at this fact without a fear to lose our identity, many things will become clear to us.
A lot of such beliefs relate to our ideas of relationship. We may think that we are worthy or not worthy of love, we create assumptions about the way our romantic partners should be including our expectations of them, finally the idea of love itself is a construct of our experiences as children, teenagers and later adults. To illustrate this just think of the concept of a relationship or marriage in different parts of the world.
To continue with this idea, what we should really focus on is our personal improvement and growth—our children will simply mirror the way we are. If we are in a harmonious relationship with ourselves, our partner and other people, our children will acquire this model and will be able to recreate it in their own lives.
Cultural diversity in the world is another illustration that our thoughts, beliefs and desires are the product of our environment. At least till we are mature enough to start choosing our own values, set goals and priorities, plan how to achieve them and create our principles. This is the most important and at the same time the most difficult thing.
All we know are based on the patterns of our perception: most of that we like is imposed on us (by our parents, friends, television, society, etc.), everything that our body wants is merely a habit which can be changed.
What really matters is if your beliefs help you or drag you down, if you live the life you want to have or carry a burden on your shoulders.
How to work with your beliefs and resolve your problems:
1. You are NOT what you believe in. This is the starting point: to understand that any belief can be changed, allow a thought that some of your beliefs can be limiting.
We think that we are normal because everybody does it and everybody can not be wrong. They can, it is a fact.
2. Recognize inspiring and limiting beliefs. There are just two types of beliefs: those which help us and those which drag us down. It is easy to identify the areas of your life in which you have unhelpful beliefs—these are the areas which are not working well.
We need to understand that the majority of our beliefs are generalizations based on our past experiences and the way we interpret painful and unpleasant events. The problem is that most of us don’t create our beliefs consciously, our mind simply draws conclusions from our past. Once these conclusions become our beliefs we forget that this is just our interpretation of our experience, but not the 'truth'.
3. Nurture helpful beliefs. It’s not so easy to change or discard any unhelpful beliefs even after you identify them as unhelpful. They are rooted deep inside our sub-consciousness and manifest as our responses to different events. However, what we can do is to plant helpful beliefs, act according to them and consequently change our behavioral patterns.
Few examples of working with limiting or unhelpful beliefs:
—Find the examples of people who have resolved the same or similar problem that you have. This will create confidence that your problem can be solved and there are real and specific examples of how it can be done. The logic is: if someone could do it, I can do it too.
—Work with helpful beliefs through visualization and affirmation techniques to consolidate them on subconscious level. Repeat "I can", "everything will work out", "I will resolve this" calmly and with confidence so it becomes a norm for your mind.
—Act. Your beliefs will not change without action and result. Start acting even with small steps. Actions are the only real test and proof for your mind.
The process of working with your new conscious beliefs—the ones you consciously chose to believe in—is a process of the cultivation of your new understanding of the world and improving your life. It will be functional only if you continuously exercise it until you create a new solid foundation of your personal power. It takes time and efforts but it is worth it.