The Prison of Limiting Beliefs

Changes in one’s train of thought produce corresponding changes in one’s conception of the external world….

As a thing is viewed, so it appears.
To see things as a multiplicity, and so to cleave unto separateness, is to err.
–Padmasambhava

We could have just about anything we want if something wasn’t blocking us. Many of us often face obstacles that keep us from achieving our goals and living our ideal life. The bulk of these obstacles are without foundation, substance, and lack any real existence. They are mental constructs that you impose upon yourself with your imagination and cultural agreements. Many of these obstacles are known as limiting beliefs.

All behavior stems from belief. A limiting belief is behavior that limits our empowerment and prevents us from achieving our goals. Some examples of limiting beliefs are: “I can’t make enough money”, “I’m not good enough to do X”, “I’m not smart enough”, “I don’t deserve to be successful”, or “I must/have to do Y”.

Limiting beliefs do not come from a state of choice, they’re restrictive, often unconscious and as such don’t encourage mindfulness or personal growth. They keep us stuck, unhappy, and burdened. They’re just ugly.

Here are 3 simple steps to change limiting beliefs:

Consciousness: The first step in changing a belief is knowing it’s there. Recognize it for what it is. Look into and at it. See why it’s there. What is it getting you and do you still want what you’re getting from it? Where did it come from? Do you still want to hold on to it?

Language: Changing your language will change the structure of the belief. Instead of saying “I can’t make enough money” say “I can make enough money. I AM making enough money. I am so dang successful I don’t know what to do with myself!” Rather than saying, “I must/have to/should/need to do X or Y”, say “I want to/it would be fun to do X or Y.” This brings choicefulness back into the picture. There’s ultimately nothing we have to or must do. It’s always a choice. What would happen if you didn’t do X? Often, nothing at all and sometimes, something with a negative consequence. Reframe it all in a way so it speaks to your choicefulness and passions. Instead of saying “I have to go running today,” say, “I want to go running today because I enjoy the feelings of health and vitality it brings.” Instead of focusing on the negative consequences you would get from doing something that needs done, focus on the positive. “I have to pay may taxes” becomes “I made a lot of money this year so I get to pay taxes and help the country out, woohoo!” (Yeah, maybe that’s being just a little too idealistic, but you get the point).

Internal Representations: Changing internal representations, or how we mentally see ourselves, also has a powerful effect. Limiting beliefs invoke negative internal representations. Negative internal representation fuel limiting beliefs. Change them from unresourceful to resourceful. Give yourself representations that are powerful and positive. Put yourself in those states. See and feel yourself making money, being choiceful, healthy, more conscious or whatever you want to change and you will change your actions accordingly. Remember that whatever is in our mind influences your reality. Stop believing you’re a limited person with limited choices and you’ll become freer, more successful, and more powerful.


Originally published at www.scottgoolsby.com.

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