Are Your Personal Beliefs Holding You Back?

I used to believe that I wasn't worth following my dreams, or reaching for something that I really wanted in life. If you've followed me for very long, you probably already know that my teen years weren't the best. You probably already know that, when my Mom and I lived with my grandmother, there was a lot of tension. And you probably know that I was told - by my grandmother - on a near-regular basis how worthless I was, and how I'd never be anything.

A lot of people deal with things like that. It's a lot more common than most people realize. And supporting each other in working through that, and forming new beliefs by choice for ourselves, is how we get to a place of fulfillment, passion, and purpose.

Your beliefs about yourself and your life have more power over your existence than you can imagine. Personal ideas and values you've held for a long time can block the way toward a life you desire. Getting past those blocks requires identifying beliefs that no longer serve you, and replacing them with beliefs you choose for yourself.

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"I ought to let go of my dreams because I'm unable to achieve them."

A couple of unhelpful things happen when you think this way. First, it seems you may feel undeserving of the dreams you have and are, therefore, sabotaging yourself. Second, you're likely not doing anything to move closer to how you want to live.

One way to alter this belief is to ponder how to follow your dreams. Make a list of the steps required to achieve the life you crave. Look at them as stair steps. Then, begin "climbing" those steps toward your future, one by one.

Your new belief might sound something like, "I'm following my dreams starting today and will celebrate each step I achieve along the way."

"I don't have the right to ask for what I want because they'll just say 'no.'"

This belief indicates you feel less important than others. You see your wants and needs as not relevant to others. Living with this belief means you likely keep your true feelings under wraps and simply go along to get along with others. There'll be no rocking the boat from you.

The fact is that your feelings are equally as valuable as everyone else's. Consider changing this belief to, "I am important and how I feel matters to me. I can diplomatically ask for what I want. Others may disagree, but I can handle it."

When you can state you wants or needs tactfully and honestly without anger, those close to you will probably listen well and respond to them.

However, if they have a negative response, remind yourself that you have no control over the feelings of others.

You do have control over your own feelings and actions. Therefore, ask for what you want. Recognize that you can listen to others' responses, but you're not responsible for how they feel.

"I'm not going to trust anyone again."

This belief may stem from a time in your past when someone you trusted hurt you.

Perhaps, when you were a youngster, your parents were unsupportive or tough on you. Or in a prior close relationship, you felt betrayed or that your feelings were minimized. Whatever the case, it sounds like you're afraid to trust and you're trying to protect yourself from further emotional hurt.

Alter this belief by giving yourself permission to trust. If you pledge not to trust again, it likely means you'll not have another loving relationship.

Recognize that you probably learned something positive from the prior relationship. You've grown and your ideas about what you want are clearer now.

You can adopt a belief something like, "In order to have a relationship, I must invest in it. It may be scary at first, but I can do it."

"I don't make enough money to live a financially secure life."

Or the alternative to that is, "I don't make enough money to do what I really want to do."​​

This belief puts a heavy cloak over your efforts to be happy. When you think this way, you fail to see what you can do to save for your future. Your emotional health is intimately connected to how you feel about your financial life.

Open the door to a more secure financial and emotional life by adjusting your belief to, "I have control over my finances. I live abundantly. All my needs are met, and I have enough left over for my desires and dreams."

When you believe you can live within or below your financial means and still save, you'll discover you can enjoy your life.

It took me quite a long while to break this lack mindset. And you want to know what really did it for me? Buying a budgeting software, and learning how to use it, changed my relationship with money. (If you aren't using a budgeting software of some kind, I totally recommend YNAB.com, and their training videos. That's how I got to where I'm at now, and it is powerful stuff.)

Perform a thorough self-examination of your major beliefs and values. What do you think about yourself? What is your self-talk like? What are the statement you tell yourself every day? I know this is not an easy process, but it's necessary to detach, and become the witness of your thoughts, rather than letting your thoughts consume and direct you. Are your thoughts and beliefs preventing you from achieving a healthy relationship, establishing monetary security, or living the dream life you yearn for?

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