What if what you believe (the thoughts that guide your daily journey in life) are lies? What if they are distorted versions about yourself?
“Don’t Stop Believing. Hold on to that Feeling”
The lyrics of the popular song by Journey unfortunately provide the listener with some pretty bad advice – depending on what you are believing!
In fact, if your personal belief system is based on negative thoughts about yourself, then I suggest that you most certainly do not want to “hold on to that feeling.”
If I grow up believing that I have little worth or value, this thought will continue to guide me later in life through a lack of self-confidence. If I do not believe that I am capable of great things in my business or creative life, then I will more than likely sabotage any chance of success in those areas.
A negative set of beliefs can lead to:
– Self-doubt (“Who do I think I am”)
– Feelings of Inadequacy (“I’m just not enough to produce work that matters”)
– Powerlessness (“I’ll never achieve what I want”)
– Shame (“I’m not worth it”)
– Feeling like a fraud (“I’m going to be found out and rejected”)
Our beliefs and thoughts MUST be challenged and understood in order to avoid possible self-sabotage in the work that we do. We must always be on the lookout for the truth, and the lies, in what we tell ourselves.
Byron Katie’s amazing book, Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life, provides us with 4 questions that we must ask ourselves if we desire to keep our beliefs about who we are on the right track.
Question #1 – Is the thought true?
The first step is to honestly ask yourself, based on facts and not feelings, if the thoughts you are having about yourself are true. Although this can be a challenge at first, you can get better and better at asking yourself if what you are believing is 100% true or not. If it is not true, then the goal is to let it go. If you believe that the thought you are thinking is true, then go to the next step.
Question #2 – Can you absolutely know the thought is true?
In this step, Katie asks us to take another, really deep look at why the thought may be true. Is it possible that feelings that are connected to your thoughts are being confused with facts? Are you being absolutely honest in your evaluation of your thought? If, after taking this second, deeper look, you determine without a doubt that what you are thinking is true, move to step #3.
Question #3 – How do you react when you believe that thought?
If you have determined that the thought is true, take a look at what the thought actually does to you by asking questions such as, “Does this thought help me in achieving the life I desire? … Is this a thought worth keeping? … Would my life be better off if I let this thought go? … What is the value of this thought in my life?” If the answer is no to any of these questions, then begin to take whatever action is necessary in order to let the thought out of your life (including working with a Coach to help you move towards thoughts that are positive and productive)
Question #4 – Who would you be without that thought?
We so often confuse who we are with what we think or how we feel. The truth is that you are not doomed to live with thoughts that define yourself in a negative way! What would your business look like if you stopped defining your self with negative thinking. What kind of art or performance would you create if you began to replace your definition (or your ‘Story’) about yourself with an honest and positive one? What kind of relationships would you develop if your thoughts were based on a belief that you deserve great friendships and relationships in your life?
We do not come into the world with any thoughts already in place. We are without fear and have no preconceived beliefs about who we are. By asking yourself the above 4 questions you can begin to develop a new story based on what is true about yourself.
The great news is that you are NOT what you currently think. When your thoughts become affirming and positive, then it’s time to listen to the words of Journey and do not stop believing!
Question: If you could eliminate one destructive belief that holds you back, what would it be? Click on the comments box – I’d love to hear your thoughts!