THOUGHTS OR LIMITING BELIEFS
Updated: Oct 19, 2020
Written by Lynley Evans, Resilience Coach
Do you accept all your thoughts as beliefs?
We all have thoughts that come into our mind from one minute to the next. It is part of life.
However, some of them we let float through, but some of them we take on board. We make these into our beliefs, developing our belief system. But really do we need to do this, as some of these new beliefs are quite limiting. And we do become what we believe.
Now, if I was to say to myself that I cannot achieve something, for instance, writing this article, then I would not be able to do it, however, if my belief system tells me that I can do it, I will surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it in the beginning.
So, as we become more honest with ourselves, we start to realize that there are a number of things we believe are actually not true and beliefs are not facts.
So, what are beliefs? They are an acceptance that something exists or is true, especially without proof. A belief is a state of mind in which a person thinks something to be the case, with or without there being empirical evidence to prove that something is the case with factual certainty.
So now, what are limiting beliefs – well they are something that you believe to be true that limits you in some way. It could be about you, other people, or the world. And it may hold you back from making different choices in your life; keep you from seeing the different opportunities presented to you each day; prevent you from seeing your gifts or accepting the gifts offered to you, or keep you stuck focussing on the negative aspects of your circumstances.
However, they give us one huge challenge, in that most of us don’t think we have them and they can be hard to spot. So, where do they come from? They come from many places, including family members, teachers, coaches, media, society, and culture. They are formed by repeated thoughts and are mostly created in our childhood from interactions with people around us.
As children’s brains are not fully developed, they can take on many limiting beliefs from their immediate environment as they do not know the difference between what is real and what is not. For example, a situation may have occurred in childhood, the interpretation of the situation was made, which led to making meaning, that leads to a thought, and that person then believed that thought (whether it was true or not). They kept thinking it as other similar situations occurred over time, and subsequently, it became a belief.
Nothing binds you except your thoughts; nothing limits you except your fear, and nothing controls you except your beliefs.