28 Nov

How to change limiting beliefs

90% of the process of changing limiting, old outdated beliefs is cultivating awareness, so that we can distinguish the difference between what we’d like to believe, what we think we should believe and what we truly believe.

It has become clear to me that having had my own coaching and mentoring and also having coached others that we all have much to learn and gain from questioning and challenging our limiting beliefs and looking at how limiting beliefs hold us back.  Beliefs are often so unconscious that we seldom question them, with effective questioning, taking into account: when the belief was formed, whose belief it is and if that belief limits us or allows us to grow, we can question if the beliefs we hold are still appropriate for us.  Each of us has a choice and by choosing new empowering beliefs much can be changed in our lives for the better.  We can each take the untamed potential of a belief and create a new and unique worldview that drives everything that we do.

In order to change a limiting belief we need to change the internal representation we have of ourselves, about others and about the world around us, so that over time, our creative subconscious mind recognises our new representation as a new reality

Changing a belief takes time, by creating awareness about what we believe opens up new possibilities for change. If a limiting belief is based on a perception that is no longer true or someone else’s opinion then it is time to change the belief. The desire to change what we believe, by taking action will assist you in finding new goals that are specific, attainable and measurable. Challenging a limiting belief will have enormous benefits in the sense that self worth is improved, fear subsides, and there is a renewed sense of freedom and there is a willingness to take new risks.

Exercises to support you in changing your own limiting beliefs:

  • Create an inventory of your beliefs (I can’t, I must, I Mustn’t, I should, I ought to, I need to, I have to, it’s impossible to) especially ones you realise as being fearful. Observe and question in the best way that you can, what you have come to believe, with absolute honesty and release the beliefs that no longer serve you
  • Stop collecting evidence that supports the old belief, instead look for evidence that supports the new belief.  Access the positive intention in the new belief
  • Choose a belief and look at the rules that support it, break the rules and compare the outcome of the catastrophic prediction built into the rule.  It is often the thought of doing something that stops us from actually doing it.  The thought is worse than the actual outcome or action.  Only by testing, experimenting, and noticing what happens can you determine the truth of what you have believed for so long
  • Keep a diary or journal where you keep track of your painful feelings, the situations in which the feelings arise and the self talk that you give yourself that makes you feel unhappy.  By analyzing the your self talk, you can uncover your underlying core beliefs
  • Use positive affirmations to strengthen or change a belief
  • Once you notice a thread of thought, see if it’s something propelling you forward or something holding you back.  Most of the non-stop dialogue running through our minds is not logical or necessary   thinking.  It is the voice of everything that we believe
  • Identify 3 of your own limiting beliefs, select the references that make these beliefs true for you, decide now what you want to believe instead and write the new belief in positive terms and use these statements to replace the equivalent old limiting belief
  • When you are aware that you are thinking or behaving in a way that limits you, and you identify that this is an old repetitive thought, replace the negative thought with a positive thought
  • Be aware that the words in our heads create thoughts, the thoughts create feelings , the  feelings create actions and actions create results (based on Law of Attraction principles)
  •  Ask yourself how well the limiting beliefs serve you and be aware that you have the choice to change your thinking and or behaviour in response to something that triggers a limiting belief
  • When you are aware of the negative thoughts you can imagine the following words or say them in your head or out loud:’ Erase that thought’, ‘ stop’, ‘enough’
  • Use ‘The Works’ by Byron Katie, Principles of questioning: Is it true? Is it absolutely true? , How do I react when I think that thought? Who would I be/feel without that thought?
  • Scripting (write out longhand an alternative situation to the belief in detail) write out what you would like instead of the current situation.  Fill the script with a description of positive thoughts and feelings.  The more often you write and re-read the script the more it becomes a new and empowering belief.  Date your script a year from now and script your beliefs as if they have already happened

What’s the cost of holding on to your limiting beliefs?

In tomorrow’s blog I will be posing some questions to further aid you in questioning your own limiting beliefs