We form these mindsets around many topics or areas.
- For the elephant, the mindset is: “I am small, weak, and stuck in this place.”
- For me, the mindset was: “I am not worthy and do not deserve to be treated well.”
How does this happen?
- Since our minds cannot handle infinite possibilities, we create our own realities with finite thoughts.
- Unconsciously, we take the whole realm of possibilities, break it into pieces, and select a handful of pieces.
- We put these pieces together in a certain way within our minds to create our “mental model.”
- We expend energy day and night to make the world fit this model. We label everything that doesn’t fit as wrong, bad, or unfair.
- If we want to go beyond the model, we must risk questioning it. We must no longer believe it to be valid.
As you begin to question and even stop doing some of the automatic things, you will experience some discomfort.
- Become curious as to why that is. Yes, I am encouraging you to step out of your comfort zone.
- As you step out into the unknown, you will begin to see the walls you have built and the limits you have put on yourself.
- Seeing this will begin to reveal the repetitive loop of behaviors and thinking. You will see what leads you into a pattern of living from the unresolved hurt of the past.
Let me share a little more of my personal story to explain how my unhealthy mindset was formed. It will also show how the unhealthy patterns I had to consciously identify and work to reset.
- I grew up in a family that experienced a great deal of trauma and tragedy.
- Grandparents killed by a drunk driver, uncles dying in their early 30s having battled cancer, and a cousin dying in her teens.
- So, when I was sexually abused around age five, no one intervened. It could be that no one knew. It could be that it was one more thing and they couldn’t deal with it.
- My child-mind created the mindset that I was not worthy of intervention.
This limiting belief was reinforced over time.
I found ways of coping. Some were healthy and others were not.
Unfortunately, my limiting beliefs and mindset came into play even when I didn’t realize it. I married an abusive man because I felt fortunate he chose me despite signs of his darker side. I wasn’t worthy of being treated better.
It took years for me to claim my worthiness.
- I had to recognize the patterns and the underlying mindset.
- I had to do the hard work of addressing the pain that led to the mindset.
- I needed to surround myself with others who would reinforce the new mindset: I am worthy!
In our January 15th blog, we will begin to examine what mindsets became ingrained in you and how you can begin to claim a new mindset.