February is the month of love, or at least it holds the thought of Valentine’s Day. My hope for you is that you can show one of the most important people in your life that you love them: YOU! So many times, we have ourselves at the bottom of the list when we seek to support and nurture people. I encourage you this month to do some things that are self-nurturing.
To encourage this, we pick up from last month’s blog with our exploration of unhealthy mindsets. In some ways they can become walls of thinking we build up that limit us until we look at them and challenge them. In his book, The Unteathered Soul, author Michael Singer says, “If you spend some time observing this mental voice, the first thing you will notice is that it never shuts up.” He calls this voice “your inner roommate” and goes on to say that if it were an actual roommate you would have kicked him out long ago.
Did you do last month’s exercise and take time to think about what unhealthy mindsets might exist for you? This would be that negative inner voice that keeps you from a thriving life. Being able to see and hear the unhealthy mindsets is a first, huge step. Once we name them, we can then see how they affect our thoughts and attitudes; and ultimately our actions and behaviors.
This is where the interesting work really begins and ultimately how you can find freedom. As you look at some of your core beliefs and messages, you identify which ones are not true or are not helpful.
Let me give you a fun example of how a core belief can influence decisions and interactions. I have shared how I always tried to be a “good girl.” This meant that I tried to follow the rules. Imagine me driving down a road and coming upon a “left lane ends, merge right” sign. Well, of course I follow the rules and merge. The right lane begins to back up with all the other people who are following the sign’s direction. Next a car comes racing down the left lane passing all the cars that obediently followed the sign a half mile back. My core belief then turns into a thought and attitude of, “I can’t believe that they didn’t merge. Do they think they are above the rules?” This then leads me to the action and behavior of getting closer to the car in front of me so that no one can “break in line.” This is not the most favorable description of myself, but I am sure you have seen it happen or maybe have even done it yourself.
The work is to think about what core beliefs are strong for you and how they drive your behavior. Look particularly at those core beliefs that don’t lead you to be the person you want to be. I want to be a gracious and kind person, but you wouldn’t see that in my actions as I nudge out the line breaker.
We form these core beliefs around a number of topics or areas. They could be achievement, independence, growth, family, communication, quality, compassion, loyalty, money, competence, risk taking, competition, nurturing, hard work, discipline, efficiency, orderliness, etc. The categories alone are neutral. Rather, the mindset around them can lead a core belief to be limiting.
Just as I did with the car line example, we are going to look at core beliefs that you hold and identify what thoughts or attitudes come up, as well as the resulting actions or behaviors. First, I will give you a more personal example. I have shared previously I have a limiting belief that I am not worthy. It developed as a child and then was reinforced over time. I found ways of coping that seemingly worked for me but the underlying unhealthy belief led me into unhealthy relationships because I didn’t feel worthy of being treated well.
This is how it can flow:
· A limiting belief is formed. Mine was “I’m not worthy.”
· Thoughts and attitudes grow from that belief. Mine were “I must prove my worth and earn my value.”
· Finally, actions and behaviors result from the thoughts. My actions were to strive for grades, achievements and accolades to prove myself and gain love which led to a lifetime of effort and striving.
The good news is that you are not bound by your limiting beliefs! Our blog on February 15th will show you how I turned those limiting beliefs around and how you can as well. It truly was a game-changer for me and a large step into thriving.
“Slowing down to listen to your internal ‘knowing’ is critical. Taking in all the presented facts, instead of just the ones that fit your pattern will help you make critical changes.” Tambry Harris
Quote from Awakening the Light: A Survivors to Thrivers Going-Forward Story available through our book tab or by clicking here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08KK8YFDM
At Survivors to Thrivers, we are committed to encouraging and supporting you as you seek to embrace your healing and growth. We would love to hear steps you have taken to open yourself up to examine core beliefs. Please know we are here to cheer you on– every step of the way!