How You Can Successfully Overcome Negative Beliefs
Three Answers That Won’t Make Your Day Any Better and One Suggestion That Will
One morning about 5 years ago, I woke up feeling like a failure.
No, that’s not quite true. I never fully slept that night, so I can’t honestly claim to have “woken up” that morning. It was more like I just carried on from the night before.
Stress and negative beliefs are like that – we get stuck in patterns of thinking that we can’t achieve our goals. Obstacles seem to be eternal and insurmountable, while our energy and time appear to be all too frail, fleeting and limited.
I can say that five years ago was the last time that I woke up feeling that way. That was literally my “wake-up call” to make changes in my life.
If you are reading this, you probably want to know what I did to break the cycle… What wonder-pill cure or quick-fix technique got me back on track?
Here’s your answer: There isn’t one.
Issues like this run deep. The symptoms that appear at the surface, the things that we think are the problem, are just a symbol of it.
It’s like taking aspirin for a headache caused by a brain tumor… You may feel better for a bit, but the underlying problem is still there.
Like all personal work that is rooted in the goal to achieve more, personal development takes work – COMMITTED WORK, LONG-TERM WORK, and, most importantly, FOCUSED WORK.
Many of my clients come to me asking if one session will fix their issue (or them). The answer is no, or at least not very likely.
We learn our beliefs about ourselves over years of reacting to situations. We don’t unlearn them overnight. Repetition to a message is key to internalizing it.
As a hypnotherapist, I work directly with my client’s subconscious minds. This is where we hold our beliefs about ourselves and the emotions that surround them.
By going directly to the subconscious to reprogram these thoughts with new, positive messages, the overall time to change the client’s belief system may be shorter than with other modalities that take place on the conscious level, such as psychotherapy.
Studies have shown hypnotherapy to be a more effective process than psychotherapy.
But in the end, it still takes time.
1 Stop believing limiting stories about yourself (especially when they are your own)
M Night Shyamalan, the director of Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, and Glass gave a wonderful commencement speech to the graduates of Drexel University in 2018.
It’s thirty minutes of brilliance.
The heart of it revolves around “two stories of his life both, equally true,” from the height of success to the lows of being critically and commercially panned.
As he asks, which story is true? Which one does he choose to focus on?
Which of your stories about your life do you focus on?
2 The thoughts come back (so can you)
Have you ever thought you were well beyond an issue from your past, only to suddenly have it reappear in your awareness like a screaming dragon, obliterating all other thoughts with its presence?
You’re not alone.
It’s just part of how we work.
The good news is that we have a choice on how we react to these thoughts.
Do we curl up in bed and wait for them to go away, wasting days, weeks or months of our lives to a mistaken belief?
Do we stand up, acknowledge our achievements (no matter how big or small) and tell the negative thoughts that they no longer have power over us? This book helps immensely.
Either choice is ours to make. You do have the power to choose the latter.
Most likely, that is the more difficult choice to make because it takes effort to quiet these derogatory voices. The path of least resistance is to stay in bed.
But when have great things ever been accomplished by taking the path of least resistance?
3 Others may not understand your choices (that’s their problem, not yours)
When you commit to making changes in your life, you’re going to begin digging up things of which you were not consciously aware. This can be scary and frustrating.
As you process these new challenges, you may want to do so privately or by talking with those close to you (or a professional).
Professionals can help guide you through these dark waters, but your friends and family may not understand your path.
Your family and friends have a story about who you are, who they know you to be; just as you have a story of them, who they are, and the script of how your interaction will play out based on these stories.
They might not be open to discussing sensitive, emotional issues – not because they don’t care about you, but they may not have the emotional capacity or reference to do so. That’s OK. Just know that they do care about you and will help in the manner in which they can.
It could also be that the events in your life are a mirror to things in theirs. That may be a mirror into which they would prefer not to look, else they be made aware of their perceived shortcomings.
Our egos make fragile shelters.
So, what can you do when struck with immobilizing thoughts?
First, take a deep breath. Or two. Or three. Or more.
Get calm and get clear.
These thoughts are not you. They are merely thoughts.
Think about what you want to accomplish. Ignore the obstacles that you perceive in the moment.
Just focus on the goal.
Ask yourself, “What one thing can I do today to get one step closer to my goal?”
Then take that step. Move out of fear, move past your limiting thoughts and take action.
Action is empowering.
Repeat the process tomorrow.
And the next day.
And the next.
Remember that you are, as M. Night Shyamalan says in his speech, “insanely powerful.”
I love his analogy relating life to a jigsaw puzzle. Trust that there is a picture of your life and keep looking for the next piece to bring it all together.
Trust and belief in yourself are key to success. Trust that the Universe is on your side.
If you find yourself struggling with thoughts of failure, or beliefs that you cannot achieve (or maybe are not worthy of achieving) your goal, then contact me now.
It’s time for you to start believing in yourself and your ability to be successful and happy.