Are Your Learned Limiting Beliefs Holding You Back?
Are Your Learned Limiting Beliefs Holding You Back?
Many of us have baggage that we carry around throughout our lives like a camel.
Most of these limiting beliefs or fixed ideas are things that we have learned through experience from people or events in our lives. Some of these come from a parents, friends, lovers, teachers and so on.
Unfortunately, many of these beliefs are negative. They have not come from successful, positive people, but usually from unsuccessful, negative people that we encounter in our lives.
We carry these beliefs around like backpacks which weighs us down throughout our lives.
We drag them into new relationships and expect people to accommodate us and our emotional baggage.
Examples of these beliefs could be:
- I don’t trust men, I don’t trust women
- Rich people are greedy crooks or evil
- Money is the root of all evil or is bad for us
- People who are nice to us want something in return.
- People of a certain race, age or gender are this way or that way
Learned beliefs are deeply ingrained into our minds like a default setting, which you can replace with a new setting.
We will continue to carry beliefs around and unless we deal with them they will slow us down for the rest of our lives.
Instead of taking the ‘beliefs backpack’ off of our backs and mentally throwing on a virtual fire, we expect people to “deal with it” because “this how I am” so “take it or leave it”!
It’s as if we simply expect people to accept and accommodate our limiting beliefs. Maybe we don’t say it directly, but indirectly you are pigeonholing people you probably don’t even know based on your past experiences.
You’re saying, this is what I believe because I’ve had a bad experience with some loser or abuser, therefore I’m going to hold back on everyone else based on this one bad experience.
It’s absurd when you think about it!
At the extreme end, people are killing each other because of difference in beliefs over different variations of the same religion!
A believe is something that you learn and accept as the truth. Once we have a belief lodged in our head ii will stay there until we change the default sessions.
For instance, you may have been brought up with a certain faith or set of values and refuse to accept anyone who does not meet your standards.
You may have been brought up to believe that people from another country are bad based on the fact that your country once had a war with their country. This could be a recent war or a war that happened a century ago.
Beliefs can be formed unconsciously by the behaviours of others, such as our parents, with whom we spend most of our time. People who have had abusive parents often, but not always, go on to become abusive themselves. It might sound like a cliche, but many inmates in prison have come from broken or even abusive homes.
People whose parents have never worked and lived on benefits can pass this habit on to their children. There are areas of the UK where there are three generations of families who have never worked and just lived on benefits.
A recent report in the UK found that the third of children worry about family finances
On the other hand, children from loving and successful homes are more likely to pick up those success habits. Again, this is not always the case but from my observation I’ve seen it time and time again.
When I wrote ‘Yes money can buy happiness’, I wrote about people’s limited money beliefs that hold them back in life and even put a subconscious ceiling on how much they can earn.
Whilst money obviously plays an important part when it comes to living a happy and secure life, it’s not the be all and end all. In fact, most of our happiness comes from other people around us.
Think of a time in your life and you feel happiness and joy. Can you picture in your mind? Where are you? Who are you with? Was it with friends, family or someone you love? It’s unlikely that it was sitting alone having dinner in front of the TV, right?
There are those of you who think being single and living on your own is cool and part of modern life, but let me tell you that for millions, being alone sucks!
Humans and most animals were simply not designed to be alone and isolated. For thousands of years we’ve lived in tribes, groups and communities.
As the number of people living in single households in the UK has reaches record levels, so has depression, mental illness and suicide despite living in the most prosperous time in history.
Yes, you see beautiful young people sitting in Starbucks with the iMac looking cool, but are they really happy and fulfilled?
Happiness does not come from pleasure. Happiness comes from living a fulfilled life filled with love and activity. Happiness comes from giving and sharing, building a life with someone you love, raising children, going through struggles together for building a business.
You really need to deal with your negative learned beliefs otherwise they will ruin your life and cause you to repeat the same mistakes over and over again.
Moving towards and moving away from goals
Many philosophers in the past have discussed the fact that we do things based on moving towards pleasure or reward and or moving away from pain or discomfort.
You might have a goal to earn more money or own the house of your dreams, which would be a moving towards goal.
On the other hand, if you have a goal to lose weight or give up smoking that’s a moving away from goal.
A conflict arises when the pull of pain or pleasure is greater than your desire to achieve something.
If you are trying to lose weight, but really enjoy sweets and sugary foods then you have a conflict of interests. You know that in order to lose weight you must cut down on sugary foods, but the pleasure of eating those foods is so great, and stronger than your desire to lose weight, that you cannot give them up.
If you’ve had a bad experience with your previous partner or spouse, you may want to trust the new person in your life, but the negative pull of the previous experience is so great that you cannot let go and form new relationships. Letting go is key.
When I was a child living at home, we had a lovely little dog who brought fun and pleasure to the family’s life. Obviously dogs don’t live as long as us so when that dog died it was so painful the for the family that we never wanted to have a dog again. The pain of losing the dog was so great that it deprived us of enjoying another pet.
I recently watched a BBC documentary about a group of Holocaust survivors who had their portraits commissioned by Prince Charles.
These five people had been through the most horrific experiences imaginable in Nazi concentration camps. They had every reason to lose faith in human nature and hold on to the negative experience.
Despite this, they had gone on to lead happy and successful lives. They showed no bitterness in their faces and had learned to let go of the baggage of the past, forgive, trust people and be happy.
There are many books, techniques and guided meditations available to help you unblock or get rid of limiting beliefs.
Find something that works best for you and helps free you from any beliefs which are holding you back.
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