How are limiting beliefs created?

People often ask me “how  are limiting beliefs are created?” This can be the first step in the realisation that the thinking patterns that have been holding you backcan be understood and changed. By asking the question the door is open to the possibility of transformation.

From a research perspective it is fair to say our evidence is anecdotal and comes from observation. Setting up a research model is problematic from both a practical and ethical position.

Leaving that aside when I share my belief about the formation of beliefs most people can relate.

Limiting beliefs, Empowering beliefs and neutral beliefs are all formed by the same processes and mechanisms. There are two primary processesinvolved and both have an external source.

I am sure you will not be surprised that the majority of our core belief systemis in place from a very early age and although we might adjust our beliefs, the basic structure is very resilient and resistant to change.

Both of the primary processes are in play simultaneously so let us consider them each in turn. Firstly, beliefs can be created by constant repetitionin the form of feedback and messages we receive especially those we get from our primary care givers such as parents. As children we assume our parents are all knowingand if they give us messages about our capabilities, our self-worth and about how the world works we are likely to accept these messages.

For instance, if a parent is constantly telling a child they are clumsy there will be an internalising of this message. Even if the child appears to make extra effort to be careful and even becomes known for that quality as an adult, the message has still been internalised. The very act of being extra careful is driven by a fearof people discovering how clumsy our example person is. Alternatively, the same message may result in a person who provides countless examples that the statement about them being clumsy is true.

So, whether we try to be the opposite or we directly accept the role we are still internalising the beliefabout being clumsy.

This same processwould also be responsible for a person taking on a positive beliefsuch as being clever or creative. All of this, with both Limiting and Empowering beliefs happens outside our conscious awareness. We take in the thinking pattern that creates the belief by osmosis and with little conscious processing.

Perhaps an even more fascinating aspect of this process is what happens when a child takes on a belief based on the constant repetition of what is not said. This can often happen where there are siblings. If one child is constantly praised for a particular quality such as creativity but this quality is never attributed to the child’s sister an unwitting message is being delivered. Child logicof the sister is such that the child may take on a belief that she is not creative because she is never told that she is. The parents in this case may not think that at all and were unaware of the unconscious response of their child.

The second of the processes responsible for the creating of beliefs is linked to high emotional loadand could be described as trauma. However, this may be misleading as we do get Empowering beliefsthis way too.

Let me expand, a belief or a series of beliefs can arise from one experience where the emotional intensity is particularly high. The emotions could be anything from fear, loss, anger through to joy or feelings of achievement. The key is high intensity chained to high meaning.

In terms of Limiting beliefs, I have worked with many clients who had a “shame”or “humiliation”experience that converted into feelings of low self-worthand confidence. I have also spoken with other people who have a key moment of inspirationbased on an experience in early childhoodthat created a positive drive and a resilient mind-set.

On Wednesday, 9thMay our NLP Practice groupwill explore this topic further. Do email me if you would like to join us. melody@gwinzlp.com

 

What are Limiting Beliefs and can they be changed?

Have you ever noticed how you hold yourself back from certain things? Sometimes these will be tasks or activities you know logically that you are capable of and yet there is another part of you that is convinced you will never succeed.

Perhaps even more challenging are those personal things you think about yourself as a person that on one level you know they are not true and yet emotionally you hold a conviction that they are fact.

The above are just two examples of limiting beliefs. Often we do not label them as beliefs because we think they are “concrete facts”.

We will defend these limitations, arguing that we have evidence to support these “truths”. On a more positive level we will do the same thing about empowering beliefs we hold about ourselves, others and the world.

Usually it is far easier to spot when someone else is clinging to a limiting belief. We will hear them make a statement about themselves or their abilities that we, the observer, would challenge. We are often able to present counter evidenceand yet the other person is unable to accept even the most well intentioned, gentle and kind feedback.

So, if you want to identify some of your own limiting beliefs, stop for a moment and consider, where in your life have others tried to offer you counter evidence about self-stated truths about you?

There are other ways to track down your limiting beliefs and sometimes we need the help of a skilled professional.

If you want to understand a little bit more about how limiting beliefs are created download my free audio click here.

This audio is a two hour segment from a workshop I ran with 60 people research “Does NLP improve Self-Esteem?” This was part of my research dissertation for my Masters Degreein Applied Positive Psychology and you will be pleased to know the evidence was “yes it does”.

You will also be able to join in with an exercise from NLP that is designed to help you shift that limiting belief and swap it for an Empowering Self Belief that will allow you to shine.

If you are ready to transform your life it might be time to enrol on our NLP PractitionerProgramme and start your own journey of change. Our programme is spread over 4 modules each of 4 days giving you time consolidate both your learning and your transformation.

If you are still not quite sure you can join us for a taster day for just £19.95. This fee covers the costs and is deducted from your invoice when you sign up for either the NLP Diploma or the full NLP Practitioner Training.

Our next one is on 21stJune and there is an alternate date of 21stAugust. Do join us and start making those important changes today!

 

I am also available for individual sessionsusing NLP, Hypnotherapy, Core Transformations, the Wholeness Process, Positive Psychologyand Transactional Analysis.

Contact me direct for more details.