• Allison McClintick, M.A. PhD(s)

Beliefs Are All You Have: How's that working out?


To get a sense of how powerful your beliefs are, maybe it's smart to take them apart a bit first.

Hugely simplified, a thought is just this "thing" that pops into your head that you ponder on for a short period of time. Or maybe longer.

A belief is a thought or series of thoughts that you pondered on a lot and over the course of that time, you took it on as a "truth". Then you started to react to it in life, it became a construct you subscribe to and then, you compare all the rest of your exposure to that belief. Yikes. And that's just for one.

It's important to recognize that beliefs are constructs you created and you created that construct out of all the available options regarding that particular context. Do you know why? Most people don't. Now-are those constructs you created helping, hindering, or hurting you? Most people don't know that either.

All of life is relying on our beliefs. Everything from our beliefs about the weather, tan chairs, homeschooling, dairy or goat cheese, wars, politics, spirituality, careers...everything. I even venture to propose that life is belief because it really informs the way you think, feel, decide, act and communicate. What else is there?

To get a sense of how your constructs are working for you, you need to first know what they are. If this seems like a daunting task..it is. We're talking about peeling back the layers of every belief you have. Once you start tracing what your constructs are, you can see how they are all working off each other to put you right in the spot you're currently sitting in. If you don't like some of these constructs, the best part is that you can recreate it. Simple enough? Maybe...here are a few tips to get this party started:

1. Pick a topic that irritates, angers, frustrates, annoys or bothers you about you. What is it you believe about this thing about you? Why do you think it continues? What would you do instead? What does that change hinge on?

2. Pick a topic that triggers you about something other than you. What is the story you tell yourself about this thing? How do you know you're right? What ways can you rework the story to make it more positive/neutral/fair/realistic/expanded?

3. Analyze what beliefs you stubbornly enjoy holding onto even though they don't really work well for you, overall. Why the hell are you doing that?? What emotion does it satisfy? What other BELIEF does it satisfy?

4. Pick 3 or 4 core beliefs you really want to have. These should be constructs that serve you well-meaning; it doesn't divide you intentionally against yourself or someone else, it doesn't tear down, it doesn't limit, it doesn't "drink the Koolaid"...these beliefs are things that you know put you in a positive, forward moving direction regardless.

Now, see how tough it is to work against the constructs that you have embedded into your life for years. Try to challenge them anytime you are conscious enough to notice they showed up. Things will change in your world-you better believe it. ;)

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© 2017 ALLISON MCCLINTICK