What Does A Negative Belief About Self Do To You?


“Belief always precedes action.” ~ James Allen author of As A Man Thinketh

What Does A Negative Belief About Self Do To You?

I recently read the book, What’s Your Body Telling You? by Steve Sisgold.

how to change a negative beliefSisgold believes the seeds of success and failure are within all of us.

Which seeds will sprout are determined by your beliefs, which he calls viral beliefs.

What Are Viral Beliefs?

Each of us lives and operates from a complex set of beliefs that define us and the world we live in.

The dictionary definition of belief is the acceptance of the mind that something is real or true.

So what you believe to be true will effect how you perceive and experience the world.

Because of that we rarely call our beliefs into question.

As long as your beliefs go unchallenged, they will continue to shape your perceptions and direct your actions at the unconscious level.

Fortunately, every moment holds the potential to break the spell unconscious beliefs may hold over you.

How Beliefs Affect Us

Beliefs can…

  • influence your perceptions
  • define for you what is good, bad, true, real and possible
  • skew your perception in positive or negative ways
  • direct or limit the actions you take
  • shape your character
  • affect your relationships
  • set a course you will follow
  • determine your health
  • raise or lower your happiness levels
  • boost or limit your passion

Why We Take Action Or Not

Since your beliefs determine, not only if, but how you take action, positive beliefs will most likely cause actions and attitudes that attract positive outcomes.

Likewise, negative thoughts foster attitudes and actions – or inaction– that run contrary to your desires and goals.

This is why so many people’s dreams never get realized.

The fact that we often don’t question our negative beliefs and simply accept them as the way things are, makes them particularly poisonous.

Like a virus they inhibit and sicken the body.

They usually lie dormant until something external triggers them like a challenge or disappointment.

The good news is no matter what happened in your past, your destiny is not predetermined.

The life you truly desire is just around the corner if you tweak your belief system.

Where Do Beliefs Come From

Most beliefs are handed-down from your family, community and culture.

You are conditioned by attitudes, mindsets and ways of interpreting reality that worked for those that came before you.

The good news is that your ancestors survived.

The bad news is that they may have done so based on inaccurate points of view.

Regardless of their validity, these beliefs are downloaded into your during your early years before you are able to understand or question them.

You did not make them up and they are not specific to you, but they do shape the way you experience yourself and understand “the way life is.”

An example would be “The USA is the best country in the world.” or “You will go to hell for your sins.”

Trauma Effects Our Beliefs

You also form beliefs because of traumatic events that have high emotional impacts and therefore are difficult to fully feel and release at the time.

The unprocessed emotion remains in the body as emotional stress, energy blocks and physical tension.

In this way, past trauma gets superimposed on the present and is unconsciously reexperienced again and again.

For example if a coach humiliated you in front of the team by shouting, “You’re worthless!”

Then you could form the belief, “I’m no good for the team.”

As an adult, you could then have difficulty presenting ideas to a committee or work group.

When you face similar challenges later, the belief becomes active and dictates how we think, feel and behave.

Paper Tigers

Among the Chinese, a paper tiger represents anything that appears very powerful, but in reality is nothing to be afraid of.

Negative beliefs about selfYour viral beliefs are like paper tigers – they are illusionary.

If you believe it is real, you will be scared and run away. Your body will respond with chemicals that signal DANGER.

Your viral beliefs can cause fear as long as they are unexamined and unchallenged.

You will think some circumstance is standing between you and your goals, when it is really a paper tiger.

It doesn’t have a bite, unless you believe it has teeth.

I’m Not Important

One of my clients, Maggie believed and lived as if her opinions were not important.

As a result, she was quiet and had difficulty participating in conversations and contributing at work.

She was sad and lonely because she felt like people never got to know her.

In our sessions, she uncovered the root of this belief.

Her older sister was the one everyone always gave attention to and she felt like she was always ignored.

As a child and being impressionable, she formed the belief, what I have to say must not be important.

Unconscious Behavior Patterns

This belief persisted into adulthood and set up unconscious behavior patterns that confirmed and reinforced her conviction.

Like when she asked a colleague their opinion when they were rushing out the door to a meeting or started a deep discussion with her boyfriend when he was about to fall asleep.

Our beliefs my be buried so deep in our unconscious minds that we may not even know they exist.

We accept their truth without questioning the limitations they impose.

They are a familiar part of our operating system that we take for granted.

They may lie inactive for years and suddenly flare up when triggered by a stressful situation or event.

You Are Not Doomed

This is key, having viral beliefs does not mean you will have a predetermined fate.

With the right tools, it is possible to cut through your illusion of your paper tiger and create beliefs that serve you.

If you would like help figuring out what viral beliefs are holding you back, click the image below to set up a complimentary clarity session.

Clarity Session with Wendy Lynne, Life Coach



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