Are you aware of the limiting beliefs that may be controlling your life? Discover some of the false beliefs that you might not be aware of, and how to heal them. Operating from truth rather than from your programmed false beliefs is life-changing!
All of us absorbed false beliefs as we are growing up – from our parents, siblings, friends, teachers, religious leaders, and the media. We also drew our own conclusions from our experiences of rejection and various forms of abuse. These beliefs now govern many of our feelings, actions, and outcomes in our work and our relationships.
It’s sometimes challenging to uncover these false beliefs.
These beliefs are stored in our lower left brain, our lower amygdala, our fight or flight mechanism. Growing up, they became part of our survival strategies by giving us a sense of control in areas where we didn’t have control.
Now, most of these beliefs are causing us much pain, but we are often either not aware of them, or we think they are true, and most people don’t connect their anxiety, depression, guilt, shame, aloneness, emptiness, anger, jealousy, or relationship problems with acting from these false beliefs. These beliefs might be ruining your life without you realizing it.
While most of us have hundreds of false beliefs, I’ve found with my clients that there are some common beliefs that may be causing you to feel stuck in your life or your relationships.
Every client I’ve ever worked with, and I’ve worked with many thousands of people, judged themselves in various way. And when we explore why they are judging themselves – what they believe about self-judgment, invariably they have the false belief that, quote: “Judging myself motivates me to do what I have to do.”
Many of the very successful people I’ve worked with strongly believe that they would not be where they are if they didn’t pressure themselves through judge themselves harshly – that they would just sit on a couch and do nothing if they didn’t judge themselves.
What they don’t realize is that our soul essence is highly motivated to express our gifts in the world, and they succeeded in spite of the judgments and pressure, rather than because of this controlling behavior. Those people who have the courage to stop pressuring and judging themselves, discover that they become even more successful with less work because now they are being informed by their higher self rather than by their wounded self and they receive the wonderful experience of spirit co-manifesting with them.
Another common false belief is “I can’t handle my feelings. If I open to them, they will be never end, and I will go crazy or die.”
This often shows up in clients as anxiety, depression, and anger, along with numerous addictions intended to squash or numb their feelings.
For many of us growing up, our pain was unending, and if we felt it we might have died or gone crazy.
While it’s true that as children we could not manage big painful feelings such as loneliness, grief, heartbreak, or helplessness over others, as well as other experiences than can create fear and trauma, it’s not true now that we cannot learn to manage our painful feelings rather than continue to avoid them.
Avoiding your feelings is a form of self-rejection and self-abandonment. Our feelings are our inner child – our beautiful soul essence who often communicates through feelings. Ignoring your feeling not only cuts you off from a profound source of guidance, because all our feelings have important information for us, it also creates the same kind of pain and fear that an actual baby would feel of you ignored it’s cry.
Part of the power of the practice of the 6 steps of Inner Bonding is that you learn how to learn from and lovingly manage your painful feelings.
Another very common false belief is “I’m not enough – not smart enough, attractive enough or good enough. Validation from others determines my worth. Because I’m not good enough, my adequacy lovability, and feelings of self-worth have to come from others liking me and approving of me, and if others disapprove of me or reject me, it proves that I’m not good enough.”
This of course, along with other self-judgments, is a source of the feeling of shame.
When you believe that you are, in some way, not enough, then you are constantly trying to prove that you are enough. Until you develop a loving adult who internally validates you, you will continue to try to have control over getting others’ approval.
If, when we were very young, we didn’t receive the love we needed or were being abused, we likely concluded that it was our fault we were being hurt because we were not good enough. Believing it was our fault we were not being loved gave us a sense of control – if we could just do everything right and be prefect, then we would receive the love we needed. We went about creating our wounded self to have control over getting love and avoiding pain, forgetting that we chose to believe that we are not good enough as a form of control.
Then, as adults, we get addicted to trying to have control over getting love and avoiding pain and judging ourselves as not good enough is still a major form of control.
Another very common false belief that has a huge negative effect on relationships, is “I’m responsible for others’ feelings and others’ are responsible for mine.“
This false belief is what leads to codependent relationships, where couples become caretakers and takers, overtly and covertly controlling trying to get love from each other while abandoning themselves. Every couple I work with are overtly controlling with anger and blame and/or covertly controlling with caretaking, being a needy victim, or resistance.
Often my clients are afraid to stop being dependent or codependent out of fear of another false belief: “If I don’t give myself up or keep control over my partner, I will end up alone.”
Many of the clients I work with grew up with controlling and invasive parents and learned to give themselves up in some areas and completely resist in others. Now, they find that as soon as they really like someone, they take responsibility for the other’s feelings, by going along with what the other wants. Then, what frequently happens is they feel engulfed by the relationship, and then they shut down and resist, which leads to feeling that this is not the right relationship. Or, they continue giving themselves up and eventually feel angry that they are not receiving what they are giving. Without a loving adult, willing to take responsibility for their own feelings, this pattern will continue.
The fear of ending up alone stems from the belief that you can’t survive if you were left alone. And again, this was true as a baby and toddler, and is true for physically ill or disabled adults, but it’s not true for functioning adults who are capable of taking care of themselves. As adults, the fear of being left alone comes from the fear of leaving ourselves alone through self-abandonment.
Another very common false beliefs is that “I can control how others feel about me and treat me.” Most of us grow up believing that if we act a certain way, or look a certain way, or perform a certain way, we can control others’ feelings and behavior. While we can influence others with our behavior, influence is very different than control. No one controls how you feel about them or how you treat them, so why believe that you can control how others feel about you and treat you
Along with this belief, is another similar belief:
“If I’m perfect, I can control how others feel about me.”
How often do you tell yourself that you have to do everything right and be perfect and then you can get love? How much joy are you getting from life by trying to be ‘perfect’ rather than being yourself?
Not only do we have many false beliefs regarding how we can control others, we also have false beliefs about resisting being controlled. A common false belief, one that often gets people stuck in procrastination, is “Resisting control is essential to my integrity, my individuality, and my identity. I have to resist to avoid being swallowed up.”
Like all the other false beliefs, this also comes from the wounded self, believing that the only choices you have if someone is trying to control you is either to resist or comply. The loving adult knows that true freedom is to neither resist nor comply, but rather to open to learning about what you want and what is in your highest good. Many people automatically resist, even if it’s something they want to do, because not being controlled is their highest priority. They don’t realize that they are being controlled by their resistance because they are not choosing to do what is loving to them. They don’t have the freedom to say yes when it’s something they want to do, or say no if it’s something they don’t want to do. They just resist, believing that they are acting from freedom and integrity, when what’s really happening is they are keeping themselves stuck in not taking loving actions for themselves.
Another common false belief that can keep people stuck is:
“My intelligence, abilities, character, and/or talents are fixed qualities. Working hard is pointless since I can’t change these. If I fail, I am a failure.”
When children are told that they are very smart and talented, or that they are stupid, they come to believe that making an effort is pointless. Kids who are told they are smart become afraid to really try, for fear of not being smart enough, and children who are told they are stupid believe there is no point in trying. It is vitally important to understand that intelligence, ability, and character are not fixed qualities, and improve with effort.
Another common false belief is:
“I can be happy only if I’m in a relationship.”
This belief seems to be more prevalent in women than men, although I’ve worked with many men who also have this belief. Men are often taught that their happiness and value come from their financial success, and women are often taught that their happiness and value lies in being in a relationship. When you have this belief, then you put all your effort into finding the right relationship, rather than in developing a loving internal relationship with yourself and your spiritual guidance. You look for a relationship to get something – love, validation, sex, safety, approval, fun – rather than to share the fullness of your own being, which you can do only when you learn to love yourself.
And another common false belief is:
“I’m not safe.”
Raymond, one of my clients who comes from a highly abusive background, keeps himself emotionally distant from people to feel safe. As much as he would love to be in a relationship, he is unable to be emotionally intimate for fear of getting hurt. The only way he has been able to feel close is through sex, and he is sexually addicted as a result. As long as his inner child cannot rely on his loving adult to listen to his feelings, speak up for himself, and take loving actions for himself, he won’t feel safe, and he won’t feel safe enough to be in a close relationship. He will be unable to have a close and emotionally intimate relationship, and will continue to feel distant even in social situations with friends and family.
Then, there are many false beliefs about God. What were you taught about God? Here are some of the false beliefs that many people have about God:
- God is a judgmental man in the sky.
- I have been abandoned by God because I am unworthy, bad, flawed, unlovable, or unimportant.
- God doesn’t exist. I am ultimately alone so I have to maintain control. There is nothing spiritual to turn to.
- If there is a God, then he/she/it would have done something about bad things happening. Therefore, either God doesn’t exist or doesn’t care.
- God is too busy for me.
Many people project their judgmental and controlling parents on to their concept of God as a person, and then want nothing to do with God.
The Bible states, in John 4:8 to 4:24, that “God is Spirit…God is love.”
1 John 4:16 states that “God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
That is my experience – that God is Love and is all around us and within us. Given that God is love, there can never be any judgment or control – just truth, peace, and joy.
These are just a few of the many false beliefs that may be governing your life. Step Three of Inner Bonding is about discovering the beliefs that may be keeping you unhappy, anxious and stuck in your life. I encourage you to explore your underlying beliefs whenever you are feeling badly – anxious, depressed, angry, ashamed and so on, and bring in the truth from your Guidance in Step Four of Inner Bonding. When, in Step Five, you act on the truth, instead of on your false beliefs, you can eventually move beyond being governed by these limiting beliefs.
Have you found that the same false beliefs keep coming up over and over – even though intellectually you know they aren’t true? This is what Betty asked me about. She said:
“Many times I have identified a false belief through my guidance but I find that almost all the time, I slip back into acting from the old belief – even though my guidance has provided me with the truth. Do you have any suggestions about helping to really integrate the truth? Have you found anything that works for you?”
There are two steps to healing a false belief. The first is what Betty is referring to – going to your Guidance for the truth.
The second step is that you need to consistently treat yourself according to the truth. For example, you discover that your false belief is that you aren’t good enough, and then you go to your Guidance for the truth. Your Guidance tells you that you are a beautiful spark of the Divine, so of course you are good enough. But then, if you continue to abandon yourself – by ignoring your feelings and staying focused in your head, or by judging yourself, or by numbing your feelings with addictions, or by making someone else responsible for loving you and making you feel safe and worthy – why would your inner child believe you? Whenever you abandon yourself, the message you give your inner child is that he or she isn’t good enough, so no matter how much you tell yourself that you are good enough, until you treat yourself lovingly, the belief that you are not good enough won’t heal.
To heal a false belief, you need to consistently treat yourself as you would treat a beloved child, rather than how your parents or caregivers treated you or themselves. Only when you do this, and do it over time, will the false belief heal.
Rob asked the following question about false beliefs:
“I have identified a couple of debilitating beliefs that actually result in feelings of apathy and despair and since I tend to be a little OCD, they tend to persist. I know in my mind that the beliefs are false, but they are still in my subconscious. There is still emotional charge on them. My question is: will just observing them cause them to diminish over time and vanish or do I need to do something additional? Maybe I need to pray for guidance on how to replace the false belief with a true one. Is this something that I should dialogue with my higher self about? I am confused about the mental versus the emotional components of beliefs.”
I told Rob the same thing I told Betty – it’s treating ourselves lovingly that heals false beliefs. Healing beliefs is not simply an intellectual process – it takes loving action. Apathy and despair are indications of self-abandonment, so Rob would need to explore how he is abandoning himself, and what actions would be loving to himself, to begin to heal the false beliefs. The more he treats his inner child as a cherished being, the more the false beliefs get healed.
I know this from my personal experience and my experience with many thousands of clients. When I now look at lists of false beliefs I used to have, I’m so grateful that I don’t have them anymore. It took time and much Inner Bonding practice to heal them, but the neural pathways for these beliefs that were housed in my lower left brain have been replaced with new neural pathways in my higher brain – pathways based on the truth rather than on the lies of the ego wounded self. It was not only knowing about the false beliefs, but focused loving action that created these strong new neural pathways.
You will find that the more you take loving action on your own behalf, the weaker your false beliefs become. Living from truth rather than from false beliefs is a wonderful way to live!
You can learn much about loving yourself and healing your false beliefs with my 30-Day at-home Course: “Love Yourself: An Inner Bonding Experience to Heal Anxiety, Depression, Shame, Addictions and Relationships.”
A powerful way of discovering and healing your false beliefs is to go through the SelfQuest program at https://selfquest.com.
You can also learn much about discovering and healing false beliefs with my workbook, “The Inner Bonding Workbook: Six Steps to Healing Yourself and Connecting With Your Divine Guidance.”
And, of course, we have much to offer you at our website at https:www.innerbonding.com
I’m sending you my love and my blessings.