I have recently been working with a client, (lets call him Frank) about getting a good balance between work and the rest of his life. Three weeks ago, before we started working together, he had been working so hard, every hour he could, neglecting his wife and small children, his friends and his own desire to relax, even just to have a drink with friends. He felt he had lost the ability to just enjoy himself.
He is moving rapidly into the balance he wants and yet, even though he is loving his new freedom and actually getting just as much done, he is also noticing a part of himself resisting not working so hard and having it be easy!
- ‘I’m not used to it being so easy’
- ‘I have to be achieving something’
- ‘It’s easy and I want to ease into it more’
- ‘I’ve got to word hard, got to be at it all the time’
- ‘I feel like I’ve been in a coma and I’m coming alive’
- ‘Got to grow up’
- ‘No Pain, no gain’
This is a list of his thinking, some of which was creating the block in his energy system to working less and achieving more.
Notice that last thought ‘No pain, no gain’ as it is an example of a powerful limiting belief and had controlled Frank’s life for many years.
This belief has cost him time, focus, energy and has been extremely draining.
As I questioned him about what happened when he began to relax, watch a movie with his children or have drinks with friends, he began to notice remnants of his automatic thinking stepping in and with it, frustration, impatience, panic, guilt;
- ‘You shouldn’t be doing this – you should be working’
- ‘You’re wasting time – you’re not achieving anything’
- ‘You’re copping out’
- ‘You’re flopping around’
- You’re cheating’
- ‘I don’t deserve this’
- ‘Too many balls in the air, no time for this’
We started using EFT around this limiting belief of No pain, no gain, and within minutes he shifted in his thinking realising that he hasn’t always had this belief, it is actually only over the last seven years. Before that he was in full flow and things worked. He realised that his natural way is to be in balance, and in that place, more is achieved, with less struggle.
He was astonished at the revelation that this is new behaviour for him, and began to get very curious about how he had been making life a lot more difficult then it needed to be. He had been assuming (more automatic thinking) that he needed to learn how to chill, when in fact he already knew!
Emotion will always over rule logic.
The base of this belief for Frank was in the collapse of a business venture seven years ago – he had emotion invested in that, hence the emotional response to getting a balance. However, where it came from doesn’t really matter – what matters is that it shifted because as the limiting belief changes, so does the automatic thinking and life opens up. Frank is fully integrated now with the belief that Life is about balance, he can work and he can play and that is right! His relationships are improving, he is happier and he is working more efficiently and more effectively.
What is a Limiting belief?
It is a thought that cannot be proved and is often the truth for the thinker.
Beliefs tend to be automatic thought – just an instant response to something, and the response tends to continue unless addressed.
These beliefs sit just below the conscious mind on the surface of the sub-conscious.
What is the cost of a limiting belief?
That depends what the belief is – it can be huge, stopping you from moving forwards and making a success of your chosen career, relationship or any other area of your life.
How do I know if I’ve got one?
We all have limiting beliefs along with positive beliefs – hundreds if not thousands. A limiting belief becomes a problem when;
- You need to do something and somehow, you just can’t! For example, a small business owner needs to learn about, and get involved in, sales and marketing in order to let people know about the product or service they are selling. Many small business owners’ misunderstand/hate sales and marketing, so don’t do it, or don’t do it properly. In that case, there is definitely a limiting belief in the way which might go something like ‘sales and marketing are boring’; ‘people will think I’m pushy’; ‘I’m creative, so I can’t do sales and marketing’.
- You continue to believe something, often for years when it is obviously not serving you. For example, I have heard from female clients that old belief ‘all men cheat’. The truth is that they don’t all cheat – some do, and so do some women! If you have been in relationship when you were hurt because you felt ‘cheated on’, it is possible that you can believe this to be true of all men/women. So what is the benefit in having a belief like that? Basically, we set up beliefs in order to protect ourselves from getting hurt in some way. In this example, believing ‘all men cheat’, stops the holder of that belief from getting close to someone, getting intimate because of a fear that they might be hurt again.
You may or may not be aware that our beliefs steer our lives. We live according to the beliefs we have set up for ourselves. We have both limiting and positive beliefs. A positive belief will support us because even though it may not be true, it strengthens us in some way. For example, some people believe in a forgiving and loving God.
So, do you recognise any of the following as being true for you in any area of your life? (please fill in your own blanks);
- ‘I am not pretty enough’
- I am not clever enough’
- I am too fat/too thin/not attractive enough’
- I am not interesting enough’
- If I try to do ………, then I’ll fail’
- ‘I’m not good enough’
- I’ll have to work really hard to get enough money/success/recognition/………..
- ‘I’m not talented enough for …………..
- You made a mistake so you don’t deserve ……………
- I’m no good at talking to people/networking/communicating/connecting/………
- If I ………… I’ll be laughed out of town.
- ‘If I’m successful, then things will change and I like things as they are’.
- ‘I’m useless at marketing my business’
- ‘It’s really difficult to change an old belief’
- ‘If I get close to someone, I’ll get hurt again’
- Rich people don’t go to heaven
- Good people don’t get rich
- I will never make a good living as a Coach
- I don’t deserve it
- Success takes time
- I’m not good enough to make money
- If I have money, everyone will want it
- I’d have to work really hard so people won’t question what they pay me
- People who have money are corrupt
- Successful people are corrupt, hard and unlikable
- I don’t need to be a millionaire, I just need enough to get by
- I don’t need a lot of money, I just want to survive
- If I was successful, I would be better then my parents, brother, husband, somebody else.
So, what came up in your mind as you read that little list?
What Beliefs, both Positive and limiting do you live by?
Make a list.
Now, congratulate yourself on the positive beliefs and ask yourself the following of the limiting beliefs,
- ‘How has this belief benefited me?’
- ‘What has this belief cost me”
A benefit could be;
- I get to stay comfortable without having to do anything, or change anything.
- I get to know what’s going to happen next
- I don’t get hurt.
- Even, I’ll get into heaven!!
The costs of limiting beliefs far outweigh any seeming benefits;
- a relationship,
- a chance to change something,
- a chance to make connections,
- writing a book,
- Constant procrastination
- Having loads of great ideas and not doing anything about them
- starting a new project
- following through on ideas
- starting a business,
- having a family;
- moving forwards
and those are all for starters!
What can I do about my limiting thoughts?
Old technology gave us affirmations to try to counteract these limiting thoughts. It is very slow taking months and even years to make a difference. Modern technology has given us EFT, Emotional Freedom techniques. Changing limiting thinking using EFT takes minutes or hours.
When you let go of a limiting thought, and allow in a positive and supportive thought, the whole world seems to change. The truth is, it is simply your thinking which has changed and… it is your thoughts, which create your world.
So, what are you going to do about your limiting beliefs and your automatic thinking? Are you going to carry on the same for years, feeling something missing, not quite working, carrying on with the same old struggles and anxieties, or are you going to be one of the 2% of the population who actually get up and do something about helping themselves to a happier life.
My advice – try EFT. Get yourself an accredited practitioner who knows what he or she is doing and watch, with wonder and amazement, how everything opens up for you.
If you would like to chat to me about this or work with me through some limiting beliefs, just send me an email – I’d love to hear from you.