Examining/Evaluating Your Beliefssam
Re-Creating Your Self by Christopher Stone
If you’re a faithful follower of this pillar, then you’ve already completed a major first step in the Re-Creating Your Self process: identifying the personal beliefs that coalesce to create your life and all of its conditions.
It’s time to begin the second major step: examining and evaluating the ideas that you accept as being true about yourself, others, and the world in general.
By listing your beliefs previously, you have already discovered many of the attitudes that shape your life. Please don’t worry about the beliefs that escaped your first inspection. They will reveal themselves as you continue the Re-Creating Your Self process.
Right now, you can begin identifying additional beliefs by paying careful attention to your thoughts, and by listening to the conversations you have with your self throughout the day. These thoughts and inner monologues reflect your beliefs. Make note of them. Add them to your lists.
When you examine your beliefs with patience and an open mind, sooner or later, you will concur with hundreds of Re-Creating Your Self students and thousands of its book readers: what exists in your life first existed in your beliefs, or, to put it another way, mind creates matter.
Exploring your beliefs explains much about your Now Self, the person you are in the present – the one you described in your first Re-Creating Your Self Inner Space Adventure. For one thing, you can trace your beliefs to reveal how they have formed the person you know as your self. Additionally, you can accurately predict the future you will have if you maintain your current beliefs.
Evaluating your beliefs, one at a time, exposes both the excellent positive (truth reflecting) beliefs that produce the experiences you desire, and the false, limiting, and negative beliefs that produce the experiences you want to change.
As we progress in this process, we will describe the spectrum of qualitatively different beliefs: principal and supporting beliefs, positive and negative beliefs, contradictory and outdated. You can immediately use this information to better understand your own belief system – and its determinative affects on your life. Later, this information will assist you in changing the beliefs that diminish and limit you.
PRINCIPAL BELIEFS AND SUPPORTING BELIEFS
Principal beliefs represent your strongest ideas about your self, others, and the world. They are the basic attitudes that shape your life. The strength of Principal Beliefs attracts other ideas of a similar nature. Called Supporting Beliefs, these ideas reinforce your principal beliefs. They were attracted by your principal beliefs, and their power is derived from them.
Here are two examples of both:
Principal Belief: I’m not a likable person.
Supporting Belief: My family doesn’t really care about me.
Principal Belief: Life is meant to be enjoyed.
Supporting Belief: It’s better to have the weekend free than to earn overtime wages working on Sunday.
In each example, the principal belief is a powerful statement about the nature of personal reality; the supporting belief clearly reinforces the principal idea. A principal belief is an electro-magnetic force that draws many supporting ideas to its source: you. Once you’ve identified a principal belief, you can more readily recognize the supporting beliefs it has attracted. It’s simple to understand why someone who believes, “I’m a healthy person,” will also believe, “I’m not susceptible to catching colds.”
When you change a principal belief, the ideas that supported that basic attitude can be quickly altered as well. The individual who changes the principal belief, “I’m not a likable person,” will find it relatively easy to discard the supporting belief, “My family doesn’t really care about me.”
Positive beliefs are those ideas that validate your basic goodness and value. They promote health, happiness and well-being. They confirm your right to become the person you want to be, living the life you desire.
Health, happiness, peace and prosperity are my birthrights.
My relationships contribute to my personal happiness.
Life is an exciting, joyful, creative, learning experience.
Positive beliefs are easy to recognize. An examination of your belief system will undoubtedly reveal that your most successful and fulfilling experiences are in the areas where you hold strong, positive attitudes.
On the flip side, negative beliefs are ideas that deny your basic goodness and worth; they limit your achievement, prosperity, health and happiness. They refute your right to become the person you want to be, living the life you desire.
My life has no purpose or value.
I’m basically powerless and unhealthy.
Other people want to bring me down.
Life’s a struggle.
Negative beliefs are frequently more difficult to recognize than positive beliefs. That’s because we frequently mistake these limiting attitudes as being irrevocable “facts of life.” In truth, few, if any, of the negative beliefs we accept are unchangeable facts of life. Many of our negative beliefs were first accepted from others. Our experiences may seem to validate the negative beliefs that we hold, but it was the beliefs that created the experiences, and not the experiences that created the beliefs.
A Re-Creating Your Self Thought: Tragically, many of our negative beliefs were accepted from others, most especially from authority figures, without questions, and without exploring for ourselves their validity.
Next Time: Contradictory and Outdated Beliefs
Copyright 2008 by Christopher Stone