Freedom Blog

Friday, September 7, 2012

Limiting Beliefs

No Limits | The Freedom Blog

Limiting Beliefs

Written by Steven Griggs |

“Beliefs are powerful. Imagination is more powerful because it can change your beliefs.”                                                                                                                           Bobbe Sommer

"To grow, you must be willing to let your present and future be totally unlike your past. Your history is not your destiny."                                                             Alan Cohen

In an earlier article I wrote that I don’t believe in positive thinking.

Why? Because it doesn’t work.

Putting a positive spin on your negative programing doesn’t work. It might for a while but then the negative feelings will creep back in…..

It took me many years of searching and studying but I eventually understood that the problem is programed in. That it is underneath our daily operating system, our conscious mind.

You have to go to the source of the limiting belief itself to change it.

A belief is a thought with an emotional charge to it. The belief becomes imbedded in your mind and becomes a part of your filter, your belief system. These beliefs are very subtle and float underneath your conscious, day to day mind but together they create your filter, how you see and interact with the world.

All limiting beliefs arise from some instance in our childhood, some interaction with a parent or important adult or teacher that we took to heart and attached meaning to. Sometimes a lot more meaning than may have been intended. 

Usually the limiting belief is one that your mind holds onto because it feels it is necessary for your survival in some way, a mechanism to help you cope and survive.

For example, the thought “I am not important” became enhanced or punctuated by the pain of the rejection you experienced and that was when the thought became a belief.

Your mother really didn’t mean that you weren’t important to her that day she yelled at you when you were four, she was just really stressed out that day and later apologized to you but by that time you had already created a belief that you weren’t important and didn’t really hear her apology. You took on the belief and went on.

Again, this is not a massive, huge belief that “I am not important”, it is very subtle and the belief silently becomes a part of your filter.

In order to eliminate limiting beliefs you have to clear the under programing (your subconscious) of the limiting belief you are carrying. You have to replace the old belief with a better belief, or even better, realize that you don’t need to hold this belief anymore and let it go.

How do you uncover a limiting belief?

You need to listen to your self- talk. Listen to how you talk to yourself and the little things you say, those quiet little comments you make to yourself.

Since we think in terms of language, when we “talk to ourselves” in our minds, we really are having a conversation. So listen for anything you say to yourself that is a negative statement, a justification or rationalization.


“I’m not smart enough”, “I’m too young to make that kind of money now”, “He’s luckier than I am”, “She’s more attractive.”

These are all the symptoms of the underlying limiting belief. Most limiting beliefs revolve around not being good enough but generally they all boil down to low self-esteem.

This is not a one shot deal, we all have many, many limiting beliefs, and we must always work on releasing them.

There are several ways to remove limiting beliefs.

A really good method is through meditation.  It takes a bit of practice and there are some very specific techniques to use to release limiting beliefs.

One meditation I have personally used has you visit yourself as a child. You actually visit with yourself back in time at a point when you were troubled or having a hard time. You have a conversation with the child you.

If you can pin point a specific incident and then visit the child you then, even better. You sooth him or her (yourself) and tell him/her that they are loved and appreciated and that they are safe and you will always be there for him/her (I know it sounds weird but believe me it is really powerful).

This method helps you to explain the real meaning (or non-meaning) of the incident and the emotion that you attached to it that gave rise to the belief.

Byron Katie-The Work

Another method is through the four questions from “The Work” by Byron Katie.

1.       Is it true?
2.      Can you absolutely know it’s true?
3.      How do you react, what happens when you have that thought?
4.      Who would you be without the thought?

In this process you will need to pay attention to your feelings to identify the negative statement and then ask yourself the four questions.

The next step according to Byron Katie is to “turn it around”.  To turn it around you
reverse the order of your original negative statement. Instead of saying “She makes me feel inadequate”, you say “I make me feel inadequate”. This allows you to experience the opposite of what you originally believed. It gives you some interesting insights.

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A third method is called Emotional FreedomTechniques (EFT) or  tapping.

This technique addresses the negative or limiting beliefs we hold in a physical way, by tapping on certain parts of the face and hand. These tapping points are on the energy channels that run through our bodies.

According to EFT the limiting beliefs or negative emotions we hold show up in places throughout our bodies and block the free flow of energy.

By tapping on these points and repeating an affirming statement you break up or remove these blocking emotions or limiting beliefs.

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Recognize that you are ruled by your unconscious thoughts and under programming.
Understand that limiting beliefs filter your view of the world and restrict your potential.
Learn how to remove limiting beliefs and begin removing them.
Begin to achieve more of your potential.