I think self belief is one of the most important qualities anyone can have and building self belief is one of the most important things you can do for your self. This is because whatever you believe you make real. If you believe in yourself then life is something that you can engage with because you know that you will find the answer or find a way past challenges as they come up. If you don't believe in yourself then life becomes a much more scary place because you won’t feel like you have the tools or the ability to handle what comes up in life. I spoke about this in the last blog on resilience but it is not just in this area where having a strong belief in yourself is important. It is important in every area of your life. In fact when my kids started school my one desire for them was that when they finished school that they would believe in themselves then they would be able to face anything in life and know deep down that they would be able to thrive and life would be an exciting journey of exploration.
If you have low self belief this is not the end of the world as self belief is something that you can develop and grow and I will give you a technique later in this blog that will help you do just that. Firstly I want to dive a little bit deeper into self belief and into beliefs in general so that you can really understand how what you believe you make real.
When you believe something to be true your subconscious creates thoughts and actions that align with that belief. If for example I believe that I’m not particularly clever then I will have resistance to taking part in things that challenge my mental capacity and because I believe that I'm not good in that area I will avoid doing things that require me to use this faculty. I might even get fearful when I am put into a situation where it requires me to be clever. And this is the catch, when you are scared and you feel fearful your brain responds by putting you into fight, flight and freeze mode. When this happens the focus of your brain moves to survival and to the reptilian brain which takes focus away from your higher thinking. This means if I believe that I am not particularly clever and I am put into a situation that challenges my cleverness my brain in the panic will shut down and prove to me that I really am NOT very clever. The subconscious is so powerful at convincing us of our beliefs that we truly believe that they are the truth.
Another example might be if I believe that I am not loveable and I start a relationship my partner might pass a comment that to other people does not mean anything but because I have pain around this I might over react by getting angry or by withdrawing. Either of these responses will cause distance between me and my partner and over time with many more incidences like this my partner will most likely leave proving to me that indeed I am unlovable.
There are all sorts of beliefs that you have created both positive and negative which generate thoughts and actions that perpetuate the belief.
There are people in the world who have very little other than self belief and they have achieved phenomenal things. People like Hellen Keller who was blind and deaf but has written books and is widely quoted for the wisdom she has shared and Nick Vujicic who was born without limbs and is now an internationally famous inspirational speaker and has also written at least one best selling book. When I look at people who have bounced back from all sorts of incredibly challenging situations only to succeed in the most amazing ways the one thing they all had in common was self belief.
Now that I have hopefully impressed upon you how important it is I am sure you want to know how to develop it.
For instance if I decided I was going to go and run 10 miles ( I am really, really unfit at the moment and there is no way I could run 10 miles) I would start dreading it immediately. These thoughts of dread would be my subconscious already manipulating me to start doubting myself. I would be quite fearful because I would know that I wasn't up to the challenge. I would also physically find it impossible to do a 10 mile run and all of these things are the feedback that I'm talking about from the subconscious and life that would make it incredibly hard for me to streatch myself this far from where I am.
This sort of resistance also happens when you start something completely new as your subconscious has no data that you are able to do what you set out to do even if logically you should be able to do it.
For example (I am gonna stick with the exercising because it's in my head) if I haven't exercised for a really, really long time and I decided I'm going to start exercising. Just that initial step into exercising will cause my subconscious to produce lots of resistant thoughts. Thoughts such as I don’t need to do it today I could do it tomorrow, uncertainty, or making something else a priority. All of these thoughts are your subconscious creating doubt because the streatch is too great. This is important for you to know so that should you decide to do something new (even though logically you think it's not a big thing) make sure that you make the steps small so that the resistance from your subconscious is something you can manage without giving up.
Finally I found when I started becoming aware of all of this that I was quite good at keeping my word with other people but I was not as good at keeping it to myself. Watch what you say you are going to do internally as well as externally.
To summarise - if you want to increase your self belief you need to be setting yourself challenges that stretch you at least 20%. You need to be achieving those challenges and completing them at least 80% or more of the time to be able to increase your self belief. On top of that you also need to be very aware of what you commit to and what you promise because these are also like mini challenges. The more that you are your word and the more that you keep your word the more that your subconscious will believe that you’re somebody who can and does and that’s really all there is to it!
It sounds really simple but I know it's not always as simple as it sounds. Don't be too hard on yourself in the initial stages you might fall down and you might slip up but if you keep trying then you will find this an incredibly powerful tool that can transform your whole entire life. Not only that but there is magic in playing in this space and when you can consistently acheive your challenges 80% of the time or more it is as if life starts playing with you as well. You will notice that there are more synchronicity’s and coincidences than ever before and who doesn’t want some of that in life!
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So much love from me to you