The Commanding Power of Belief
"The outer conditions of a person's life will always be found to reflect their inner beliefs."
- James Allen
The Power of Belief affects everything we experience in our lives. Things show up in our lives because of what we believe, consciously or subconsciously. The opposite is also true; nothing shows up if we don’t believe it will.
How do we get our beliefs?
Our belief system is something that grows with us from pre-birth to the present moment and is a large part of what we use to create the imaginary image of our selves and our ego. Most of our beliefs we absorb from people around us, primarily family and friends. There is a snowball effect. As we grow older we tend to reinforce our own beliefs by surrounding ourselves with people that share our beliefs.
Throughout life we are told who or what we are. We are bombarded with comments and remarks which are simply distorted opinions of others attempting to describe who we are. Our beliefs act as filters and control everything we think, our reactions and our emotions. Whether we like it or not, beliefs run our lives. When things aren’t going the way we like it’s because of the power of belief.
In his book The Power of Intention Dr. Wayne Dyer discusses how we tend to view ourselves as a product of our possessions, achievements and failures. By viewing ourselves this way we create our imaginary self simply based on our history and this becomes who we believe we are. This flawed process compounds into a very limited belief of our potential.
The truth is we have the potential to do or be anything if we will let go of our limiting beliefs. Overcoming limiting beliefs is very important because they are usually based on fear and fear will make you weak and paralyze any chance you have of adopting new positive beliefs in their place.
Mark Twain described his own experience this way: “I am a very old man and have suffered a great many misfortunes, most of which never happened.”
Why do we put ourselves through the agony and stress of our negative and limiting beliefs? The answer is we don’t have to and when you realize this it becomes progressively easier to stop and recognize the true power of belief.
How do we get the power of belief to work in our favor?
Our brains don't know the difference between internal and external "reality." External reality being what is detected by any one or combination of our five senses (touch, sight, smell, taste and sound) and internal being your thoughts. This explains why the power of belief has such an influence on our lives and why it is so important to recognize how powerful our thoughts are, both negative and positive.
Knowing this should motivate us to be the master of our thoughts and beliefs and not the other way around. Unfortunately, our emotions often get in the way and emotions are the favorite food of our negative beliefs.
How to change your beliefs:
- If you want to change, stop thinking and believing that you are a product of your past and start acting and behaving like the person you want to be. Remember your brain doesn’t know the difference. Start thinking and believing that you already are what you wish to be and in as much detail as possible. At first, this will take a strong constant conscious effort. Like most things though the more you do it the more natural it becomes. YOU CAN BE OR DO WHATEVER YOU THINK YOU CAN! This is the power of belief. You already use it; you just have to agree to shift the power of who you are away from your old self to the strong powerful spirit that you really are.
- You cannot escape the power of belief but you can control it. Practice being your own watcher and catch yourself thinking, acting, reacting, behaving or making decisions based on fear that limit or deny what you actually deserve, earned or are capable of doing. Silently laugh and refuse to give in to those “old” limiting thoughts… tell your self to stop it!
- Nothing ever changes if you don’t do anything different. If you recognize your belief system to be limiting and full of fear, make it your intention to take action. Action always cures fear!
- Using a mirror is a proven technique for changing your beliefs. In his 1948 classic The Magic of Believing Claude Bristol describes the mirror technique like this – “Those of you who have been in the army know what it means to come to attention – stand fully erect, bring your heels together, pull in your stomach, keep your chest out and your head up. Now breathe deeply three or four times until you feel a sense of power, strength, and determination. Next, look into the very depths of your eyes, tell yourself that you are going to get what you want – name it aloud so you can see your lips move and you can hear the words uttered. Make a regular ritual of it, practice doing it at least twice a day, mornings and evenings – and you will be surprised at the results.”
Make a habit of looking at yourself in the mirror whenever you can and repeat an affirmation or mantra that reflects the change you want. For example, when trying to overcome illness say “I am strong and healthy.” If trying to lose weight say “I am lean and beautiful.” Make up your own and keep it positive. Remember to never think or say what you don’t want because that will just attract more of the same.
- Give no credence to what others belief of you. Be connected to your spirit and listen to the persistent little voice inside. That voice that has the answers to these questions: What would you do or how would you be, or where would you live if you knew you could do it without any fear or limitations or resources you don’t currently have? What would you like your life to be like? What job or business would you have? What would you look like? How would you dress? Put your answers down on paper or index cards and read them daily. Imagine yourself already being this person. Befriend people that are more like the person you want to be. Dress more like this person. Believe you already are this person, in your new life, and soon you’ll surely be! Use the power of belief to your advantage, don't let it control you!
- Finally, you must prepare yourself to receive what you ask for. You can think positively, dismiss limiting beliefs and visualize a new you, but nothing is likely to change if you aren’t ready or accepting of the change. In Think and Grow Rich Napoleon Hill wrote “There is a difference between wishing for a thing and being ready to receive it. No one is ready for a thing until he believes he can acquire it. The state of mind must be belief, not mere hope or wish. Open-mindedness is essential for belief. Closed minds do not inspire faith, courage, and belief.”
I highly recommend reading Claude Bristol's The Magic of Believing. Mr. Bristol ends this great book by saying, "Just believe that there is genuine creative magic in believing - and magic there will be, for belief will supply the power which will enable you to succeed in everything you undertake. Back your belief with a resolute will and you become unconquerable - a master of men among men - yourself."
Good luck as you practice these techniques and learn to master the power of belief.
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