A lot of people think that their beliefs are like clothes. They don't have much choice in the matter. They just walk up to their closet, pick out what's there, wear it, and move on to the next set of clothes the next day.
If that’s your attitude, regarding your beliefs, it's no surprise that you are not living your life to your fullest potential. Whether this means enjoying the best job, making the most money in your field, enjoying the best relationships, or looking physically fit, beliefs play a major role in your life. No matter how clueless you are about its role, beliefs will continue to remain important in your life.
Where Do Beliefs Draw Their Power?
Beliefs are like glasses. Depending on the grade of your glasses, the world may look clear, or it may look very fuzzy, and you might even have a nasty headache when using glasses that have the wrong grade.
Beliefs work the same way. When you perceive reality, and I am talking about the things that you can see, hear, touch, taste, and smell, they must be filtered by something in your head. This is called your belief system.
When you filter this information, you give it meaning. You give it color. You give it a certain slant or angle. What do you think will happen next? Your analysis of the things that you choose to perceive impacts the things you say, the things you do, and the things you feel about yourself and the rest of the world.
In other words, this information is worth heeding, but the problem is a lot of people think that since they think a certain way that this is reality. They confuse objective reality, which they believe everyone could agree with, with their subjective take on their perception.
Also, other people excuse their warped way of perceiving reality by saying that that is just who they are or it is part of their personality. How dare people question them!
Beliefs are chosen. Just as you can choose your clothes, you can choose your beliefs. I am not saying that it is easy. Beliefs become habitual after a while. I would advise you not to hang onto a belief system that does not improve your condition because it is just flat-out wrong and harms you. There is something about the belief system that you have chosen that gives you enough benefits for it to be worth hanging onto.
It is like wearing raggedy shoes. You have old shoes in your home. They look nasty and they could even smell like a rat died in them but, for whatever reason, you like wearing those shoes because they are comfortable. You know that they are not the best option to go with that suit you want to wear to that dinner party, they do not perform all that well, but you prefer their comfort. They do well enough and serve you well enough, so you keep them around and you use them day to day.
The same applies to your beliefs. Many belief systems have simply outlived their purpose
or usefulness. We need to take a long, hard look at our beliefs and ask ourselves some challenging questions. Otherwise, we will be living far below our potential. We would continue to look at reality with tools that do not serve us. That is the tragedy of hanging on to a belief system that does not serve you.
To your success,
William J. McClelland CLC, CNC, MPNLP
Disclaimer: Please understand that the content of this article is not meant to replace the advice of a licensed physician. The information provided here is intended as educational material only and should never be interpreted as medical advice. If you feel your condition is a medical emergency, please immediately contact your physician or mental healthcare professional.