Here’s the thing about beliefs. They are simply that. Beliefs. I like to think of them as ‘programs’ we have come to live our lives by, which are often decades out of date.
In June, I took a three-day NLP training course as part of my journey to qualification. The two trainers, Ann Skidmore and Sarah Urquhart, are at the top of their game. I was eager to volunteer so I could experience their quality work. I had my chance with Sarah who took me through a powerful process that identified a belief I’d been living my whole life by. For some reason, I always felt that I should tone it done.
I was finally able to put what I’d been living with in a vague way, for my whole remembered life, into focus. While it hasn’t stopped me achieving many dreams along the way, it’s felt like a steep uphill journey to get to this point. I was now ready to flatten out the landscape, which is the beauty of Life Coaching and NLP. By working with a practitioner, you will discover you no longer have to accept struggle. You will find a more comfortable way of going about things. What’s not to love?
It was becoming increasingly clear, that worrying about toning it down was not serving me. It created a conflict, every time I came up with a new idea – hence the uphill struggle.
I’d also begun to entertain the idea, that maybe I didn’t need to worry about this anymore. This isn’t to say that NLP was going to enable me to walk around, screaming my throat raw, bursting blood vessels in my eyes. It’s important to make this point because it gives an explanation for why that belief was there in the first place. It did, at some point, serve a purpose.
At aged three, say, when I learnt to ‘tone it down’ – to not scream until my eyeballs popped – I didn’t have the discernment that I do at aged 39, running my own business. The NLP process would help me to see and accept this belief, and then give it ‘Museum Status’, where it could be honoured for doing its job of teaching me not to scream my throat into shreds when, say, my ball of ice-cream fell off my cone. And I’m grateful for that lesson: can you imagine how well that behaviour would have gone down on a first date?
Halfway through the process, I got to choose a new belief to live by, one that – thanks to Sarah’s capability and knowledge – I slowly began to believe and then own.
‘I am great at what I do!’
There, it’s so fully embedded, I’ve no problem sharing it with you all.
Here’s the thing about beliefs. They are simply that. A belief is not reality. It may feel helpful to say, ‘pay no attention’, when a friend tells you they’re worried about what people think, but the very act of telling them to pay no attention, is simply confirming to the program in their mind that there is something to pay attention to. This helpfully intended advice, will simply give credence to their belief, lending it substance.
Beliefs are not reality.
Coaching and NLP can help us make them wobble, so that we see they are not reality.
This was how I was able to let the sense I needed to tone it down go. A flicker came across the screen, so that I thought, ‘hang on a second, this isn’t real!’
Sure, I have probably been told to shut up many times in my life, but it wasn’t like every time I opened my mouth someone said, ‘SHHH!’.
In making your beliefs wobble, you imagine looking at the world through a different lens. When creating my new belief, I asked myself, ‘Who doesn’t want me to tone it down?’
I remembered that one time a kind lady said to me, ‘I read your blog and I loved it.’
There was that lovely email I received after my last event from a woman who said she left ‘feeling really excited about life.’
And, thanks to Sarah, I was able to find a place where I began to chuckle about this old belief. Silly me.
Don’t take your beliefs to the grave. Give them the chance to have their place in a Museum, while you, finally, get to take your true place in life.