What influences your outlook on life and your goal-setting? Experiences, family, friends, education, society, and religion all have had some impact on your outlook and your goal-setting. You may be aware of some influences but others may be buried deep in your subconscious. How do you unearth the hidden beliefs you had no conscious idea cause you to think and behave a certain way?
Here’s a game you can play: think about a really big goal of yours, and allow all of your emotions to come into the light. Pay attention to all of them. It’s really important to allow all of them, especially the negative ones, surface. Don’t deny any emotion because it’s a clear signal that there is some underlying belief that will probably cause you to take actions to sabotage yourself. This is one of those situations where talking about these emotions with a coach can be helpful. You’ll need an objective point of view to counter all the rationalizations and excuses that will come up – and they will! Are your emotions surrounding money positive, negative or neutral? How about your emotions about your self-worth? Or your importance? Or your attractiveness? So pay attention to the negative emotions, and think back to what influenced those feelings in you. It can be hard to dig up those old memories, but if you’re going to move forward, you’ll have to make yourself do it. Just the once is enough! Once those old memories are out in the open, you can let those emotions go. The thing is (and again, you may need an objective set of ears) you really have to decide once and for all that you choose to NOT be influenced by what happened in the past. You have to decide that you do NOT agree with what people said about you or to you, or did to you. I’m going to say right now that this is not an easy process! But at the same time, once you’ve done it, it’s incredibly liberating. You are not the person you were then! You’ve evolved, you’ve experienced other things. You know that you can choose whether to react or respond to some negative thing/person. You can choose to accept a person’s unkindness and let it become part of your belief system – or not! You can choose to let painful experiences become part of your belief system – or not! As a simple example, let’s say your mother-in-law says disapproving things about your parenting. You can choose to let it ruin your day… or not. You can choose to let her opinion become part of your belief system… or not. If Tom had always been told that he is incompetent and lazy, chances are that he subconsciously agreed with it. But did he become incompetent and lazy because he truly was, or because it was drilled into his head by his parents? Let’s say he just found out that he had a choice whether to agree with his parents – and he chose to disagree with them. What do you think happened? Everything we do as adults has a “past”. Everything is influenced by something that happened in the past, or something we learned. The real beauty of the situation is that once you know this, you can choose to agree with other people’s beliefs. You can also choose to agree with your reactions to situations and follow those old patterns for ever, or not. You can look at beliefs you accepted and decide whether you agree with them or not. How liberating! It’s not easy to break free and follow your own beliefs (the ones NOT borrowed from others or from past experiences). But the rewards are beyond anything you can possibly accomplish while you agree to be bound by the past.