Question Your Beliefs, Improve Your Results

James Allen is the author of one the best books of all time, and one of my personal favorites, “As A Man Thinketh.” It’s a short read and I strive to read it at least once a year. It never gets old; in fact, it keeps getting better.  He said:

The outer conditions of a person’s life will always be found to reflect their inner beliefs.” 

This is a powerful truth. I find that many of the brilliant, talented, vibrant moms I coach are usually stuck in beliefs that don’t serve them. When we focus on these “limiting beliefs,” as many would call them, they inhibit us, prevent us, and block us from achieving our full potential.

It’s been proven scientifically that our beliefs affect our biology, and that most of our subconscious programming happens between the ages of 0 and 7 years old. I once heard bestselling author Louise Hay say “we move through life creating experiences that will match those beliefs” we learned as little children. I didn’t want to believe my 7-year-old self would be running my life, but the more I studied my patterns, I realized that it was exactly what was happening. Scaaaary!

Your results reflect your beliefs - Elayna Fernandez ~ The Positive MOM

Elephants make for a great metaphor of outdated beliefs that hold us back… unfortunately. These massive, majestic, monumental creatures are often held back by a small rope that (unlike a metal chain or a cage) they could easily break away from, but they stay in bondage. Why? Because when they are small, they use the same type and size rope to hold them, and they simply grow up with the belief that it cannot break free from it… and they never really try to.

Of course, I can admit to having many elephant moments in my life in which I actually attempted to do something and felt kind of silly afterward because I realized it was A LOT easier than I thought it would be; but this fact always makes me wonder what are those things I haven’t attempted to do because of a belief that is no longer serving me.

Some of the most inspiring people I know are individuals who achieve remarkable things despite of what most of us perceive great limitations: they have no limbs, or sight, they have a terminal disease, they have a mental illness, or have been through scarring traumatic moments from which would seem unbelievable to turn from.

For most of us, our limits are really beliefs, or thoughts we hold as true. Our beliefs literally run our lives. Think about it: everything you do deliberately, you do it because you believe it will create a certain result. Everything you decide not to do, you avoid doing because of the expectation of a dreaded result, as well.

A limiting belief is simply a limiting thought that we give power and attention to. These beliefs lead into a limiting decision, which lead to actions that limit our potential because we don’t pursue the life we were meant to enjoy or the growth we were meant to experience.

If you’re feeling stuck, or like you’re going in circles, or even worse, backwards, that’s probably a sign that it’s time to question your beliefs, shift your perception, and change your expectations.

What does it mean to question your beliefs?

Sometimes I say “question your beliefs” and people seem confused because I’m very open about the spiritual path I walk. I’m not talking about religion. I am simply on a mission bringing awareness about the fact that we see the world, not as it is, but as we are.

We all have disempowering beliefs, self-doubt, fear, and negative self-talk. It’s just part of our nature and what keeps us humble and open to learning. That being said, it is our purpose to grow, to evolve, and to progress. Being willing to change our beliefs helps us move forward along the journey toward where we are meant to be.

I was once having a conversation with a childhood friend who was telling me all about why she couldn’t succeed. She was stuck on all these rules of success:

To be successful, she said, you need to:

  • have a budget
  • be a marketer
  • know copywriting
  • have SEO skills
  • learn code
  • have speaking experience
  • have free time away from the kids
  • get a mani-pedi and go to the salon once a week
  • drive a luxury car so people take you seriously
  • have a big e-mail list
  • have time to travel
  • have money to invest
  • have a college degree
  • have video equipment
  • always look impeccable and picture perfect
  • have a supportive husband
  • have a “real room” as a home office…

The list went on… and, of course, she didn’t have any of this… so she didn’t allow herself to try. She just kept waiting until she had all these things, which weren’t going to just “show up,” mainly because she didn’t believe they would.

I also wanted to be successful, and I had less than she did. I was a single mom, with a 40+ hour job, living in a one-bedroom roach-infested apartment, no money in the bank, no marketing funnel, and the only followers I had were guys trying to hit on me on MySpace. I knew I had to be successful, and although I thought all the things on the list would help, this was my belief about success:

  • If you want it, and put all your focus and effort on it, it will be yours!

Which one of these beliefs were true?  Does it matter? They could both be true, they could both be false. I am not asking you to question whether your beliefs are true or false, I’m asking you to question whether they are beneficial or detrimental to you.

Is this belief helping me create the life I want?

I always had that belief about success, which is one of the most powerful reasons why I don’t live in extreme poverty anymore and I have been able to experience a life that was only possible in my imagination. I believed I was going to be successful… and my faith allowed me to take the right steps toward it.

In contrast, I had beliefs about love that drove me to participate in unhealthy, abusive, and incongruent relationships. It took much self-reflection and inner-work to uncover the core beliefs of my 7-year-old self and to dismantle the evidence that went along with those. Now I can say I am finally making empowering choices in the area of relationship, and therefore, I am much happier.

Ye shall know them by their fruits. ~ Matthew 7:16

What are some of your beliefs around success, joy, balance, family, relationships, health, and money? If your outer circumstances are not in alignment with what your soul desires, then it’s time to examine which beliefs need upgrading.

How do I change my beliefs?

Since I’ve already mentioned that I changed my beliefs about relationship, you’re probably wondering how limiting beliefs are changed.

I was lying on the ground, bleeding, and unable to move while my ex was kicking me and telling me how worthless I was when I had an epiphany… I am a daughter of God!” Many of you will go “duh!” but it’s all about the wolf we feed.

The first step is to realize (or simply remind yourself) you’re an elephant. You are a giant, powerful, unstoppable being with divine worth and not only do you possess incredible gifts, you have the potential to grow, expand, and increase! When you question your beliefs, always start from the vision of the life you desire to experience, because that is possible for you… and MORE!

The second step is to give focus, weight, and positive attention to a new belief. If you think about it, our beliefs are thoughts we have not only thought over and over, but like Louise Hay says, we have found supporting evidence that confirm them. One moment of thinking I am worthy of the love God talks about was not going to erase all the years of abuse and feelings of unworthiness. We must immerse ourselves in the new beliefs. It’s literally like learning a new language – it takes a lot of time, dedication, and practice.

To adopt new beliefs, we must dismiss the old beliefs and look to fill our minds with evidence that supports the beliefs we want. For me, I went to training seminars, workshops, conferences, courses, self-help books and programs, affirmations, and associating with people who had empowering beliefs that created the results I wanted. I do this all the time and I only mentor moms who are willing and open to try these “techniques” because they are important steps in the path to transformation.

The third step is to give up the payoff. While our limiting beliefs don’t serve our higher purpose, they do reward us in some way. That’s why we haven’t changed them. I would have never let my ex hit me or call me names if I wasn’t afraid of being alone. I believed that being alone would be more painful. I was also probably afraid to look inside and unmask all the trauma I had from being physically and verbally abused as a child. I liked that he wrote me apology love letters, gave me flowers, and “proved his love” after he mercilessly beat me up.

My belief that “he loved me and he is sorry” and “I love him and I must forgive him” was holding me captive. I love him and I forgive him is still true to me, and so is I love myself and I forgive myself, which is a more empowering belief, and from which I strive to make my decisions today.

I had a mentee (let’s call her Mandy) who was a single mom. She wanted to empower single moms and one of the Top 5 Passions she envisioned was to enjoy a loving, trusting, and fun relationship with her eternal soulmate. I told her I was so excited for her and that I believe that beautiful vision would happen for her. She, however, proceeded to explain:

It probably won’t happen. All the good men are taken. I have too much baggage. Men only want single moms to have a good time, but won’t commit. No one wants to have an instant child and carry this much responsibility. I don’t have time to date. I need to focus on being a mom for now and then later I can try to find someone. I’ll focus on my business first. I can do this on my own. This will inspire single moms. I don’t necessarily need a man.  It will happen if it’s meant to be…

She was using her wonderful desires to focus on building her business and being an independent successful woman, as a bandaid to cover up that she longed for a deep connection with a man, yet she was afraid of being hurt again, so she kept herself too busy for love.

Soon she used her limiting beliefs as inspiration to create beliefs that supported what she wanted. It went something like this:

It will happen. He is available. He will accept me with everything I am, I was, and I will evolve to be. He will desire to commit to me. He will love my child as his and will embrace the responsibility that comes with that. I am available for him. I can be a great mom and a great wife. I can be a great wife and a rocking business woman. I can do this on my own, yet I choose to allow myself to receive support. I will inspire single moms who want to find love to know it is possible.  I desire a man. I am looking forward to it and I will remain willing and open to allow it to happen.

She gave up the pay off  of not having to open herself up to a new relationship, and the false sense of pride of “doing it all by herself,” and eventually, she gained a partner who respects her, supports her, and is devoted to making her smile.

I’ve mentored other women who feel cared for when they receive pity. I usually break this pattern, because it is my responsibility to guide them to a better payoff, to help them find a new way of looking at the situation and reframe it from a more empowering place.

Their limiting beliefs usually come up in our time together and although the nurturer in me wants to just hug them tight, I take the route of breaking their pattern and presenting a contrasting belief that would help them question theirs.

My work is amazing because it’s really tough on my ego LOL. I used to believe I had to “be agreeable to be nice” and thank goodness I challenged that belief and I can get out of my own way to serve moms in living their highest purpose – and on their individual terms.

What about you? When you look around, do you see results you like? I always say results don’t lie.  If your results are not in alignment with what you really want to be, do, or have, it’s time to question your beliefs, even though they sound reasonable and valid, because in doing so, you may just improve your life and create the life you crave.

I’d love to hear from you about limiting beliefs that have held you back and how you changed them.  Will you please share them with us?

Elayna Fernandez - Author - Speaker - Success Guide to Moms and Mompreneurs
© Elayna Fernández ~ The Positive MOM
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56 thoughts on “Question Your Beliefs, Improve Your Results

  1. Wow. I had never thought about my seven year old self still running my life. I have been thinking lately about what holds me back on things and it is mainly fear. I need to believe in my self worth. Thanks so much for sharing a post that gave me a much needed eye opening.

  2. I look around, and I do see results that I love. Then again, there are some I’m not completely satisfied with either. I think we all have room for improvement.

  3. Being aware of what is holding you back or taking you down is very important. I was just speaking with someone today about this myself. Once you know, you can do something about it. I always questioned my beliefs, and they have changed over time, now I do what feels right

  4. The one thing I have actually been good at in my life is knowing what I want and working to get it. I am not saying it was easy but with hard work and persistence I actually got to achieve all of my dream jobs.

  5. Great points made here. I think it’s a part of growing to reassess our beliefs. It’s far to easy to stay stagnant in our beliefs though, so many of us don’t often change our way of thinking.

  6. This is true. God encourages us to focus on whatever is true, whatever is right…. when we do that, the inner dialogue caused by human failures has no room to keep talking. Focus on the Lord, his plan, his way and the voices just go away!

  7. This is a great post. I will have to think about the changes i can make to improve my life and happiness.

  8. The elephant is a great metaphor strong and powerful. I used to be told in school I had elephant legs they were short and stumpy. My legs are still short and stumpy kinda but they are powerful actually the strongest part of my body.
    This post reminds of that famous quote if you always do what you have always done you will always get what you have always got.

  9. I am so thankful that I started blogging in 2010. It was just for fun at first to see if I was any good at it. After I got laid off, I started writing daily and sharing my work. I started attracting a following. This is how Uplifting Families was born. I’m thankful for the opportunities that it has given me. I am stubborn sometimes when it comes to doing new things. I like to do things that I know that work.

  10. During our formative years, many of those experiences shape who we are as adults; good, bad, or indifferent. Being able to maximize or work through those experiences will ultimately catapult us to greater experiences.

  11. I love this post. It is just like telling us to never lose focus on the goal. I have had so many ups and downs in my career, and I admit, I have not yet achieved what I want to, but I am getting there. I believe I will.

  12. It was always assumed I would go to college-become a teacher, nurse, bookkeeper etc–well–I did go to college but kept dropping out because it was not what I wanted–I wanted a science degree! I did manage at age 40 to go back and finish a science degree–and please note it was not so much my parents but the school guidance counselors who kept me to the mind set that I was just not good enough!

  13. I have some of these things on the list, but not all. I feel successful, though, because I believe it. 🙂

  14. I wish I didn’t go back in forth from one moment believing I can to another minute thinking I can’t. I do have more moments that I believe I can. We rewire our brains and it’s amazing what we can achieve.

  15. Since I’ve been growing my blog for the last few years, I’ve been receiving new and exciting experiences that terrify me. I’m glad they take me out of my comfort zone because they have let me learn all kinds of new things and have such great experiences.

  16. I do know quite a few people that are tied into and appear to be held back because of the way they were raised or emotions from their childhood. To be honest, I loved my childhood and sometimes I revert back to thinking about the way things were way back when and how wonderful they were. My childhood has only had a positive impact on my adult life. I have never felt that my 7 year old self was running my life.

    I really can’t think of any limiting beliefs that have held me back.

  17. This is totally an awesome post and very good topic. I had limited my believes from having to go disability and was told by the doctors that my condition would never change. I was a person that always had to stay busy and could do it all. I have made a change by doing things I thought I would never be able to do by working with an amazing blogger who changed my life forever. We should not limit our self and we really do have to go for what we want. Thanks for sharing.

  18. I’m really working on this, especially not taking rejection personally. I know that it’s just the nature of the beast, but I often feel like someone doesn’t like me because they don’t like my piece.

  19. I’m incredibly intrigued by this. I honestly can’t even begin to think of all the beliefs I might be using to limit myself, and I want to give this a more careful read. I’m also very interested in that book.

  20. I think all of the things in the list is important but I think determination is the most important quality. Determination allows you to push through when others say you can’t/

  21. This was a great read. I admit, sometimes my beliefs can hold me back from doing things that I really want to but from now on I’ll make more of an effort to think twice before I turn anything down.

  22. I absolutely believe it’s true that we limit ourselves because of socialized internalization so once we step over the boundaries of those limitations, with boldness and faith, we realize abilities that were within us all along.

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  24. It took me a while, but I finally learned not to wait for things. I realized that I didn’t need these things to be important or valuable. I learned to go out and make things happen for myself.

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