In doing research for an upcoming workshop I came across the most interesting concept and proceeding question. It really got me thinking. The concept was this, that we are so attached to our beliefs that even when shown a better way, we stubbornly stick to the status quo.
I began to consider this concept and I was SOLD on the author being right, after about 30 seconds. We are attached to most of our beliefs simply because they have typically become an ingrained habit. We have been doing it this way for "X" number of years and we're perfectly happy continuing to do it this way, thank you very much and let me be clear here, I'm not saying all beliefs are bad, not by a longshot. I invite you to keep reading.
Think about your own life, think about something you have had a belief in, even if it's not serving you any longer. A believe that you have not taken the time to reconsider or better yet break, if need be. It's staggering how many things we just do because "I always have" or "I've done it for years" or "I was taught that as a kid."
A simple example would be that you are quick to anger. You've always been quick to anger, your mom was a "hot head", you are a "hot head" and with a hair-trigger temper to boot! You learn that all anger comes from fear, you contemplate that thought and realize, it's true. You are now at a perverbial crossroad. You have this new awareness, you can cling to the belief that you come from a maternal line of "hot heads" and continue to live out of that space or you can do a little soul searching, understand they underlying reason you are an angry person and break the belief. Break the family chain, so to speak. Easy? No. Liberating. Oh yea!
Our beliefs completely shape our lives. If we believe it, we are devoted to it but our devotion I'm finding is extremely limiting. Why on earth if we become privvy to a new concept, a new way to live, are we so damn stuck in the old?
Two things I see. First, back to being utterly beholden to the things we believe and unless we make some space around those beliefs, unless we question their relevance as they pop up, like asking ourselves "Does this belief limit me?" "Did it serve me well at one point but does nothing for me now?" "Is it a rigid belief that's been passed down through my family but honestly does NOTHING to better me now?" we will forever be giving our energy to something that can range from a lackluster story in our lives to downright harmful.
Second, our egos are incredible. They are an incredible waste of time, typically. So let's say you encounter a new way of being via a converstaion with a friend, you dig the concept but it challenges one of your tightly-held beliefs. In this case, not only would you have to have the strength to override that belief but your ego would have to be "in-check" enough to take on this new way via a friend. What if that friend finds out? Would you feel "less than" because it came from them and you chose to take the ball and run with it?
We seem to be quite stubborn when it comes to letting old concepts go and adopting new ones so we can live happier, freer lives, but the thing is, we can detach from limiting beliefs any time we make the choice to. We can bring the "fresh air" of new ways of thinking and being into that "stuffy room" simply by opening the window of awareness. Awarness of the things that are holding you back, that are limiting your expressions of creativity and love, awareness of new things that can move you forward, awareness that when you recapture the energy you've put into something that isn't working, you now have the ability to "plug it into" something that could.
It's your life for goodness sake. It's so short not to live it fully, to not be intentional about being free and happy. It all begins with you challenging some of your beliefs and simply asking yourself the question...