The Guiding Force: How Personal beliefs shape Your Life

Your work, your business, your golf game, your life — what do you believe?
Beliefs are like internal “rules” about how things are, how things ought to be, how life works and even about what is possible for us.

You don’t have to look much farther than the political arena to witness how personal beliefs play out when it comes time to vote.  Our beliefs are like our personal compass, shaping how we see the world and live our lives. They act as “rules” to bring order to our daily routines, influencing the choices we make and how we view life. Beliefs act as guiding principles in every area of our lives.

What Beliefs are Built On

Beliefs are strong convictions that come from our upbringing, culture, experiences, and reflections. They form the basis for our views on morality, purpose, and the world. Whether they come from religion, philosophy, or culture, these beliefs are indeed like unwritten rules that govern our behavior.

Making Choices Based on Beliefs

Similar to how rules help us make decisions, personal beliefs act as a filter for assessing choices. They create values that guide us in pursuing happiness, success, and fulfillment. For instance, someone with a strong environmental ethic may make choices that support sustainability, while others focused on personal growth may prioritize learning and self-improvement.

How Beliefs Impact Relationships

Personal beliefs play a crucial role in shaping relationships. They contribute to shared values in communities, families, and friendships. People often connect with others who share similar beliefs, fostering unity. Conflicts may arise when beliefs clash, showing how these unwritten rules influence social dynamics.

Finding Purpose in Beliefs

Just as rules give structure and purpose to activities, personal beliefs give individuals a sense of purpose and direction. Believing in a higher power, the pursuit of knowledge, or compassion can add meaning to life. These touchstones inspire and provide a roadmap during tough times.

Limiting Beliefs and Their Impact on Your Life

Personal beliefs strongly influence our lives. Acting as “rules” for behavior, decision-making, relationships, and purpose, beliefs offer a unique framework for navigating life’s complexities. 

When it comes to living a life that works for you, one that is fulfilling and happy, it’s a necessity to get your beliefs/rules “right”.  And by “right” I mean, so that they support and empower you in your endeavors in both your personal and professional life.

During the first 6 or so years of our life, we soak up everything we hear and our young brains believe it to be true. During these years we develop our most powerful, and often times most life-limiting, beliefs that can stick with us for the rest of our lives. 

All of this information is held in our subconscious, and it’s there to keep us safe. It’s how we learn that the stove is hot because it burnt our hand, or how we know to look both ways before crossing the street because our parents drilled that home with us every single day.

However, some of these beliefs hold us back in life and keep us in a state of fear and doubt. Typical limiting beliefs take the form of:

  • “I can’t do that because”
  • “I don’t deserve that because”
  • “If I do this something bad is going to happen”
  • “I can’t do this because people will think”

Does any of that narrative sound familiar? 

Here are 10 questions that will help dig a little deeper into your subconscious and identify your (possible) limiting beliefs.

1.  What belief has held you back the most?

It might be hard to identify all of your limiting beliefs, and yet we can all pinpoint at least one belief that has held us back throughout our lives. 

It might not be obvious in the moment, although if we look back on the things we’ve done we can usually see it.

Maybe you didn’t apply for the job of Assistant Golf Professional because you didn’t think you were “smart enough.” Or that trip around the world you wanted to take never happened because you didn’t think that was “responsible” and you went straight to college instead. Maybe you missed out on applying for Q-school because you were too afraid of finding out you didn’t have what it takes. 

2.  Why do you believe this?

Now that you’ve identified your biggest limiting belief, ask yourself this question until you run out of answers. Maybe something happened to you when you were a kid. Maybe something happened to you last week. Maybe you’ve just never been told it’s okay.  Write down every answer you come up with so you can explore them later. 

3.  What evidence proves your belief wrong?

Most beliefs are just that, beliefs. Beliefs and facts are two very different things. Snow is cold. We know that because we can feel it. There’s no debate to that fact. It can be measured. 

The fact that you believe you aren’t smart enough for your dream job is subjective and just your opinion. There’s no way to prove it with 100% certainty. If you look around I’m sure you can find someone “not as smart as you” doing exactly what you’d love to do. The only thing stopping you is your belief. 

4.  What have you missed out on in life because of your belief?

Sticking to the job example, how different would your life be right now if you applied for it? Your life would most likely be completely different. Even if you applied and didn’t get it, you could’ve learned something valuable from the person interviewing you. If nothing else, you would’ve learned that it’s okay to take chances.  

5.  Is there any truth in your belief?

Is there truth to your belief? Has something happened to you recently to reinforce the belief? Or is it something you’ve believed for as long as you can remember and you don’t really know why? 

If you can’t think of anything to confirm your belief that has happened within a year, it’s time to reevaluate. And be sure not to put too much weight in the opinions of others.  They also hold limiting beliefs that they project on others. 

6.  Question its impact.

What happens if you challenge your belief? Let’s say you wake up one morning and tell yourself you’re not going to let that belief control your decisions anymore. Does your life change for the better? 

Do you allow yourself to do things that you’ve never done before? Do those things change your life for the better? Usually, the worst thing that can happen is we get “feedback”.  And with that feedback, we wake up the next morning with another chance to consider another way to do things the next time.

7.  What are you afraid of?

What’s the worst possible thing that could happen if you challenge your belief? How does this change your daily life? Most of our fears boil down to being rejected, humiliated, embarrassed, isolated, and so on. How debilitating would these things be if they were to happen? Is bettering your life and giving up the belief worth the risk?

8.  How are you contributing?

What are you doing on a regular basis that’s contributing to your limiting belief? Are you reinforcing your negative emotions related to the belief? Are you letting the opinions of others influence what you believe? Are you avoiding doing things that would eliminate the belief? Write down all the ways you might be contributing to the belief so you can start changing those behaviors.

9.  What would you have to give up if you overcame this belief?

What part of yourself would you lose if you gave up your belief? Would it be missed by you or the people around you? Would it make you a better person? Would it move your life in the right direction and create more opportunities? Sometimes our biggest fear is the fear of being more than we ever thought we were capable of. Make sure you aren’t holding yourself back on purpose.

10.  What would you gain if you overcame this belief?

How much better would your life be if you simply stopped believing in something that has no weight to it? Think of the freedom you could gain. Think of how much happier you could be. Would you even be able to make the lives of people around you better if you were to overcome this belief? Most success and happiness is just on the other side of a negative belief. Make sure you aren’t keeping yourself from getting there.

Ask yourself these questions whenever you find yourself thinking “I can’t” or “I shouldn’t” or “I don’t deserve it.”  Make sure that thought is an actual fact and not just a limiting belief that’s holding you back.

If you’d like to make some changes in your life and help with letting go of your limiting beliefs, check out our options.