It’s kind of bad news but it’s true: some thoughts that you’ve been running around with your entire life aren’t actually true at all!
However, most people find this idea a tough pill to swallow. Of course, we all know we’re logical people and we have years of real-world experience to back up our beliefs. So our beliefs all seem very real to us!
And that all might very well be true! But it’s also true that your brain will literally filter the world to match up with your beliefs.
It’s also true that most of those beliefs of yours aren’t causing any harm at all. But other beliefs are actively getting in the way of your happiness and success.
They’re actually limiting beliefs: beliefs that we hold that actually harm us in one way or another.
When it comes to being a Conscious Creator and manifesting the life of your dreams, these beliefs are one of your biggest enemies! They’ll trip you up and cause you to self-sabotage your own success and you won’t even notice that it’s happening.
Though I talk a lot on the site about limiting beliefs, today I wanted to share some concrete examples with you. These are the lies you’ve been conditioned to believe in. Because so many of us have been taught to us over and over again, it’s all too easy to go your entire life believing in them. But that doesn’t mean that they’re true! Sometimes you need someone (like me!) to point out that they’re even there.
I hope this post sheds some light on a complex topic and helps you to untangle some of the limiting beliefs you’ve picked up over the years!
10 Lies You Were Taught (Break Free To Find Your Happy!)
Lie You Were Taught #1:
People Can Hurt Your Feelings
Truth: I allow other people to hurt me
The harsh reality is that no one can hurt your feelings but you! Of course, someone might say something insensitive or do something that you don’t like. But it’s not those things that are hurting you. It’s the story you’re telling yourself that’s causing the pain.
Circumstances outside of us are always neutral. For example, take two students who get a D on an assignment. One might not even blink at this event while the other might go into a deep depression over it. The event was the same for both yet the inner experience is what changes the reaction.
If you’re thinking something like “My career is now over” of course that’s not going to feel very good! So maybe thinking something like “Wow I really need to study more next time” is a better way to manage the situation. Two different stories = two very different feelings in the body! The only difference is in the thoughts; thoughts create stories which then create feelings.
This all happens so fast that most of us don’t even notice it! But if you can slow down for a minute and notice the story you’re telling yourself, you’ll also be able to realize that you have the power to write a new (less hurtful) story!
Lie You Were Taught #2:
Some People Have It Easier Than Me
Truth: No one has it easy
These days it’s easier than ever to imagine that everyone else’s existence is so much easier and happier than your own. But we’re subjected to Instagram-curated perfection not the real world! Everyone has problems, including Beyonce, Kim Kardashian and Meghan Markle. Getting upset because you think someone else has gotten a break won’t help you get ahead! It actually is just wasting your perfectly good time and energy.
If you really want something to happen for yourself, go out there and start making it happen! Take a chance, start a new project, put in your hours. All of that will eventually pay off whereas obsessing about someone else’s perceived success will not.
Remember, you can’t ever see the entire picture! Lots of people faced major adversity on the path to where they are today. Even major success brings around a whole new set of challenges! Don’t assume those challenges are easier to face than your own! We all have our unique hurdles and who’s to say which are better or worse? The best thing to do is to get busy scaling your own mountain and leaving everyone else to do the same!
Lie You Were Taught #3:
Things Can Scare You
Truth: I allow certain things to scare me
It certainly might feel like spiders, snakes or heights are scaring you. But the truth is, it’s just your brain making an excessive amount of noise. It’s fear taking over the reigns! Not everyone is afraid of these things and they don’t (necessarily) pose any real threats to your physical being. That means your reaction is happening only inside of you.
Dive in a little deeper and see the story your brain is creating. Then try to get clarity: are you really going to fall out of this (closed) window? Is that spider really venomous? Our fear mechanisms are so often stronger than the truth of the situation! But if you can slow down for a minute and untangle your thoughts, it will be a lot harder for those thoughts to carry you away with them.
Lie You Were Taught #4:
I Can’t Change The Way I Feel
Truth: I’m in charge of my feelings
Emotions might hit you like a five-ton truck from time to time! But despite what it feels like, that’s not actually what’s happening. You’re still very much in control of those emotions!
Unfortunately subscribing to this line of thinking also means that you’re completely out of control of your own life. It means that if “bad” things happen, you have to feel bad and that you can only feel good if “good” things happen. But none of that is actually true!
Feeling bad is never the fault of the outside world! It’s really the result of your own thinking errors. You feel bad because you’ve made up a story in your own mind that hurts you. However, you can just as easily chose to believe a new story that doesn’t hurt so much.
It’s hard to swallow this at first but once you get it, it’s truly magic! After all, why would you want to put your happiness in anyone’s hands but your own? When you get that you’re truly the only one in charge, you get to start believing in any story you like!
Lie You Were Taught #5:
Someone Can Embarrass You
Truth: I embarrass myself
One of the cool things about being an autonomous adult is having control over yourself. The thing is everyone else is too! That means you can only take responsibility for your own actions. Trying to blame your embarrassment on someone else is futile.
So what’s happening when you claim to be embarrassed by someone? Perhaps someone close to you is doing or saying something you don’t approve of. But the embarrassment you feel is actually yours alone! You’re simply making that person’s actions mean something negative about you when that’s not true in reality.
The truth is that feeling embarrassed about someone else is really just an attempt to control that person. You’re making your feelings and beliefs more important than theirs. It’s so important to understand boundaries in our relationships! That means taking responsibility for ourselves and knowing what isn’t ours to worry about or manage. Truth be told, trying to control those around us is an exhausting affair. It’s so much easier to learn how to just manage our own minds instead!
Lie You Were Taught #6:
It’s Unsafe To Love
Truth: Loving is never dangerous
Love in and of itself is never a bad thing. How can loving someone ever actually be dangerous? Giving away our adoration and energy is a beautiful gift. However, this fear of hurt shows something darker. Most people have their ideas of love wrapped up with control.
Most of us want to love only if the other person loves us back. Sometimes we only want to love if the other person behaves the way we want them to. If they don’t love us or do what we want, then we’re very quick to retract our love!
But that really just means your love was conditional. On some level, your love was meant to control the other person. What’s so loving about that?
Someone not loving you back (or even not liking you back!) is really no reflection of you. Similarly, someone else’s behavior really has nothing to do with your ability to love.
Love is actually an infinite well. If it wasn’t, every marriage would split up upon the birth of a child (or the adoption of a dog!). We also don’t feel less love for our parents when we find a romantic partner. Yet when it comes to our romantic relationships we act as if love is a limited resource. We want to control it and hoard it and if we can’t secure a “guarantee” about it, then we want to walk away.
Please know that loving someone is 100% danger free. However, that doesn’t mean everyone will love you back. That doesn’t mean that people won’t disappoint you or that your boundaries won’t every get crossed. That also doesn’t mean you have to stay in a relationship that’s not working out! You can love someone and want the best for them and still let them go. That love won’t diminish you; it’ll actually make the entire experience easier to navigate. (And in fact, letting go with love and respect is the very best possible way to end a relationship.)
Lie You Were Taught #7:
You Make Money By Working Harder
Truth: Working smarter is what makes money
Here’s another “truth” that’s been ingrained in you since you were little–perhaps even by your parents! If you want more allowance money, then you’d better step up and do more chores! However, in the real world this idea falls flat on its face. Do you really think Jeff Bezos works infinitely more hours than you do? Of course not! Yet this erroneous idea about working harder or longer is one of the biggest barriers to our own success.
It’s so common for us to want more money in our life. Yet money always brings up a world of fears and one of the top ones is that if we become more successful, we’ll have less time to actually enjoy our life. That’s bound to leave us feeling conflicted: we want more money because we want more freedom. Yet if we have to work more we’ll also have less freedom.
It’s no wonder so many of us have difficulty advancing our financial situations with this confusing belief structure playing out behind the scenes! So it’s crucial to understand that making more money is never about working more. It’s about working smarter. It’s about offering more value to the world and value is always rewarded.
Getting clear about your own value is one of the smartest moves you can make to change your money situation. So stop worrying about working “harder” and start thinking about how to increase your value instead!
Lie You Were Taught #8:
Your Partner Should Meet All Your Needs
Truth: I’m the only one in charge of my needs
This one’s for all you ladies raised on Disney fairy tales! (That includes me too so don’t feel bad!) Many of the romantic ideals we’ve picked up over the years have given us wildly unrealistic standards. But one of the most damaging ideas is that we can fulfill all of our needs with just one person.
Yes, your partner should make a wonderful addition to your life! (And if they’re not what are you even doing?) But even our best romantic matches cannot fulfill every need we have. No one human can do that! We aren’t carbon copies of each other and thank goodness for that! Yet how often do we project disappointment on our partner for not being more like us?
Instead of being disappointed in your partner for not being into the same art (or movies or music etc.) as you, why not find some friends who do? Pushing your partner to do something that they’re not into will breed resentment. And putting your interests on a shelf because your partner isn’t into them will diminish an important part of you!
Never forget that your partner fell in love with you for being uniquely you! It’s important to continue expanding your interests, even if they’re not perfectly aligned with your partner! (And it’s up to your partner to do the same.)
Lie You Were Taught #9:
Straight A’s/A College Degree Means You’re Smart
Truth: There are lots of ways to be intelligent
If you’ve fallen for this line of thinking, it’s definitely not your fault! The school system has set many of us up to feel pretty terribly about ourselves. We’re encouraged to study hard and get gold stars (or straight A’s). But what happens if you don’t fit into that process?
In reality, school was originally designed to create factory workers: people who could follow instructions and meet deadlines. It’s definitely not designed to make the most of our innate talents and skills! It’s also not the best measure of intelligence (even though your teachers would haver have told you that!).
There’s no reason to let your less-than-stellar grades or lack of college degree stand make you feel stupid or incapable. Understand that real-life success is about so much more than that! (Besides, I can count the amount of times I’ve actually needed my school transcripts on one hand.)
If you didn’t fit the regular school mold, take heart! You probably have aptitudes in other areas.
Back in 1983, an American developmental psychologist named Howard Gardener described 9 types of intelligence:
- Existential (life)
- Body smart
Chances are one of those resonates with you!
Ultimately, you are in charge of your own success in life despite how “smart” the world told you you are! There are plenty of high school dropouts who have gone on to create successful businesses! Those people didn’t let a “no” hold them back from living their best life and neither should you. At the end of the day, the only opinion that matters is your own.
Lie You Were Taught #10:
You Can Be Happy All The Time
Truth: It’s normal to be dissatisfied
I still get messages all the time from people who seem surprised to feel badly about something in their life! We’ve been conditioned to believe in this lie since we were small: get the degree, the job, the ring and THEN life will be happily-ever-after.
I regret to inform you that that never works! The reason you haven’t found your fairy-tale ending yet is because it simply doesn’t exist! The goal posts keep moving further and further down the field. As soon as we accomplish one thing, something else pops up to replace it. But with the wrong mindset, this process can start to feel like something is amiss.
But it’s actually completely normal and dissatisfaction is actually a beautiful thing! We’re not meant to stay exactly the same forever. Feeling a desire for more is just the nudge to find something new to pursue in life!
So what did you think? Which limiting belief hit home for you? How can you start working through it?
Untangling the erroneous beliefs in our brain is not an overnight process! (Unfortunately!) But that’s okay. The more you keep diving into this work, the easier it will get identify and replace your old beliefs with new ones that are actually supportive.
Good luck with this and please let me know how it goes!