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“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” Audrey Hepburn
Our Landscape of Limiting Beliefs
Our experiences and circumstances form the framework of who we have become. These experiences have cultivated the landscape of the life we currently live. Etched in our minds are the views and limiting beliefs we developed because of these experiences. Assumptions we’ve made about ourselves, and our lives are, wrapped up in these beliefs. Based on these assumptions, we have created an understanding of how life is, of how people act, and what we expect from the world.
In some cases, these assumptions and limiting beliefs are generational, passed down in our families. Similarly, as our current experiences have been influenced and distorted by our past experiences. This is not our original programming. Nevertheless, joy and living a satisfying life is our birthright. Our blueprint at birth is designed for love and happiness.
Trapped By Barbed Wire
When we feel trapped by our circumstances and unable to make a move, it can feel like we have barbed wire wrapped around our arms, our legs, and our hearts. We’ve been trapped for so long that we stopped asking ourselves how we got here.
The barbed wire represents the confinement and the power that the limiting beliefs have when we continue to hold onto them. These limiting beliefs show up in how we think about life, in general. We need to explore the remnants of our experiences and ask ourselves, “how are those experiences still showing up in my life today?”
The Conflict Between Truth and Lies
Conflict exists between the limiting beliefs that we hold onto and the true empowering thoughts we have about ourselves. Empowering thoughts may lay dormant, overtaken by our disempowering limiting beliefs. All too often, there are two simultaneous, opposing thoughts in our heads. One tells us we need to try something new and “go for it”. Alternatively, the other one stops us. It tells us that trying to achieve our dreams is not worth the effort. “You won’t be good enough. It will never work”. Only one of those voices is the truth. The other one is telling you lies to keep you safe.
Taught in the metaphysical text, A Course in Miracles, is that there are only two sources of emotion: love and fear. All our wounds, hardships, and experiences that have challenged us in our lives – if it remains with us, it is kept alive by our fear: fear of something happening to us again or fear of something not happening at all.
The Reconciliation of Our Fears
How do we reconcile the fear of our desires not coming true and the fear of the possibility that they may come true? When busting through your limiting beliefs, there is a feeling of vulnerability because the protective layer of self-doubt starts to wear away. It feels as though a strong wind can come along and there is nothing tethering you down. Feelings of being unsafe, ungrounded, and unprotected from the coverage of self-doubt may temporarily be the outcome.
Undoubtedly, your perception of reality has been skewed. There was a perception of safety when barbed wire constrained you. No matter how painful the situation is, there was security in an insecure state because of the familiarity.
Breaking free and making a change will force you to deal with the unknown and face the fear of uncertainty. Self-doubt has been used as a protective shield, shielding you from taking chances and making changes. As a result, a fear of the future (or future-tripping) may emerge where you start to scare yourself out of the reality of what is by creating a nonreality of what hasn’t occurred.
Those who have taken a risk in their life have found that once they acted, the situation wasn’t as scary as their imagination made it out to be. It is so important to understand that the actions you take are not a lifelong sentence. Every decision and every moment are transitional to the next. Permanence does not exist. Change is constant.
The chance that you take and the change you make is only one stop along your journey.
The work is to understand our wounds and then get some distance from them. We need to acknowledge them but also detach from the experiences to release the control these events have over us, now and in the future.
Honor Your Journey
Acknowledge and appreciate the journey and insight you’ve gained along the way. Wounds that go unacknowledged will keep on showing up in our lives in different and more impactful ways. Healing from past wounds takes work however it’s time to recognize that your anger, sadness, resentment, and fear from the past are no longer serving you. Take the time to plant new seeds of new empowering beliefs and begin to rid yourself of the barbed wire holding you back.
For more information on limiting beliefs, check out this Psychology Today article
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