We all look at the world differently but it is easy to believe that others see things the same way we do. Two people can have the same experience but come away from that with a very different reaction/thought process. We all interpret the world differently according to our upbringings, genetics and past experiences.
Core beliefs are deeply held beliefs that can be hard to shake. Often, they are dysfunctional and inaccurate. For example – someone who was constantly told as a child that they are worthless will most likely internalise that and make that part of their identity, believing themselves to be worthless. Think of core beliefs like a pair of sunglasses – a kind of filter that we see the world through. We are more atuned to pick up on things around us that confirm our core beliefs and will reject or not notice things that don’t confirm our core beliefs. Events that happen that prove a person isn’t worthless may be dismissed as it doesn’t fit. This is how core beliefs can limit us unnecessarily.
How core beliefs can limit us:
Situation: You meet a new person and think about asking them to go for coffee.
Core belief – I’m not worthy = Consequence: Why would they go out with me? Don’t ask them for coffee
Core belief – I am worthy = Consequence: We might have fun if we go out together. Asks the person to go for coffee.
Many people have negative core beliefs that cause harmful consequences and limit their opportunities. They hold on to self limiting beliefs without realising it.
To begin challenging your core beliefs, you first need to identify what they are. Here are some common examples:
I am unworthy; I am unloveable; I am unworthy; I’m ugly; I’m undeserving; I’m a bad person; I’m stupid…
What is one of your core beliefs? _______________________
List three pieces of evidence contrary to your belief_____________
Beliefs can be changed, that’s the good news. Some beliefs are old, outdated and just not true. Do a stock-take on your core beliefs and make sure you have core beliefs that support and empower you.