Limiting Beliefs

“Divorce is not an Option”

“Help those less fortunate, but don’t mingle with them”

“Money will solve all your problems”

Growing up in the 1960’s and ‘70’s, I watched my father live by and act on these statements. They were reinforced at the nightly dinner table, as we talked about our day and discussed the local neighborhood gossip.  “The Smith’s are getting a divorce!  Oh, how terrible!  There is nothing that can’t be worked out in a marriage; what about their poor children?” 

My father did volunteer work and was very generous to people who needed a hand up, such as those in the “lower classes.”  However, at our annual village summer party, when the community public works employee (garbage collector) asked my mother to dance, my father was furious and quickly cut in, saying something like, “Who do you think you are, dancing with my wife?” 

Dad was obsessed with money and although we often had more than enough and lived in a large, wonderful lakefront home, he was never satisfied.  He constantly worried about not having enough money. 

He had a PhD in Psychology, which you would think would have made him more compassionate toward other people and their situations.  And the money issue?  Why couldn’t he be happy with what we had?  

My dad was a classic example of “conditioning.”  As soon as we are born, we are conditioned by our parents and grandparents, siblings, peers, schools and churches to act or even think a certain way.  We are taught through this coaching and our experiences to behave in a way that keeps us safe and accepted by society.  In reality, what happens is we create a “false self” or “conditioned self” that we cultivate over our lifetime.  Our false self can keep our true self hidden in the background because we were shamed once when we spoke our opinion.  It can keep our emotions hidden because we were ridiculed for crying.  It can make us always yearn for more money, even when we have plenty!

The false self is a protective mechanism that we all have, for who wants to be shamed or ridiculed?  When that happens to us, we decide to alter our behavior to avoid feeling that pain in the future.  This altered behavior becomes stronger the more we perpetuate it, and it becomes our first nature to do it in similar situations.  It becomes a habit.

For my Dad, certain aspects of his childhood contributed to his conditioning.  He was born into a very poor family and was given up for adoption because his widowed mother couldn’t afford to care for him.  He was conditioned by his birth mother to have a sense of “lack;” that there would never be enough food or money for him and his family. 

So, he created a well-educated, financially successful persona. He had a circle of prosperous friends who reflected the status he sought for himself. He was above interacting with people who he perceived as having less status than he because they reminded him of his early life, of which he was ashamed.

So, you may say, what’s wrong with bettering yourself, of getting a good education, working hard and creating a prosperous life?  Nothing is wrong with that, however, in my Dad’s case, he continued to hold on to these “limiting beliefs” that were formed early in his life.  We call them limiting because they were originally created from a place of fear, shame or pain and they won’t allow you to grow while acting on them.  Compare instead with an expansive belief, such as, “Unconditional love is everyone’s right.” 

The most important way that conditioning affects us, is that it hides our true, or authentic self.  This is who we were when our soul decided to be incarnated into this current human life. Our true self has goals for each lifetime and connects to the Divine to achieve those goals.  When we start creating limiting beliefs, we move away from the Divine and our goals.  We may lose our connection completely, depending on how strong these limiting beliefs are and how much we act on them.

By starting to recognize our own limiting beliefs, we can begin to spend more time as our true selves.  When we are acting from a place of Divine connection, we can remember, and have the power and support, to achieve our original goals.

Our lives are much more joyful, peaceful and free from fear, shame and pain when we are connected to the Divine. 

Wouldn’t you like to start dismantling your own limiting beliefs?  Working with me over time, through Shamanic healing, we will work to identify and release limiting beliefs that are holding you back.  You will strengthen your connection to the Divine and be able to recognize when you are in your false self vs. your true self.   

Don’t let the old pain, fear and shame stories dictate how you go through life.  Take control of your life!  A free 20- minute breakthrough session is the first step to shift those limiting beliefs into powerful, expansive and supporting ones.  Let’s journey together! 

Tracy Thaden