The Importance of Updating Your Beliefs
This is me in grandma’s front yard, I think I was 2 or 3 years old. These days, while I was going through some painful dynamic with a friend that I deeply care about, I found myself revisiting my beliefs and behaviors and thinking a lot about their origins and the sabotaging paradigms that I developed as a child.
I consider myself to be smart, aware and mature, especially compared to how I was 10 years ago. But when I get REALLY triggered and feel like I need to protect myself, I can still go right back into my sabotaging behaviors and act out the same drama that I repeated many times before, as if I didn’t know better.
Our beliefs run our lives. But a lot of beliefs are learned in our childhood, in a moment of crisis. We are SO YOUNG when we start believing that the world around us works in a certain way. And then we adapt ourselves to that version of the world and we develop behaviors to fit in, to help us survive.
At the time, these behaviors serve the purpose of protecting us, but then we start bringing them into our grown up lives and into situations where they have no business being. For example, developing skills to be self-sufficient when you’re a child is necessary if your caregiver neglects or abandons you. But here’s the problem: you may simultaneously also develop the belief that nobody will ever be there for you. And if you carry this belief into your relationships as a grown up, you will sabotage every meaningful connection in your life.
And as long as you’re unaware of the dynamic behind this, you will think that people keep disappointing you. But in reality, you’re the one carrying the belief like a code of honor. And you’re loyal to this belief to such an extent that acting differently would feel like a betrayal of your own values.
Revisit and assess your beliefs often. When something happens, ask yourself, what do I believe about this situation? What does it remind me of? Did I bring something into this dynamic? What belief does it remind me of? Does it serve me to perpetuate this belief or can I upgrade it to something that’s equally true but far more useful?
Update the beliefs that you created when you were 7 years old, or they will run your life with devastating consequences.