The depth of your relationship with yourself is oh so important. Negative core beliefs may lower your self-confidence and keep you stuck. Beliefs are just beliefs; they aren’t facts. Most often, they’re untrue and it’s possible to change them.

After re-reading Shakti Gawain’s book Creative Visualization: Use the Power of Your Imagination to Create What You Want in Your Life, I was inspired to adapt her strategy for myself, and I challenge you, dear reader, to dive into your negative core beliefs. Believe me, the effort is well worth your time and energy.

An eye thoughtful When we try to manage the thousands of negative thoughts that bubble up in our minds daily, overwhelm usually comes to visit. That feeling of overwhelm can slow our productivity and we often come up with a bunch of reasons why we should just stop before finishing an important task. Overwhelm can stop us from starting and finishing projects. The secret to avoiding overwhelm is to manage negative thoughts by becoming consciously aware of them. Once we shed light on the dark, the undesirable thoughts will soften and eventually dissolve. I speak from decades of personal experience.

Self-confidence is a result of how we’ve been brought up and the beliefs we absorbed at an early age. We learn from others how to behave and what to think about ourselves and others. Many of these early lessons affect what we deeply believe about ourselves, other people, and the world around us.

Six Common Negative Core Beliefs

  1. Outside circumstances define me. Essentially, your inner world defines you. What’s going on inside ourselves is the foundation of how we feel and think.
  2. There’s not enough for all of us. Scarcity beliefs are the default setting for a lot of us. Whether it’s money, time, love, or companionship. Well, the truth is, there truly is plenty for all of us.
  3. Life’s too difficult. If everything’s going well, our minds tend towards believing that something bad will soon happen. Life doesn’t have to be a daily struggle.
  4. Something’s wrong with me, other people, my world, the universe. There’s nothing wrong with you; you’re smart, talented, and lovable. If you find yourself rejecting what’s happening in the present moment, try this phrase, “I accept this moment, (or this project, this conversation, this meeting, etc.).
  5. Taking chances is a huge risk. We’ve all had those dark thoughts of failure. If you never take a risk, you may miss your chance at a massively successful life. Your success is how YOU define it.
  6. Trusting my intuition is hard. Having the confidence to tap into your feelings takes practice. Try saying this out loud right now, “I trust myself. I trust my own inner power.”

Bird sitting silentlyIdentify Negative Core Beliefs

Sit in silence for a few minutes with your eyes closed. This will get you tapped into your intuition, your powerful self. Using the process below, consider a particular problem or situation when negativity overwhelmed you.

Write the situation down on paper, type it out, record it on your phone, or tell a friend.

  1. Describe the problem or situation.
  2. What emotions pop up? What are you feeling? (Stay with the feeling, don’t describe the thoughts.)
  3. Where do you feel the feeling in your body?
  4. Now describe the thoughts.
  5. With the worst-case scenario in mind, suppose that happened. What is your greatest fear?
  6. Now flip it. What’s the best-case scenario? Suppose that happened instead of the worst-case scenario. Envision the way you’d like it to be. Close your eyes and stay with that feeling. Breathe into it.
  7. Open your eyes and ask yourself one essential question, What negative belief or fear is keeping me from creating the best-case scenario? Write that down.

Create Affirmations to Flip the Belief

If you don’t like the word “affirmation”, use another word: phrase, saying, statement, or promise-to-self. Think of it as a gift-to-self. Words carry a lot of weight; feel free to choose the ones that are near and dear to your heart.

Here’s how to create your own personal affirmation.

  1. Make your affirmation short, simple, and meaningful to you.
  2. Use the present tense, as if it’s happening now.
  3. Use your name.
  4. Directly relate it to your core negative belief but flip it into a positive, friendly belief.
  5. Shower yourself with kindness.

Man greeting the sunrise of a new dayHere’s an example of one of my many affirmations: “I, Deb, live in a safe, helpful, kind universe. The more I relax and accept the present as it is, the safer I am.” Again, that’s my own personal practice of flipping undesirable thoughts. It makes me smile on the inside.

Moral of the story – stop being mean to yourself. By working to flip your core beliefs, you can learn to love yourself. Yes, you can!