Fact or Fiction
In order to grow and expand as an individual it’s crucial that you learn to recognize whether the beliefs you have about yourself and your life are fact or fiction. Factual beliefs are based on your core values and authentic self. Fictional beliefs are all the rest. – SL Taylor -
Fact or Fiction
It has taken me quite some time to determine whether all the stuff I believed about myself was based on fact or fiction. And what I’ve come to realize is that about 99.9% of it is, drum roll please…enough to make War and Peace seem like a quick and easy read.
I do think that the majority of us fall under this very category. That most of what we believe to be fact about ourselves really is based on fictitious self-limiting beliefs. It starts at a very early age. Even before we can talk we understand some of what we hear. And, what we hear is all about what we can’t do. “No,” is one of the first words most children say because they’ve heard it or some form of the word since birth. Possibly even before.
So, we already feel limited in what we can do before we ever get started. Then as we grow up, we continue to hear more about what we can’t do until we’re convinced that we’re limited in what we can do.
What we hear depends on the kind of environment we grow up in. Not just our actual homes, but from our friends, the media, even our communities and religious institutions. All of it plays a part in how we perceive ourselves and what we believe our potential is.
Most of us tend to carry on the same standard of living we grew up with. It doesn’t matter if we grew up in the worse part of town just scraping by or in the wealthiest part of town with money to spare. Chances are right now you’re living some variation of this lifestyle. It may be a little better or it may be a little worse but things haven’t changed dramatically for most.
That’s because what we’ve been led to believe about what we can accomplish is fiction, pure fiction. The hard fact is that if you choose to you can do anything you want. There are no limits, there are no glass ceilings, there is absolutely nothing whatsoever to hold you back if you so choose.
Just the Facts
Fictitious or self-limiting beliefs affect almost every one of us one way or another. It doesn’t matter whether you’re wealthy, dirt poor or somewhere in the middle. Most of us have been given limits based on what others believe about us.
But what others believe isn’t what’s important. It’s what we believe about ourselves and our abilities that are important. The only way to really know exactly what we believe is to subject every belief we have to the fact or fiction test.
For example, when we have a thought comes along that says I’d like to get my college degree, then the next thought that comes along says but I can’t because of this belief (and you can fill in the blank), then say but is that fact or fiction. Is that belief based on something I have proof is true or something that I’ve always been told is true? If you have irrefutable proof then it’s fact. But if not, then it’s fiction. It’s only a self-limiting belief.
Let’s say for instance you want to get your degree. But, “your belief” is that you don’t have the money to go to school right now. Well, that may actually seem like a fact to you if you don’t have the cash. But that’s still just fiction. Because if it’s something you really desire to do you’ll figure out a way to get the money. Be it loans, grants, working an extra job, or taking just one class at a time, whatever it takes.
I Have a Question
Once you determine whether you think a belief is fact or fiction then you question it. You need to channel your inner three year-old and say, “but why” to every objection you have. “But why can’t I?” “But why do I think that?” “But why can’t I do it anyway?” “But why should I let that stop me?” Every time an objection comes up, “but why” it until you know that whatever decision you’ve made is based on fact not fiction.
Once you’re able to start making your choices based on fact, you’ll see that now you’re beginning to make different choices. These choices should resonate more with your authentic self and your core values they should also feel good.
You shouldn’t feel the need to struggle over every choice. Your choices should begin to come easily and be better than the choices you’ve made in the past. As you begin to make better choices you’ll of course, get better results. And when you start to live your life based solely on fact then you’ll finally see that there are no limits to what you can do.
- More from Shonda -