Our brains cannot tell the difference between something real, and something vividly imagined.
We are like sponges, soaking up information from our environment, and then we ask questions to interpreting what it means in our lives. But those interpretations are often inaccurate or incomplete.
In the case of the placebo effect, it’s not the pill that gives us energy or relief, but it’s the belief about that pill, that determines how it will effect you. If you become convinced that the sugar pill will help you focus or ease your pain, your mind will make it real. The same thing occurs when we have strong beliefs about love, work, and money. Holding beliefs causes you to act as if they are true.
Building disempowering beliefs
Let’s say you always get the short end of the stick in breakups. Relationship after relationship, you get your heart trampled on. You can only take so much before it starts to effect how you view those relationships.
You start to ask questions like “why does everyone leave me?” or “why didn’t they love me back?”
Now let’s say that in your crazy little head, you come to the conclusion that the problem was simply that you didn’t spend enough time together.
Maybe if they got more one on one time with you, they would see what they’re missing. You become convinced that if they really got to know you they would want to stay, and all you have to do is keep their focus on you.
That belief will turn you into a crazy stalker.
You’ll dance around for attention, and then cling to them once you get it.
How would a normal person respond to that kind of behavior? They’d probably want to leave as soon as possible.
Only strengthening the belief that they just didn’t spend enough time with you
That example is a little extreme, but It shows how easy it is to get an incomplete picture that supports a dis-empowering belief. On the flip side, it’s not hard to find evidence to support the belief that you are the master of your reality, and that you can and do play an integral hand in all the major events in your life.
All you have to do it ask questions with better answers.
neither answer is really wrong. It’s easy to come to the conclusion that the world is full of back door deals and trickery. Just like it’s easy to draw the conclusion that most people have good intentions. The choice is yours as to which beliefs you feed.
You must choose to consciously filter the world around you, because how you interpret the events in your life, will determine the beliefs you hold about the world around you.
If all you’re getting is evidence that the world is out to get you, or that you need to get one up on everyone else before they get one up on you, you’ll start to believe it.
Those beliefs will cause you to approach every interaction defensively, and with the intention of getting the upper hand. This, in turn, will causes others to become defensive against your aggressiveness, giving you more evidence that people are always trying to attack you.
Your beliefs can lead you down a road of helplessness and alienation, or they can cause you to approach every situation as an opportunity to grow and to help others to do the same. But you have to be conscious of the way you are interpreting the events in your life.
A powerful and simple way to challenge your beliefs is to ask questions that put you in a place where you can act. If you ask questions about your situation that are disempowering, you’re going to get a disempowering answers. As a result, it will lead to poor beliefs and poor results.
Shitty questions, lead to shitty answers
“Why am I so fat?” or “Why is it that I never seam to get noticed at work unless I’m being punished?” will give you answers like “because you lost the genetic lottery” or “because corporate America is a popularity contest, and that to get praise you have to pretend as if you like everyone while blowing kisses to their egos.”
All the answers you get, feed your beliefs and make them stronger. To get better answers, all you need to do is ask questions designed to put you in control. for example “What am I doing that is causing me to gain so much weight?” or “what are thin people doing to support their health, and how can I do the same things?”
Both questions lead to answers that give you the option to take action.
For work you might ask “how can I earn praise?” or “what can I do to stand out in the crowd?”. As you start asking empowering questions, you’ll start seeing more opportunities to take action, and take control of your life.What kind of questions are you asking yourself about things like love, family, health, relationships, or work? And how could they be tuned up to give you better answers?
Learning is just a long cycle of asking and answering questions, and the quality of your questions will determine the quality of your answers.
Every experience we have, and how we interpret those experiences feeds specific beliefs about what those events mean. Those beliefs become convictions about how the world is, and if you let them, they can hold you back from expressing your full potential in all areas of life. So stand guard at the gate of your mind, and be conscious of the filters you use to view the world.
Above all, ask questions that empower you.