You may or may not know that working with beliefs is one of my favourite subjects. One of my books called – The Successful Mind – is all about our beliefs, our thinking, our ‘thoughting’ and how they influence not only our emotional state, but what results we ultimately get in life.
(If you want to listen to a free version of that audiobook, check out the Life Masterclass Podcast channel)
The hypothesis I want to put forward today is that your flexibility when it comes to your beliefs, has a significant impact on how gracefully and easefully you navigate your way through life.
Hands up if – as a small person – you believed in Santa Clause?
Do you still believe in Santa Clause?
I am guess that if you did and you are over the age of 20 (and not living with mum and dad) you might be pretty disappointed when you Xmas tree is still bereft of presents on the 26th of December.
So…you changed that belief, because maintaining that belief, after you garnered new information (i.e. mum and dad buy my presents from a store), would have been a little bit out of touch with reality.
But here is the thing.
Over the years I see numerous times where clients (and people in general) stick to their OLD beliefs, even when new information is presented to them. There can be many reasons for that, but we will save that for another conversation.
If your beliefs do not match your reality, it might be easier to change your beliefs (in most cases) then changing your external world.
Footnote: The subject of ‘reality’ is a WHOLE new conversation that I won’t be diving into for now (lucky you).
Let’s talk Science for a Bit
Over the last couple of years science has taken a bit of a hiding, and has lost a lot of credibility, and there is a pretty good reason for that.
Science is not practicing the scientific method if it cannot be challenged. The whole basis of science is to present a hypothesis and then poke holes in it to see if it stands up to scrutiny in all situations.
If an opposing point-of-view is not allowed to be considered or suggested, we are moving away from the practice of science and getting into that grey area of politicking, power grabbing and scientism (fixed narratives).
Now let me bring it back to the relevance for you.
If you discover new information in your own life, that challenges an existing held belief, and you don’t have the FLEXIBILITY to change your beliefs, you are then going toe-to-toe with reality, and like Byron Katie says (author of Loving What Is),
“When I argue with reality, I lose. But only 100% of the time.”
Here’s the Dealio
The most happy, ease-full and peaceful people I have worked with over the years are people who are willing to change their point of view and entire belief blueprint if they discover new information, which makes a former belief redundant, obsolete or no longer true.
In fact, in my work, about 88.67% of the time I spend with my clients, is challenging most of their beliefs.
If “we only know what we know, and don’t know what we don’t know” then having a significant amount of FLEXIBILITY when it comes to our beliefs, is going to serve us well.
I even suggest that flexibility in our thinking, thoughting and believing, is ESSENTIAL if we want to evolve.
Evolution requires trimming away the stuff that is no longer useful in this present experience or reality.
And given that us humans are created pretty awesomely in body, mind and spirit; I think one of the main pruning activities required on our evolutionary journey is the pruning of beliefs that no longer serve us, and the establishment (and integration) of beliefs that empower us.
Don’t hold onto beliefs that no longer serve you.
Be OPEN to the consideration and discernment of new ideas, insights, and perspectives.
For a Gold Star, see if you have the mental capacity to hold paradoxical thoughts in your mind without losing your marbles.
To help with this, choose statements like: “It is POSSIBLE that there is some element of truth in both points of view.”
(And acknowledge we don’t know everything there is to know in this universe; or the other multi-dimensional universes that also might exist.)
My final thoughts
INFLEXIBILITY when it comes to challenging or contemplating or getting curious about your existing beliefs, is not the pathway to happiness.
Be flexible when it comes to letting go of old ideas and beliefs.
Be flexible about your beliefs of the world and how it works (or doesn’t) and open to the possibility that they are incorrect, or not the full story.
I am also very flexible when it comes to letting go of beliefs that make me feel disempowered and choosing beliefs that make me feel empowered.
Don’t chisel your beliefs in a stone tablet, as stone tablets are not very flexible.
And finally, change is actually the essence of life.
So be open to change, and have a joy filled day.
PS: For a deeper conversations, check out my weekly Podcasts here.