Believe

I have a tattoo of a daisy with the word “Believe” crafted into the stem on my ankle. At the time It was a reminder to believe in myself and grow in confidence. It’s still serves that purpose but the word has come to have different implications for me.

Daisies

The dictionary defines ‘believe’ as “to accept something as true, genuine, or real”. What we forget is that some of our beliefs are conscious but there are a whole lot that linger beneath the surface and have a huge influence on how we go about our daily lives. It is only in the last few months that I have become aware how much these beliefs shape the stories I tell myself and therefore my whole life. I have often told people who lament their lot in their life that they are where they need to be. My understanding being that the Universe has conspired to bring this point now and that there are no accidents. For me it also just meant that everything is ok as it is, Accept…then act.

It was only last weekend when a friend said it to me when I was having a moment that I realised I am where I am because of the choices that I have made in my life. Those choices were driven by conscious and unconscious beliefs I had about myself, my environment and my worth. I needed to accept that so I can start making different choices. So yes, the Universe has conspired to get me to this point but it is in response to the direction that I have given it. That is actually an empowering and liberating thought which has me very excited about what the future holds.

In the book, Conversations with God, we are constantly reminded that we are creators. We are all a part of God and that, like God, we are creators. We are not here to learn how to be but here to create the experiences that we want to have. We are here to live out the grandest vision that we have for ourselves, yet most of us choose to play small because we fear “what other’s may think” or that we might fail or because we don’t believe that we are worthy of that vision. We are. You are. I am. It is our birthright. These are the first unconscious beliefs we have to change.

The next belief that we need to work on is that we live in a scarce Universe. We don’t. We live in an abundant universe. Yes I know sources of fresh water are becoming fewer and the earth is heating up causing the ice to melt, etc, but we just need to change our everyday behaviors to minimize our environmental impact. There is and will always be enough for everyone if we just used what we needed and didn’t waste as much as we do. Abundance doesn’t mean there is enough to use to excess, it means there is enough for everyone to enjoy without wasting. Well that’s my take on it anyway.

In the Mind Power Course that is run by Robin Banks (I highly recommend this course if you are looking to invest in yourself), we are taught that our thoughts are real forces and they really are. We are also taught that we have our own ‘model of reality’ that is determined by our beliefs. In order to change your thoughts, you need to create a new model of reality for yourself. You do that by changing your beliefs. Sounds like mumbo jumbo doesn’t it? Let me ask you this…When was the last time you had to change something in your life? What belief did you have to change to make it happen? What evidence did you provide to yourself that what you initially believed wasn’t true and/or that your new belief was true? As an example, in order to quit smoking I had to change a few core beliefs I had about why i smoked. I believed that I need cigarettes to calm me down when I was stressed. I believed that smoking was a part of who I was and to give it up was being untrue myself. Yes I actually believed that hogwash.😂. I looked for the evidence to support these beliefs. I realised that I had spent the first 18 years of my life without cigarettes and I was just fine. Allen Carr’s book reminded me that cigarettes are merely a vehicle to get nicotine into my system and it was the hit of nicotine that provide the relief from a craving. The craving is what caused me to feel stressed so the cigarettes were the cause of the problem and not the answer to it. Knowing and accepting this, there is no way I can justify going back to smoking. My beliefs about why I need to do it have changed.

So it turns out that our beliefs, both conscious and unconscious, are what drive us to think the thoughts we think and take the actions we take. They determine where we will end up in life. Thoughts are the tools that we use to fuel new beliefs and to create a new reality for ourselves. Know you are worthy of dreams, there is more than enough love, money, joy and prosperity out there for you and that you are the co-creator of your reality. So go out and make it happen😉

As always, stay safe. Wear your mask, keep your distance and keep your hands clean and sanitized when out and about. I would to hear about the tools you used to change your beliefs and the impact it has had in your life.

Bye for now

“What you crave is not the habit itself but the change in state that it delivers”

“What you crave is not the habit itself but the change in state that it delivers”

James Clear (Atomic Habits)

I’ve just started reading the book Atomic Habits by James Clear. I came across this line in chapter 3 and I stopped dead in my tracks. That understanding for me is what enabled me to give up smoking and to begin and sustain an intermittent fasting lifestyle. This week it has been 7 years since I gave up smoking and I have officially lost 5kg’s and dropped a dress size in less than 2 months. Both achievements required a change in mindset in order to effect a change in habits and achieve a desired change in state.

In order to change my mindset, I asked myself: “what did I do before I developed the habit?”. The reality is that I didn’t always smoke and I wasn’t always fat. I realised that I had started smoking for a particular reason but the habit embedded itself for very different reasons. Reasons and beliefs that I created that actually were not true. I just used them to justify my behavior. The same is true for why I have remained fat for the last 6-7 years. The fact of the matter was that I wasn’t always this way and I didn’t have to be this way any more. Once I acknowledged and accepted that, I was well on my way to kicking my bad habits to the curb!

Let me not lie, I still find losing weight harder than giving up smoking. That desire to snack is way harder to kick than the desire to smoke. I thought I loved smoking but my love for smoking was nothing compared to my love for snacking. The truth of the matter is that I was never a snacker when I was thin. I became a snacker because I wanted to emulate the behaviors I read about in magazines. I wanted to be able to say that chocolate and wine was my “fix” in times of stress for example. Reading a book used to be my fix and it worked perfectly for me but noooo, I had to fix what wasn’t broken because I wanted to be someone I wasn’t, and it got me fat and unhealthy.

I am happy to report that I have gone back to reading as my fix. I am in my happy place when I have a book open in front of me. I am in my happy place when I am learning and “exploring” through books. I don’t need anyone in that space and I don’t need snacks or cigarettes there either. I am blissfully me. Now if only I can remember how I used to occupy myself while thinking and working before I developed the habit of snacking. Maybe I just chewed on a pencil 🤷🏽‍♀️. What is that change in state that snacking delivers that I crave? I’m sure I will crack it soon enough. Maybe the rest of the book “Atomic Habits” will help.

At the end of the dusty day, I guess it’s quite clear that I developed bad habits trying to be someone that I am not. Why? It never occurred to me that I was perfect as I was. I didn’t appreciate those moments when I was happy and kept trying to create a cooler version of myself that I thought people would love more. Well that hasn’t worked😜. So I am going back to being me. To doing the things I have always loved and tough noogies for those who think it’s uncool. I love me! In the words of Susan Cain:

“The key to everything: give yourself permission to be who you really are.”

Well there you have it. I started writing about changing habits and ended with a declaration of love for myself. Lol! In all serious though, how many habits have you developed trying to be someone that you are not just because society made you feel like the “original“ you was uncool? Give yourself permission to be who you really are. Who knows, some of those bad habits might just fall away of their own accord. Besides, you are cool as you are.

Let me get back to my book. Thanks for meandering down this lane with me. I hope it helped you unpack some things about yourself and why you do the things you do like it did for me. Stay grounded. TTFN

Quote of the day: Friday

“First you create your habits then your habits create you”

___ Jim Kwik

Blue ladies bicycle resting on bike post in front of a bright yellow wall and large window
Quote by Jim Kwik. Image from Canva. Created by Grounded African

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