There is a very interesting source of self-sabotage. The one that is harder to detect. Very often we might think we are committed and consciously we are, but life proves us otherwise. If you feel any push and pull around your goal (even the goal of "creating clarity about the next goal") like part of you wants to figure it out, but there is some inner resistance or flat out no results even if you take a lot of actions. The reason might be conflicting commitments.
Conflicting commitment is when one part of you wants something, but some subconscious part of you doesn't and it sabotages it. Subconscious usually wins, and we don't get our goal whatever that is. But only until it's in subconscious....
Those beliefs don't have to be logical or true, and once you realize what they are you may choose not to believe them any more. But awareness about what they are needs to come first before you can do anything about them.
Example from my life
When after a decade of looking for life purpose and my next fulfilling project/goal and not being able to create that clarity, I challenged my level of commitment and realized I wasn't fully there. I wanted to, very much so, but there were fears and subconscious beliefs that were pulling another direction. After digging deep, I discovered that I had the following beliefs:
- When I figure out what I truly want to do, I will have to give up my freedom lifestyle, and my overall quality of life will get worse.
- Once I discover what it is I am meant to do and put it out in the world, I will get a hostile response from the world and people, judgment, rejection etc..
- I discover what it is that I truly want to do, but won't be able to figure out the HOW to do it well and won't make it happen.
- I will jump for something way bigger than me and I fail.
Once I realized that's what I unconsciously believed would happen if I get clarity, it made total sense why a big part of me didn't want to figure it out!
How to discover conflicting commitments
So if you feel like you want to create clarity about your next goal and direction but nothing is coming, you can dig for fears and unsupportive beliefs.
"Why wouldn't I want to create this clarity?
What am I afraid would happen once I get clear?"
You might need outside help (a trusted friend, a skillful coach or a mentor) to track those down as very often it's hard to see our unconscious limiting beliefs. The are usually wired in a way that we can't see them, our blind spots.
Good news also are: beliefs only have power over us when they are unconscious. They only have a power to sabotage us while we don't know what they are. Once you become aware of what they are, then you have a choice whether or not you want to keep believing them. Very often once you uncover them, you realize they are not true and that's the end of it. Sometimes they still seem logical and have some power even when you become aware of them. So changing them still might require some effort.
How to change a belief
There are many ways in a personal development world on how to rewire beliefs, replace one habitual belief with another more supportive one: Affirmations, NLP, working with coaches, energy healers, etc.
While in my experience I have found a lot of tools that work well for that purpose, my common go-to in most cases is the simple one.
Ask yourself a question: "Are these beliefs effective in creating the outcome/goal that I want"?
If they are, keep them. If they are not, you have a choice to replace them with the ones that will serve you better.
Beliefs are just thoughts that we thought over and over again. Neuron connections in our brain that fire out of habit in reaction to a certain stimulus. It's like a highway we take from home to work every day that we do on autopilot.
None of the beliefs are right or wrong, the more important question is: are they effective? Do they give you the kind of life that you want or not? If effective - keep it, no need to change anything. But if there is something that you believe, do or keep thinking that’s not providing the outcome you want, something needs to change. You gotta try out new thinking, new perspective, new approach. You don't need to change an existing belief, you can just choose a new one you prefer to take on instead.
Did you find that a belief is not effective for where you are going next? You don't need to change it, you can just choose a new one you prefer to take on instead. Find the new belief that will serve you better, and choose to consciously think it anytime you catch yourself in an old pattern. Our neuron connection take some time to rewire, old connections disconnecting while new ones fuse together. Autopilot can still kick in. It's our job to catch ourselves and make a conscious choice about "which route to take each moment". So even though in many cases simply uncovering subconscious beliefs take away most of their power, it still take practice to rewire our brain until new mode of thinking becomes our default.
In my case, to replace my unsupportive list of beliefs above I chose these new beliefs:
- I can express myself to the world and I will get a friendly response
- I can live my purpose and still be free
- I have something of value to share
- My universe is abundant with resources (the right HOW always shows up)
- My desires are divine: if I want it (as it relates to living my purpose fully), I am meant to have it.
They feel way better, and definitely will be more effective for me at this point.
Belief rewire on steroids
Do you feel overwhelmed and paralyzed by too many beliefs and fears and don't know where to start? Or feel like it's a never ending rewiring journey, and more beliefs keep popping up? Sometimes when we have a lots of unsupportive draining fears and beliefs in a cluster, instead of tackling them one by one it's more effective to look for the main limiting belief that's at the core. The one that's the source for all these smaller tentacle-like beliefs. And when you find it, define the opposite belief that is empowering one. That one belief will make lots of those little beliefs obsolete. Superimpose a higher level belief. Uplevel. This method is courtesy of Stephan Stavrakis from PerceptualPositioning.com.
For example for me I had many fears around failing, rejection, different flavors of "not enough", my core fear around my purpose was that I can't have what I truly want. That I won't be able to figure it out. And even if I figure it out, I won't be able to get it, to make it a reality.
New perspective/belief, the last one in the list above neutralized all of them!
My desire is divine. If I truly want something, with all my heart, I am meant to have it.
What is your core belief that is the main sabotager? And how would your life be different if you uncover it and replace it with the opposite empowering belief?