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3 Step Process to Uncovering and Deconstructing Limiting Beliefs to Unlock Your True Potential

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limiting beliefs

On a recent episode of The Science of Success Podcast with Matt Bodnar, Matt discusses something we have all dealt with at one time or another, limiting beliefs. Limiting beliefs are those tiny thoughts we experience every single day that run through our heads and hold us back. “Limiting Beliefs are stories you tell yourself that cause you to self-sabotage.” Explains Matt.

Your brain is hardwired for survival, “Your subconscious doesn’t care about you being happy. The only thing your subconscious cares about is keeping you alive.”

With your subconscious working against you it’s hard at times to be able to identify these limiting beliefs. So what can we do to eliminate these thoughts that climb into our head and hold us back?

Here is Matt’s three-step process to overcoming these thoughts from our subconscious:

Step 1: Become aware of the limiting beliefs

Matt begins, “There’s a couple different ways to cultivate the ability to be aware of your beliefs… one of the most powerful, is meditation. Meditation is an incredible tool for really becoming aware of your thoughts.” Simply identifying that these beliefs exist will pull them from your subconscious and into your mind. “You can then peg these thoughts and say, Hey, wait a second. That was a limiting belief.”

“Half an hour’s meditation each day is essential, except when you are busy. Then a full hour is needed.” – Saint Francis de Sales

Step 2: Write down your limiting beliefs

I love to use something like Evernote and just keep a running list of limiting beliefs as they come up.” Says Matt. Writing down these beliefs enables us to become more aware these beliefs exist and that grows our ability to see them for what they are. “It requires a brutal self-honesty and cultivated reflection…you have to accept reality as it is… These thoughts are there and ignoring them is only going to cause self sabotage.”

 

Step 3: Challenge the truth behind this belief

We do this by putting these beliefs through a four-question framework. The first of these questions, Is This Belief True? There’s really no right or wrong answer, “Many times you’ll say yes, I think this is true. I don’t want to come off sales-y, I don’t think I have what it takes to execute this project. Or sometimes even at a surface level, the belief is just not true.” The first question is simply, is it true?

Next we ask, can we absolutely know that it’s true? “This is a more metaphysical question about what the nature of this truth is. Is it really true?” Matt recommends looking to others, “Has anybody in history ever proven this wrong? Done something different?” We then ask how do you feel? How does this belief make you feel about yourself? “How do you react when you think you can’t be successful?” write it all down. “Feel the anger, frustration, whatever it might be.”

Lastly, ask yourself who would I be without that thought?. Think about how different your life might be if you weren’t holding on to this limiting belief. “You’d be achieving everything you want, you’d be Elon Musk!… as soon as that belief is gone, you can be that person… this question enables you to visualize a reality where that belief is no longer true.”

“Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.”- William James

To really ingrain these new frameworks in your head Matt recommends writing down the whole process. These beliefs might seem impossible to overcome at first, but the closer you get and the more in touch with these beliefs you become the easier they are to eliminate. Using these steps you can find yourself controlling your beliefs and ultimately your actions in a way you never thought possible.

You can listen to the full hour long episode with Matt on Limiting Beliefs and how to overcome them for positive change on Matt’s website.

How do you deconstruct your limiting beliefs? Please leave your thoughts below!

Matt Bodnar, named a “Rising Restaurateur Star” by the National Restaurant Association and a “Strategy Pro” by Restaurant Hospitality Magazine, is a partner at an early stage investment firm Fresh Hospitality where he focuses on deal making and strategy. Bodnar is also the creator and host of "The Science of Success" a #1 New & Noteworthy podcast, with more than 1 Million+ downloads, focused on improving decision-making, understanding psychology, and sharing insights from experts. Bodnar previously worked as an import/export consultant in Nanjing, China and spent several years at Goldman Sachs before returning to his family roots in the hospitality space.

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5 Indicators of Unresolved Attachment Trauma

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Emotional Attachment Trauma

Trauma caused during specific stages of a child’s development, known as attachment trauma, can have lasting effects on a person’s sense of safety, security, predictability, and trust. This type of trauma is often the result of abuse, neglect, or inconsistent care from a primary caregiver.

Individuals who have not fully processed attachment trauma may display similar patterns of behavior and physical or psychological symptoms that negatively impact their adult lives, including the choices they make in relationships and business.

Unfortunately, many people may not even be aware that they are struggling with trauma. Research estimates that 6% of the population will experience PTSD in their lifetime, with a majority of males and females having experienced significant trauma.

Unresolved attachment trauma can significantly impair the overall quality of a person’s life, including their ability to form healthy relationships and make positive choices for themselves. One well-known effect of unhealed attachment trauma is the compulsion to repeat past wounds by unconsciously selecting romantic partners who trigger their developmental trauma.

However, there are other less recognized but equally detrimental signs of unprocessed developmental trauma.

 

Five possible indications of unresolved attachment trauma are:

 

1.  Unconscious Sabotage

Self-sabotage is a common pattern among individuals with unprocessed attachment trauma. This cycle often begins with hurting others, which is then followed by hurting oneself. It is also common for those with attachment trauma to have heightened emotional sensitivity, which can trigger this cycle.

This pattern can manifest in lashing out, shutting down, or impulsive behavior that leads to feelings of guilt, shame, and self-loathing.

Many people with attachment trauma are not aware of their wounds and operate on survival mode, unconsciously testing or challenging the emotional investment of those around them, and pushing them away out of self-preservation and fear of abandonment.

This can lead to a pattern of making poor choices for themselves based on impulsivity.

 

2. Persistent Pain

 
Chronic pain is a common symptom that can stem from early trauma. Studies have shown a connection between physical conditions such as fibromyalgia, headaches, gastrointestinal issues, insomnia, muscle aches, back pain, chest pain, and chronic fatigue with the aftermath of chronic developmental trauma, particularly physical abuse.
 
Research has found that individuals with insecure attachment styles, such as anxious, avoidant, or disorganized, have a higher incidence of somatic symptoms and a history of physical and emotional abuse in childhood compared to those with a secure attachment style.
 
 

3. Behaviors That Block Out Trauma

 
Trauma blocking practises are used to avoid the pain and memories connected with traumatic events.
 
Emotional numbing, avoidance, and escape via briefly pleasurable activities that distract from terrible memories or suffering are common examples. Unfortunately, this escape habit stops people from successfully processing and recovering from their trauma.
 
Furthermore, when the pain resurfaces, more and more diversions are necessary to continue ignoring it. This can be seen in compulsive behaviours such as drug or alcohol addiction, emotional eating, numbing oneself through relationships, workaholism, excessive or dangerous exercise routines, compulsive internet or technology use, or any other compulsive behaviour used to distract yoursef from intrusive thoughts and emotions.
 
These actions have the potential to prolong a cycle of avoidance and repression, preventing persons from healing and progressing.
 

4. A strong need for control

 
It’s understandable that some people may struggle with control issues in their adult lives, especially if they felt helpless or vulnerable during their childhood.
 
This can happen if someone had an overbearing caregiver who didn’t let them make their own choices, expected too much from them, or didn’t take care of them properly. As adults, they might try to control everything in their life to feel more in control and less anxious or scared. This might be because they didn’t feel like they had control over their life when they were a child.
 
It’s important to remember that everyone’s experiences are different and it’s okay to seek help if you’re struggling with control issues.
 
 

5. Psychological Symptoms That Are Not Explained

 
Individuals with a history of developmental trauma may experience a range of psychological symptoms, including obsessive-compulsive behavior, intense mood swings, irritability, anger, depression, emotional numbing, or severe anxiety.
 
These symptoms can vary in intensity and may occur intermittently throughout the day. People with this type of trauma may attempt to “distract” themselves from these symptoms by denying or rationalizing them, or may resort to substance abuse or behavioral addictions as coping mechanisms. This can be a maladaptive way of trying to numb their symptoms.
 
 

What to do next if you’re suffering from emotional attachment trauma?

 
Everyone’s experience of healing from trauma is unique. It’s important to be aware of whether you have experienced childhood developmental trauma and how it may be affecting your relationships as an adult. Sometimes, the effects of trauma can be overwhelming and we may try to push them away or avoid them.
 
If you notice that you’re engaging in these behaviors, it’s important to seek help from a trauma therapist who can support you on your healing journey. Remember, you’re not alone and it’s never too late to start healing.
 

There are several ways that people can work to overcome emotional attachment trauma:

  1. Therapy: One of the most effective ways to overcome emotional attachment trauma is through therapy. A therapist can help you process your experiences, understand the impact of your trauma on your life, and develop coping strategies to manage symptoms.
  2. Support groups: Joining a support group of people who have had similar experiences can be a great way to find validation, empathy, and a sense of community.
  3. Mindfulness practices: Mindfulness practices such as meditation, pilates, prayer time with God or journaling can help you become more aware of your thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations, and develop a sense of spiritual connection and self-regulation.
  4. Trauma-focused cognitive-behavioral therapy (TF-CBT): This is a type of therapy that is specifically designed to help individuals process and recover from traumatic events.
  5. Building a safety net: Building a support system of people you trust, who are there for you when you need them, can help you feel more secure and safe in your life.

It’s important to remember that healing from emotional attachment trauma is a process and it may take time. It’s also important to find a therapist who is experienced in treating trauma, who you feel comfortable talking with, and who can help you develop a personalized treatment plan.

 
 
If you desire to work with me on healing your wounds and unlocking the aspects of you that were never realized so you can achieve more success in your life then head over to awebliss.com and join my weekly LIVE online mentorship calls.
 
 
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