THE BLOG
01/14/2015 02:03 pm ET Updated Mar 15, 2015

Are Your Beliefs Holding You Back?

Since it's the middle of January I've still got resolutions on my mind. Last week I wrote about turning those resolutions into goals and then taking action by identifying the: what, why, how and when. If you need help with that, download my free Goals and Action Step worksheets HERE

But if you've already done that and are still struggling to get going, it may be time to dig a little deeper and uncover any negative beliefs that might be getting in your way.

What is a belief?

Stated simply, a belief is an idea or concept that we believe is true about ourselves, others or the world at large.

The first time I heard that definition, I was at a weekend workshop about money and wealth lead by Harv Eker and a light bulb went on. I suddenly realized my beliefs weren't set in stone. They were just ideas I had decided were true for me. Instantly I got that I was in control and could change them! It was exciting, thrilling and aweing.

If you're like I was before I attended that workshop, you probably haven't spent a lot of time thinking about your beliefs. But here's the thing, what we believe is dictating how we feel, what we think and how we show up in our lives.

So it's time to dig in and figure yours out.

How are your beliefs hindering you?

Is the Universe benevolent or dangerous?
Do you deserve success?
Are you loveable?

Your answers to these three basic questions can help you identify some core beliefs that may be keeping you stuck.

For example, I used to think that the world was an unsafe place. This belief was developed over years, starting from when I was a young girl. My sister and I went to boarding school the year I turned 8 (and she 7). I had to take care of her. I was scared all the time. Every weekend we traveled from a small town in Connecticut to Manhattan. I constantly felt afraid and alone.

My belief that the world is unsafe arose as a response to what I was experiencing. I decided that I had to be vigilant because no one would be there for me, that there was danger everywhere. These beliefs got solidified over the years every time I was unsupported or rejected.

Since I took that money workshop, I've come to see how this basic core belief has severely hindered my ability to trust, take risks, make deep connections, and instead propelled me to hide or check out using food, drugs or alcohol.

Changing Your Beliefs

I decided to shift my belief. I wanted to have hope and not fear, feel supported not threatened, be accepted not rejected.

I worked on this through self-reflection and awareness. When I noticed that my body felt anxious or my mind was tense or nervous, I calmed myself with breathing, meditation and positive self talk using affirmations such as: "I am safe in the Universe and all life loves and supports me."

I also talked about what I was experiencing and feeling with a life coach. I wanted to understand where this belief came from and actively pull it out by its emotional roots. When that process was completed, I had to replace it with a new belief.

So if you're ready to dig in, start by answering those three Core Questions from above:

Is the Universe benevolent or dangerous?
Do you deserve success?
Are you loveable?

If you answered any of these in the negative, take a closer look.
Why is it that way?
What happened in your past that lead to this belief?
Are you ready to let those old stories about who you were go?
What can you tell yourself instead?

The process of delving into this might seem scary but it will change your life. The only thing limiting you is you and that starts with your beliefs. So jump in, have fun and reach out if you need any help!

Shakti Sutriasa is the Founder of DecideDifferently.com, a personal development company committed to empowering people to live more connected and fulfilled lives through coaching, counseling and workshops. Her unique approach combines modern psychology and spirituality to support people seeking positive change and self-transformation. Shakti is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, and has an MA in Education. Learn more at DecideDifferently.com