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What do you believe?

Imagine you are having a challenging day at work… or your partner just does not understand what you are trying to communicate … or when you have that bill you don’t have the money to pay… Or when you have decided to quit sugar and pass a Patisserie.

Do you believe life is hard?

If I had luck on my side I would be successful ...

I have done everything I could possibly do in this situation...

I cannot lose weight because of my genes (that used to be my belief)...

What if I told you that what you believe would in all probability be your reality?

I had a client that believed money was the root of all evils. He was a talented professional with his own business and even though he had raving fans he never made a lot of money and believed life was hard. And there was this other lady who believed that she would never find things that she lost and she had just lost her driving license and was feeling miserable. I told her this story that changed her belief.

I had watched a video on YouTube of the English Mentalist Derren Brown. It was an experiment he did for a TV series about the secret of luck. His target for the experiment was an entire town. He starts the ball rolling by sending a documentary crew to the town to interview people about their local lucky dog statue. This is a set up. Derren has placed the lucky dog in the park and used the documentary as a ploy to plant the idea that if you pat the head of the dog it brings you good luck. This being a community where everyone knows everybody the idea quickly takes root and the belief in the lucky dog escalates. A number of people start reporting how their luck changed by patting the dog.

One specific individual however is convinced that he has no luck. So Derren sets up a number of ways where he could find things to make him feel lucky. He even goes as far as dropping money on his route to work, which the man does not see. They send him fake scratch cards in the post that would help him win a TV but he just tosses them in the bin. Finally they get a van with the unlucky man’s name asking him to call and they drive it past his place of work a number of times and he still does not see it.

So what one can hypothesize from this is that the people who believed their luck would change were people who saw an opportunity and grasped it and those who believed they were unlucky did not see the opportunities and let them go by. According to Robert Dilts, author of the book Beliefs, “Beliefs are not necessarily based upon a logical framework of ideas. They are, instead, notoriously unresponsive to logic. They are not intended to coincide with reality. Since you don’t really know what is real, you have to form a belief – a matter of faith”.

I used to believe that I could never lose the weight I had put on after having my children. I had fat genes; I had put on 33kilos with my second child, and I lost only 8kilos at delivery and had 25more to go. All the women in my family were not successful with losing the weight and even if they lost some, they put it back on. We often said to each other that we just had fat genes. Then one day I decided to change the way I was thinking. I decided that I was going to get my pre-pregnancy body back before I was 40. I told myself everyday that others had done it and if it was possible for someone else, then it was possible for me. That became my new belief and mantra. Then “coincidentally” I met a personal trainer in my own condominium gym that specialized in weight loss and body sculpting. I seized the opportunity and hired her. A year later I had lost 28 kilos and was in the best shape of my life, just in time for my 40th and have managed to keep the weight off.

And coming back to the lady who believed she never found anything once she lost it, after she heard the Derren Brown story, decided to retrace her steps from the day before and found her driving license outside a yoga class she had attended. Something she would not have done while she still believed she was unlucky with finding things. And the client who believed money is the root of all evil and life was hard, refused to let go of those beliefs and is pretty much in the same situation.

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