And there are two payoffs: 1) You live safely in your comfort zone. And 2) You get to be right.
Your mind is so powerful that your beliefs usually become self-fulfilling prophecies – your predictions about what will happen in your life. How does that happen?
Your perceptions about people and life and your beliefs about what’s possible for you and what you deserve drive your behavior. Your behavior creates certain outcomes in your life and responses from others. Those outcomes and responses are often exactly what you believed would happen.
It’s really a very simple and straightforward equation:
You believe something → You take action on that belief → Your outcomes are a result of your actions → Your outcomes generally confirm your beliefs.
So you say, “I knew that would happen”. That’s your self-fulfilling prophecy. And when it happens again and again – that’s your life.
Here’s an example: I have two clients, Ellen and Lorraine (not their real names). Both of them are engineers and were recently let go when their companies downsized.
Ellen believes that it will be extremely difficult – if not impossible – to get a good job as an engineer because the economy is bad and people are struggling to find good jobs. (This is her prophecy.) So what does she do? Ellen’s belief directly affects her behavior so she puts out little effort, isn’t persistent and doesn’t follow-up which leads to no job. Her belief (that she won’t find a job) becomes a prophecy which she fulfills by her behavior (little effort, no follow-up or persistence).
Lorraine, on the other hand, looks around and sees that there are lots of people who are finding jobs, making money and enjoying their lives. She believes that she will find a great job as an engineer doing the kind of work she loves. Because of her belief that she will find a job (her prophecy), Lorraine is persistent and works really hard to find work as an engineer (her behavior). And of course she is successful and finds a great job (her self-fulfilling prophecy).
I am not suggesting that we create everything in our lives by our beliefs. That is up to you to decide. I know that our subconscious is immensely powerful and that our beliefs (our prophecies) about how things will turn out are often correct. But it’s not magic. It’s how our beliefs and perceptions affect what we do in our lives and our relationships and the outcomes we get as a result.
What would you do differently if you believed differently and how might that change your results and your life?
Are you willing to try something? Pick a situation in which you’re not happy with the results you have been getting. What are your beliefs about that situation? What action do you usually take? What is the typical outcome? Then ask yourself what would happen to your results if you changed your beliefs and then did something different? Or, if you’re really brave, just do something different in spite of your beliefs.
Step outside of your comfort zone. Change your belief (your prophecy). Change your behavior. See what happens. Different beliefs→ different behavior→ different results???
Let me know……
Something new: I love speaking with people who have great ideas about how to live an extraordinary life so I will be starting an ongoing interview series. Twice a month I will interview interesting and inspiring people who are challenging us to live boldly and courageously. Most of the interviews will be only 30 to 40 minutes so you can find time to listen in your busy life.
Our first interview, on Valentine’s Day, is with a Los Angeles Matchmaker who will talk about how to have more love in your life. I’ll send you all the details next weekend about the live interview and the replay.
Talk to you next weekend. I hope you’ll join me on this next leg of our journey together.