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The power of our beliefs

Today I would like to discuss beliefs, and the extent to which they shape us. There is no place here to judge whether a belief is good or bad, or whether one is true in relation to another. Rather, I would like to draw your attention to the impact they can have on us, on our behaviour, and how they support or handicap us.

Religious, societal and family beliefs arise from belonging to a specific group, and these collective beliefs are reflected on a personal level. They have an impact on what we believe and perceive about the world and about ourselves. What do we believe the world wants from us, what is our place?

Our opinions may give rise to a certain confidence or, conversely, mistrust of the outside world and of ourselves. Our values, behaviours and certain fears, such as fear of being judged or watched by others, all stem from our beliefs.

How are these beliefs imprinted on us?

Most of them come from our childhood: from our relationship to our parents, from the social group to which we belong, and from our experiences during that time. An emotional shock or the repetition of a situation is one way of anchoring a belief that eventually feeds on itself; we only perceive what reinforces it.

For example, a child who is told repeatedly that he is nice and good will not have the same perception of himself as one who hears that he is bad, that he will never be successful. Such input may create feelings of calm and well-being in the first child, and of tension and discomfort in the second, which in turn generate positive and negative behaviours respectively. These are chosen unconsciously.

Thus, in the same situation, depending on their beliefs, two people will feel things differently. Words have power and potency like actions, and we don't know how they will be perceived. We are not responsible for that but responsible for the words we use. Taking the example of the two children previously mentioned, if we tell them, "What you did is good but you could have done better", one will hear "What you did is good", and the other "It’s not good enough", according to their respective beliefs.

Our opinions, especially with regard to ourselves, are not set in stone. Questioning a negative belief can enable us to adjust a behavioural pattern that troubles us. To do this, first of all, it is good to isolate a reaction that poses a problem for us. Then to identify the source emotion (frustration, anger, sadness, boredom, fear...), which leads us to recognize the need behind the emotion. And finally to ask the following question: from what belief does our need stem?

Once the belief and the need to be satisfied are identified, we can choose to modify our point of view on a situation and therefore our response to it.

Kinesiology helps us to bring back to consciousness elements of the unconscious, so that we can recognize the beliefs and perceptions that prevent us from moving forward, and thus adapt our perspective of a situation and support a desired change.

*Illustration Clemence Renault,

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