Restructuring negative core beliefs in pursuit of my bliss (from “Shadows Before Dawn: Finding The Light of Self-Love Through Your Darkest Times” “Tool #6 Jail Bars of Belief” pages 117-128)
One of my negative core beliefs is: “I will never have close friends with whom I can be completely myself.”
The emotional payoff for this belief is that I won’t be disappointed when friendships end because I will have had no expectations of my friendships succeeding. It also keeps me from opening up to others and getting hurt.
The rationale behind this belief:
- I’m not good at keeping in touch.
- I eventually say or do something to upset or scare off the other person.
- I have a lot of failed friendships in my past
Looking deeper at 1: Although I don’t keep in touch on a regular basis, it takes two to keep in touch. When my friends go weeks or months without getting in touch with me, I don’t feel any less close to them or bitter about them not keeping in touch on a daily or weekly basis. Checking in every once in a while is good enough to maintain a friendship, and besides being in touch on a daily basis might get a little old leaving very little to share. Besides keeping in touch is a great way to maintain ties but it is not necessary to do so on a regular basis to maintain a friendship. True friendships stand the test of time and distance.
Looking deeper at 2: Just because my friendships end after a major falling out, or shortly after saying or doing something I might have regretted, unless he or she told me that that was the reason we stopped being friends, there is no indication that something I did ended the friendship. There are lots of reasons that friendships end. In my case, distance has a lot to do with it. Losing touch, as I addressed before, does not necessarily mean the friendship is over. A friendship could lie dormant for years, and then be quickly rekindled when the two reunite. Friendships also have life spans. Some last a lifetime, while others last for a few years, months, or even a week, or a holiday. The important thing is not to focus on the end of the friendship, but rather the friendship itself, the lessons I’ve learned, and the love and appreciation I felt while I was in that person’s presence.
Looking deeper at 3: Just because a lot of my friendships have ended does not mean they failed. As I mentioned in 2, there are lots of reasons that friendships end. Furthermore, just because my friendships in the past have ended does not mean that the same will be true of my present friendships. I have the power to change the outcome of my present relationships. I am not the same person I was yesterday, a week ago, a month ago, or last year. I am raising my frequency in such a way that I will attract people with whom I can co-create lasting and fulfilling friendships. I have successful friendships now. Some are decades long while others have just begun, so it is not exactly true that I have a lot of failed friendships. I have had friends who are not present in my life now, but it does not necessarily mean that those friendships had failed or that the people with whom I was friends are no longer friends. I have wonderful feelings around all the people I have called my friends whether they are in my life at present or not. Therefore, they are still my friends, and I love and appreciate them still today.
An alternative to this negative belief:
I have the capacity to co-create lasting and fulfilling friendships with people with whom I can be completely myself.
Emotional payoff of this alternative belief: I can now appreciate the people in my life whom I call friends. I can stay focused in the moment and appreciate the friendships I have had in the past and the ones I have been blessed with now. I can feel comfortable being myself with the people who have shown an interest in being my friend because I know that they are the types of people who will love and accept me as I am. I am free to cultivate uplifting and soul enriching friendships and continue to attract accepting loving people into my life.
My Thoughts on This Exercise
I feel so much more optimistic about friendship now. I believe that I will be surrounded by people who love and accept me for who I am. I am excited about who I will meet and the future friendships I will make. I also appreciate the friendships I have now, and I am now more aware of what is rather than what isn’t. It’s much more fulfilling and enriching to believe that I have the capacity to co-create lasting and fulfilling friendships with people with whom I can be completely myself than to believe that I will never have close friendships with people with whom I can be completely myself. The alternative is so much better.
If you struggle to find self-love and self-worth, I hope reading this exercise helps you examine some of your negative core beliefs that are keeping you from being happy. I hope that you will be able to find alternative core beliefs to your negative ones that will enrich your life and empower you. I hope that you will always remember who you are and what you are capable of. We all have the power to create a life that we love living; a life worth waking up for. We have only to believe. I wish you all the best.