I want to explore the concept of limiting beliefs. Some of, ok, many of our beliefs come from our parents, teachers, and religious institutions very early. And these early beliefs are strong and foundational bc they come from such strong influences with a higher position of power over us. We could either be put into a small box of expectations or we could have had an open field with space to grow and explore. Before we even begin to figure if we have limiting thoughts, we gotta figure out if we were raised in a box or a field.
I think early on, some structure and standards create guidelines. But when things are too strict, it doesn’t give a person the tools or confidence to grow into an individual. Like when you’re guided into a certain profession, the family business, to dress like “this” bc this is how a good woman dresses, or to act like this bc this is what a good man does. These are boxes.
Shame and praise are used to keep you in these boxes. Early in our lives shame and praise comes from parents, teachers, and religious leaders and do shape behaviors. As we get older we don’t even need outside ppl to shame or praise us, it’s rote memorization at that point.
As a mom, man, the shaming tactics come quick and easy and sometimes wrapped in singsong voices. Ppl being “concerned” while seemingly questioning your momming techniques. Will you breastfeed? Give formula? Oh please don’t give formula! You co-sleep? You’ve already started working out!? You aren’t gonna cover up as you nurse? You are going back to work so soon? You haven’t showered? You’re having wine? There’s literally no limits of questioning a new mom. I’m fairly fortunate bc I raised my kids hundreds of miles from my family, so I was able to do my thing with without too much input. But the opinions laced with shame are always lurking.
You have to really be self assured, be rooted in your beliefs and actions, and have the ability to listen yet decline the advice. This is where relationships sometimes get tested. Ppl, especially older, think that advice should be taken and it’s disrespectful otherwise. Here is where finding your voice and footing is key.
Now to break free of limited beliefs, we have to first understand how we got to that point. Why do we think we can’t wear certain things? Why do we think a good mom is an overworked mom? Why can’t older women wear (insert some fashion taboo)? Why is self care so hard? If I don’t wanna make my bed, why do I feel so guilty? Our childhoods do shape us. And breaking free of those limits means breaking from the need for praise and the weight of shaming tactics.
This topic is heavy and requires a lot of introspection. But this is Step Zero that sets the scene for new beliefs and affirmations. I have no answers here. This is just a jumpstart for YOU to do the work. Namaste 🙏🏾