At the start of the day yesterday, I held a core belief that all relationships end, usually badly. It was, for me, obviously correct. By the end of the day, it was obviously incorrect. Here is the thought that replaced it: It is the nature of relationships to change. Ending is just one kind of change a relationship can make. Reading that statement now, it is as obviously correct as the old thought used to be.
It’s what I would call a breakthrough. The change was sudden, and I could feel its impact immediately. This is what happens when you play the game honestly. Keep reading.
“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
The most important thing to notice is that the new truth doesn’t invalidate, negate, or contradict the old truth. It renders it obsolete, just by being a model that matches more evidence than the old model.
I’m pretty sure that I know more people who have been divorced than people still married to their first spouse. But not every marriage ends in divorce. Not every friendship ends with a bitter fight. Sometimes, people get along just fine for their entire lives. By changing my belief from “all relationships end” to “all relationships change,” I make my belief correct more of the time. At every level, I like being right, so my mind is perfectly happy to change.
What if I’d concocted some “affirmation” or “positive thought” that contradicted my old core belief? If I had told myself something that wasn’t believable at all, until I believed it? Something like “relationships always work out in the end,” or “relationships are easy,” or (sorry / not sorry) “families are forever”?
I think people drive themselves crazy doing this. Exactly this.
Don’t be like that. Seek out your self-defeating beliefs, but don’t try to fight them. Replace them with beliefs that are more realistic, more honest, more empowering.