How the Limiting Beliefs We Pick as a Child, How They Impact Us in Our Adulthood

by | Feb 28, 2023 | Mind

Limiting beliefs are the little voice in our mind that tells us what we can’t do and what will never work for us. This is also referred to as a child’s filter. The child has to protect themselves from the world, and thus they limit themselves to certain things. So how does this happen?

When we are kids, most of us love playing games, trying new things and exploring our surroundings. We want to be happy and curious about everything around us. When children play games, they tend to focus on the fun aspects rather than seeing the negative aspects, and if the game is not fun, they don’t play it again. Similarly, they see life in this way. However, as life continues, the negative experiences we live through begin to stick with us. 

This is when limiting beliefs are created! Limiting beliefs are established by looking at how we were treated as a child. If we didn’t get much love from our parents, weren’t praised enough for doing well in school, or heard things like: “You can’t do that because your brother/sister always got first place,” or “You never stood a chance,” then no matter what we do in life, we will always believe that this won’t work out for us because we have been let down so many times before.

How we see the world results from the decisions we make while growing up. However, as adults, if we want to break old habits and find new ways of thinking about ourselves and our lives, we have to do so from childhood onward.

Limiting beliefs are the hidden reasons why we don’t believe we can have what we want or achieve our dreams. These beliefs stop us from growing and changing our future. To know more about limiting beliefs, download Joyscore.

What You Can Do To Overcome Limiting Beliefs

Before we go into the specifics of what you can do to overcome limiting beliefs, let’s talk about the causes of limiting beliefs. When we are kids, our family are the ones who matter the most to us. Our parents and what they said to us had the most impact on us. As adults, though, we start to see that our limitations are actually caused by our thoughts, beliefs and lessons that we have learned from life. In order to move forward, we have to learn to forgive what our parents did or didn’t give to us and start to “disempower our limiting beliefs”. Once you recognise your limiting beliefs, you can choose not to believe in them anymore.

The Good News

Is it Possible to Overcome Limiting Beliefs? The good news is that “limiting beliefs can be overcome”! For example, let’s say you grew up in a family where you were told that you were bad and were treated poorly by your parents. This is a very common experience among children growing up in dysfunctional families and is called childhood abuse. Traumatic experiences in childhood like this can cause severe damage to our self-esteem as well as beliefs. A person who has experienced childhood abuse might tell themselves, “I am not worthy of love or happiness because my parents didn’t love me and treated me badly”. This belief is called a core belief because it is the core of your thoughts about who you are and what you deserve as a person. 

To start working on your limiting beliefs, you must first recognise when you are doing it. This means you need to notice when you are thinking negatively when you are feeling stuck or overwhelmed. Once you notice when you are doing these things, you can replace your negative thoughts with positive ones. This means that when you notice yourself thinking negatively, you can choose to replace it with a thought like, “I have a choice in life; I don’t have to feel stuck about anything; I get to choose how I feel”. Another positive thought is, “I have the power to choose how I feel and what I think about things, so I choose to be happy and inspired”. If you want to overcome limiting beliefs and start believing that you are worthy of love, happiness and success, you must disempower the core belief that you are unworthy of these things. You do this by replacing the negative thought with a new positive thought that is motivating and inspiring. Don’t be afraid to spend time with yourself. The more you spend time with yourself, the better you understand yourself. And to overcome limiting beliefs, we should be self-aware first, and then we can learn to reframe ourselves. 

Overcoming limiting beliefs is not a one-size-fits-all methodology. For a few people, alternative processes like therapy, meditation, or other forms of self-improvement may work best. In the end, only you know what works best for you!

Why You Need to Overcome Limiting Beliefs

How the Limiting Beliefs We Pick as a Child, How They Impact Us in Our Adulthood

Limiting beliefs are caused by childhood experiences and how we were treated. This means that these beliefs are created by the people around you and are not something you create yourself. However, you might be wondering, “How come I can change my limiting beliefs and my family can’t? Why do I have to do this?” Remember, your loved ones have had negative experiences too, and therefore, they might have picked up limiting beliefs from their own family or parents. We are all on our own journey to healing, and we can only focus on healing our own limiting beliefs, not those around us. 

Tips for Overcoming Limiting Beliefs

  1. Pick a specific belief that you want to overcome. Let’s say it is the belief that you will never be able to overcome debt. Now, you can use this belief as a guide and make a plan to overcome it. Make a list of all you want to accomplish in your life. Go through your list and mark down the things that you have already accomplished or that you have accomplished in the past. This will give you a feeling of satisfaction and will help you pick a specific goal that you can work towards. 
  2. Pick a belief that is causing you negative emotions. For example, when you notice yourself getting angry at a certain belief, become aware of that belief and ask yourself where it originated from? Once there is an awareness of where it came from, you can begin to let it go, remembering this belief did not come from you. 

Anyone can overcome limiting beliefs and create a better life. Limiting beliefs are developed by the people around us and are not something we create ourselves. However, there is a key that opens the door to a better life, and that key is positive thinking. Yes, it is possible to be happy and freer than you ever thought possible with the right beliefs!

Dr. Bob Singhal

Professor Bhupendra 'Bob' Singhal, has taught creativity by joy and right-brain thinking, is a renowned international architect, won major design competitions, has over 70 awards, publications, and media mentions, and served as President of the American Institute of Architects South Bay. In 2011, in his book Joy in Health and Happiness: Your Optimal Path to Success, Professor Singhal wrote about the transformative power of joy and helped readers learn to enhance their daily experience of it.


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