Every day we experience the world around us through the lens of our respective belief systems. Some of these beliefs are so ingrained in our minds that weâ€™re no longer conscious of why or how they became part of our mental framework in the first place. Beliefs that our parents instilled in us as children, ideas about our own personalities or the world around us that we heard from friends or partners, or assumptions we absorbed into our psyches as a result of difficult life events.
But what happens when we challenge our deeply held beliefs? Do they still have meaning within the context of the lives we live, or the lives we want to be living?
EmPOWERed YOUth is a fabulous book by father and son, Jeffrey and Michael Eisen that demonstrates the impact of questioning our beliefs. It tells the story of their own personal struggles, their relationship, and the power of open communication and support between parents and children. There are many life lessons in this book, which offers moving narratives as well as powerful exercises for the reader to engage in. But what is readily apparent is that by examining their respective belief systems, both Jeffrey and Michael were able to consciously repair many areas of their (and each otherâ€™s) lives that were causing them pain.
Itâ€™s not always easy to explore your belief system, not to mention letting go of beliefs that youâ€™ve held onto for decades. Iâ€™d liken it to getting rid of the most stubborn weeds in my garden. But as Iâ€™ve discovered over the last couple of months, (with much credit to Jeffrey Eisen) releasing certain patterns of thinking — or â€śbelief habitsâ€ť as Iâ€™ve come to call them â€“ is extremely liberating.
This week, allow yourself to observe the lens through which you view the world. And ask yourself, what beliefs no longer serve you?