We all believe lies unconsciously – we just don’t realize it. Lies have power if you believe them.
Let me give you an example from someone I know personally. Amanda had a good job at a large corporation. In time, she was promoted to a new position. However, in this new position she was required to give presentations before a group of her peers and supervisors periodically. She was terrified of public speaking. This was a big deal to her. Her first presentation left her sweating and miserable! Her stomach was full of butterflies and she was sweating so profusely that she was very embarrassed by how wet her clothes were. It was noticeable to her coworkers and they commented on it.
She seriously considered going back to her old position because she HATED giving presentations. We talked about it. I asked her why she hated it so much. She said, “I don’t want to look like a dork!”
This was an accomplished professional woman – what made her think she would look like a “dork” by giving a presentation? We did one of the “heart exercises” from my book together to find out. She discovered that she developed this fear of public speaking from a distortion she believed about herself – a conclusion she came to in middle school. Can you believe that? She came to a faulty conclusion about herself and about “how life works” when she was 13 years old and it was still holding her back in her thirties!
Yet, no one had ever asked her what she believed about herself. She never even thought about it. It was simply her view of the world and of herself. She assumed she saw things clearly.
That Lie was majorly distorting her ability to do her job and enjoy it. It was creating a LOT of stress for her and making her very anxious. She was miserable – all because of a little lie she believed.
Thankfully, she was ready to give up that lie and find out the truth – which is not always easy, you know? We did the “heart exercise” and she got the truth she needed. The next time she did a presentation, I was eager to hear how it went. She called me as soon as she got back to her desk. She was thrilled! She did her presentation very well without a glitch and she didn’t even sweat a drop!
The Lies you believe about yourself are very powerful – they are also very sneaky. You don’t even realize they are there. And yet they can really wreck your life.
Here’s a real good indicator that you may believe a lie – look for fear, anxiety, worry or stress. Start with the negative fruit that a lie brings you and you’ll generally be on the right path.
Most of the lies we believe are things we don’t even think about – we just assume our perspective on the world is accurate and we base our decisions on this assumption. Because of this, I’ve discovered (by working with my coaching clients) that we need a way to access these unconscious distortions that does not rely on our ability to identify them.
I’ve developed the following “heart exercise” to help people identify lies they believe – specifically about themselves. And it works. People are astounded at the lies they uncover and the truth they receive when they do this exercise. Try it yourself!
This exercise and others like it are in my book, Freedom through Forgiveness.
Step: Lie Detector: Self Concept
Go to a place where you will not be interrupted. Take a few deep breaths, letting them out slowly to help you relax and to quiet your mind.
Say these statements/questions out loud and then wait for an answer. An answer may come as a feeling, a thought, a picture in your mind, a word, a memory or just an inner knowing. You can do this alone or with a friend. If no answer comes to the first question, go to a different step – this may not be the right time for this step.
“Spirit of Truth, is there a lie I believe about myself?” (pause and wait for an answer)
“Who taught me that lie?” (pause and wait for an answer)
“I forgive (name) for teaching me this lie. I forgive myself for receiving this lie and allowing it to influence my thoughts. I release myself from this lie. I give it up and let it go.”
“What truth do I need to hear?” (pause and wait for an answer)
“I receive the truth that (the truth).”
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I’ve personally done this exercise over and over and each time I discover a new lie I believe – and I find the truth! It’s really wonderful – I highly recommend it. 🙂