Belief is a powerful human experience. When we truly, deeply believe in something, we create a law and a value in our life. Our beliefs define our morals, values, and ethics. How we believe and what we believe directs our decision making, influencing our actions, thoughts, and behaviors.
What is a Belief?
By definition, a belief is a form of acceptance. A belief is an acceptance that something, whatever it is you believe in, is true or exists. Belief can also be defined as trust itself and faith. Having a belief is having confidence in the thing that is believed in. For example, you believe that the sun will come up every day. Science tells you there is no reason to question that fact. Unequivocally, you accept that the science exists and is truthful- the sun will indeed come up. Each night when you go to sleep, you put your confidence in that. Each morning when you wake up, you are proven right. Thousands of years of human existence has made this belief concrete. The world would be greatly threatened if the sun didn’t come up. Not only would the entire existence of the world change, but a basic belief system of everyone on earth would change.
What happens when we change our beliefs?
If the sun were not to come up one day, what would that mean? Scientifically, it would be catastrophic. Metaphorically, it would mean a widespread force of belief change. In our lives, we experience something similar and reality-shattering regularly, but on a significantly smaller scale. When our beliefs are challenged, our lives are challenged. Trust, faith, and confidence are strong spiritual and human experiences which shape us. Should our beliefs- our trust, faith, and confidence- be shaped differently, our lives are then differently shaped.
Those who have lived with active addiction or alcoholism bear witness to this process. Many addicts and alcoholics live in the belief that they can stop when they want to, manage themselves, and control the way they use substances. Eventually, that belief has to change. Once someone who is addicted to drugs and alcohol realizes they can no longer believe in their ability to stop, control, or manage their substance abuse, their belief changes. Immediately they are put in a position of having to find another belief. The ending of one belief does not necessitate the birth of another. Despite their recognition, addicts and alcoholics may take months or years to come to believe that there is a way to get sober and stay sober for the rest of their lives. Underneath the surface of beliefs regarding addiction are beliefs regarding the self. They must first believe that they are worth recovering, that they can recover, and that recovery will work for them. Upon adopting these new beliefs, their lives change yet again, and they set themselves on the path of life-changing recovery.
When you change your life, you change your legacy.
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