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How to Think Your Way to the Life You Want
A Guide to Understanding How Your Thoughts and Beliefs Create Your Life
By BRUCE I. DOYLE III
Hampton Roads Publishing Company, Inc.Copyright © 2011 Bruce I. Doyle III
All rights reserved.
How Thoughts Work
Did you ever have thoughts that you didn't want to share? Thoughts about other people that you knew would upset them if you verbalized them? Maybe about their clothes, manners, or things they did that bothered you. You hesitated to share your thoughts because you wanted to maintain peace in the relationship. You may have even berated yourself for having such awful thoughts—"How could I think such a thing?"
Most people consider thoughts as ideas or notions that reside in their heads for their own private use. Thoughts help you to figure out things, evaluate situations, make decisions, and generate feelings, and sometimes they seem to drive you crazy (well, almost).
Thoughts or ideas may seem to reside in your head, but, in reality, each thought exists as a minute wave of energy called a thoughtform. A thoughtform is real—it exists. It happens to not be noticed by you because its energy vibration (frequency) is outside the range of human senses. It operates faster than the speed of light and is, therefore, not visible to you.
It might be helpful for you to understand this concept by relating it to something you already know, but which you probably have not given much thought. If you're like most of us, you have a favorite radio station. Perhaps an FM station for listening to "your kind" of music. Let's say it's 102.7 on the dial.
What that number means is that the frequency of transmission for that station is 102.7 megahertz (megacycles). Mega is the metric designation for one million. The energy transmitted by the station vibrates continuously in the space around you. But unless your radio is tuned to the frequency of 102.7 million cycles per second, you are unaware of it.
My point is this: There is a lot of information vibrating in the space around us that we are not aware of because our senses are limited to a specific range of frequencies. And some of the information vibrating in the space is in the form of tiny, subtle thoughtforms.
The mission of each thoughtform is to fulfill the intent of the thought—to carry out the thinker's desires or intentions. It does so by attracting to it similar thoughtforms to help it fulfill itself. In effect, you are like a radio station, WYOU, broadcasting your desires, intentions, and ideas out into the universe—completely uncensored. Picture a king who sends selected members of his court out into his kingdom to fulfill his desires (even his secret ones).
Thoughts exist as thoughtforms.
Have you ever had someone say to you, "Watch what you wish for; you're liable to get it"? Have you ever had the same thought, at exactly the same time, as someone close to you? Have people ever accused you of reading their minds? Are there people in your life that you feel "tuned in" to? Some individuals are very sensitive to picking up thought-form vibrations. If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are probably one of them.
Thoughts that you accept as true become your beliefs. Together, all your individual beliefs make up your belief system.
If I told you that the moon is made of swiss cheese, I doubt that you would believe me. Based on what you already know, you wouldn't consider it to be true, and it would not become part of your belief system. But if I said, "The weather patterns around the world are going to continue to change dramatically," you would probably agree. Some of you have real tangible evidence of this already. You would feel that my statement is true and add it to your already-existing beliefs.
Beliefs are specialized thoughtforms that become part of your individual belief system. Furthermore, existing as waves of energy that you radiate out into the universe, they accumulate similar thoughtforms in order to create events, circumstances, and relationships that substantiate your beliefs.
"Wait a minute," you say. "Don't you have that backward? I experience something, then I can believe it. You know the old saying, 'I'll believe it when I see it.'"
Yes, that is a very old saying, but in reality, it happens the other way around. You will experience something only if you believe it. The belief must come first. If you experienced something that you didn't believe, how could you believe it? Your experience confirms your belief—belief precedes experience. It's the way the universe works.
If you believe that you're poor, can you experience being rich? If you believe that you're fat, can you experience being thin? If you believe that you're dumb, can you experience being smart? Think about it! What you believe is what you experience.
Beliefs are usually described as either conscious beliefs or subconscious beliefs.
Conscious beliefs are those that you are aware of; with some prompting, you could write down a few. Conscious beliefs can be empowering—such as "I'm smart" and "Life's exciting"—or limiting, such as "I'm clumsy" and "Men hate me."
Subconscious beliefs are beliefs that you are not aware of. You are unaware that they exist, and the experiences they create for you are seen as "That's the way life is." You have no sense of responsibility for having accepted them as beliefs. The beliefs are transparent to you.
An example of a limiting subconscious belief might be "I can never have things my way," stemming from a childhood decision about authority. This belief could show up as repeated conflicts with bosses later in life. Such a person might frequently say, "All bosses are jerks," not realizing that he is operating out of a transparent belief. As you know, not all people experience their bosses that way.
An example of an empowering subconscious belief might be something like "I'm always safe." People with this belief might not be aware of it, yet they live their lives having no fear for their safety. They would simply not attract a potentially harmful situation and would see no threat to themselves even if one arose.
In my belief model, you can see that there are basically four areas of beliefs that can be considered. At the conscious and the subconscious levels, you have both empowering and limiting beliefs. It's the limiting beliefs that we'll discuss in more detail. After you eliminate these beliefs, you will expend less energy and attention creating the circumstances that you choose to have in your life.
Every thought and every belief has its corresponding thought form, which is a dynamic wave of energy that has two key parameters: a frequency of vibration corresponding to its intent and a magnitude corresponding to the amount of desire associated with it. Each of our belief systems can be represented by an energetic signature (not unlike our personalized signature) that is unique to us and essentially defines us. We are all like energetic magnets drawing our experiences to us.
Have you ever noticed that, when you meet them for the first time, you feel comfortable with some people and you don't feel comfortable with others? You're sensing their energy fields. The ones with whom you feel comfortable will most likely have similar beliefs. Trust your feelings.
When you are in close relationships with people, you can feel that they are upset before they say a word. You can sense that their energy has shifted—to a lower frequency.
Your basic energy signature is the sum of all your thoughts and beliefs. You define your personality, physical attributes, and behavior. You are the only one who can create or change your thoughts and your beliefs. And your beliefs create what you experience as life.
Have you ever tried to change someone else? Didn't work, did it? No one can change someone else's thoughts. Individuals must want to change and do so on their own. Consequently, if each of us is responsible for our own thoughts, we are likewise responsible for our own feelings. Your feelings are generated by your thoughts. Notice that when you have positive thoughts, you feel good. When you think negative thoughts, how do you feel?
Have you ever been accused of hurting others' feelings? When you realize that you can't create their thoughts, you likewise understand that you can't create their feelings. How freeing! Now you can let go of the old belief that we all grew up with: "You shouldn't hurt other people's feelings." Naturally, there is appropriateness in all things. But you can't determine others' feelings; their feelings are strictly theirs.
My daughter Megan's college psychology text had an example of a man who was severely bumped from behind on a crowded subway. His immediate reaction was raw anger, the source of which is his visualization of a large robust woman bullying her way through the crowd. As he turned to confront her, he realized that the person who bumped him was blind. His feelings immediately shifted as his mind filled with thoughts of compassion. His thoughts, his feelings.
Do you remember your experience—how you felt—when you believed in Santa Claus? Quite exciting, wasn't it? What was your experience when you found out that he really didn't exist, and you changed your belief? Took a lot of fun out of your life, didn't it? Different belief, different experience!
Shared beliefs can extend to many individuals. The different religions operating on the planet are examples of many individuals sharing common beliefs. All the various social, financial, and political structures around the globe are also examples of belief systems. The important thing to remember is that each individual has the right to his or her own experiences and, consequently, to his or her own beliefs.
It's when you try to convince others that your beliefs are the only truth that difficulty arises. You see, we all have our own truths. Truth belongs to the believer. There are as many truths as there are believers. Many can share common beliefs, but essentially each of us creates our own unique perspective of the world based on our beliefs.
In essence then, each of us lives in and is responsible for our own world. Certainly your world is different than mine and, likewise, that of your neighbors. Did you ever wonder how you appear to someone else? Did you ever wonder what it was like to walk in someone else's shoes? We all see life from our own perspectives (based on our beliefs), and for each person, it's different. In fact, the only real difference in any of us is what we believe. Sure, many of us look different, but maybe that's also a belief.
If you find yourself trying to convince someone about something you believe, ask yourself if you really believe it. Needing to convince someone else about your truth would imply that you doubt your own belief. When you really believe something, there is no doubt. Hoping it might be true would allow for doubt. When you have no doubt, you can stand in the face of any challenge unshaken and without emotion—you know the truth.
Understanding the structure of thoughtforms will greatly assist you in understanding their impact on belief systems.
In my view, thoughtforms tend to come in clusters, much like clumps of grapes. Take a clump of grapes, pull off the grapes, and you have an array of branches going off in all directions. As you go back toward the main branch, the branches get thicker and stronger. You end up with the core branch.
In my analogy, the core branch equates to the root thoughtform—the initial and deep-rooted thoughtform that is the primary cause of the issue involved. With any new idea, issue, or situation, the initial thoughtform that you generate establishes the basic pattern, or blueprint, of experience. Subsequent thoughts and beliefs relating to that subject will attach themselves to the root thoughtform like branches in a cluster. To clear out an issue, you have to pull the original thoughtform out by the roots.
A former colleague of mine, whenever he encounters something new, usually says, "This is going to be hard." Guess what he experiences? His life is a series of struggles that require a lot of his effort to overcome.
The strongest and most influential limiting beliefs with which you will have to deal will probably be about your self-concept (your beliefs about how you see yourself), your "I am" statements. These beliefs usually originate in infancy and/or childhood. They are often referred to as conditioning or programming. I will not use either of these terms. To me, they imply that something was done to you—an implication that tends to generate blame and avoid self-responsibility. No one other than the believer—you—can accept or choose a belief.
So even as an infant, you did the choosing. Since the experience probably involved a caretaker or someone in an influential position, you naturally accepted that person's assessment. What reason did you have to doubt their assessment of you? None.
But now, as an adult, you can reevaluate your decision to see if you still wish to hold specific beliefs that are no longer in your best interest. Beliefs are like ideas—good ones you keep, limiting ones you discard.
An Empowering Example
Let's look at the favorable impact of an empowering belief first.
Jane, as a small child, had a very positive environment. She was loved by her parents, siblings, and friends. She was encouraged to try things and was supported and given praise. She adopted the belief, "I always have everything I need, and I am secure."
That basic belief, in order to fulfill itself, acted to positively influence every major facet of her life. Throughout her life, unless impacted by a conflicting belief, she experienced that belief. As an adult, she saw its effect in her work—a fulfilling job. Her finances continually sustained her needs. Her relationships were satisfying and stable and provided her with the love that she deserved. That strong empowering belief provided a very supportive root for her life's experiences.
A Limiting Example
Jim, on the other hand, was not as fortunate. Jim's environment stemmed from a marriage that was not planned. His father married his mother because he thought doing so was his duty, but he resented Jim for having been born. He paid little attention to Jim except to criticize or severely discipline him. Fortunately, Jim's mother was caring and loved him dearly. But her affection for him only angered his jealous father.
Out of all of this, Jim soon decided (created the belief) that it was his fault that his parents were unhappy. This thought translated into, "I'm responsible for others' unhappiness." Can you see how that root belief would negatively impact every major area of Jim's life? What a burden to feel responsible for other people's unhappiness—a life of trying to please others.
How would Jim, as an adult, negotiate a deal or ask for a raise if he thought the other person might get upset? Can you imagine Jim trying to please his mate all of the time? How would it feel to Jim if someone around him were not happy? He would always feel like it was his fault. Life for Jim would mean no emotional freedom for himself; he would always be monitoring his behavior. That's what a limiting belief does. And to Jim, his behavior would feel normal. The limitation would be transparent to him.
Again, remember that there is no blame for Jim's father; it was Jim who decided to accept what he believed about himself. At the time, that belief may have made a lot of sense. A very strong limiting factor in the blueprint for determining Jim's life experience was put in place by what might appear to be a simple, harmless belief.
Once a root thoughtform is established, incidents will occur to continue to provide evidence to the believer that the belief is true. Let's try another example to further illustrate the point.
Sally's mother had to attend an unexpected business meeting during a time when her regular sitter was not available. After several phone calls, her mother was finally able to reach a neighbor, who agreed to look after the child. The neighbor was a nice lady, but she was not used to being around four-year-old children.
Sally sensed her awkwardness. She didn't feel at all comfortable with the new sitter and started to cry. The sitter, trying to get her to stop, began a series of make-believe games that involved making strange faces. This just added to Sally's fear, and she cried harder. The sitter, in sheer frustration, picked up Sally, took her into her bedroom, and plopped her on the bed. As the sitter slammed the door behind her, she hollered, "You're the worst kid I've ever seen." Sally, in that moment of vulnerability, decided, "There's something wrong with me."
As Sally grew older, incidents occurred and similar thoughtforms were created to fulfill the intent of the core belief, "There's something wrong with me." These similar thoughtforms attached to the root thoughtform like the branches of the grape cluster we discussed. All areas of her life became affected by this very basic core belief—of which, by the way, she was totally unaware.
The following figure contains some examples of real-life situations that could stem from an early belief that "there is something wrong with me." The related beliefs about poor eyesight at six years of age, difficulty with academics in the teens, work issues at age thirty, and a relationship issue at age forty could all develop from the one, simple, limiting belief, "There's something wrong with me."
Excerpted from How to Think Your Way to the Life You Want by BRUCE I. DOYLE III. Copyright © 2011 Bruce I. Doyle III. Excerpted by permission of Hampton Roads Publishing Company, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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