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Core Belief Therapy

Our core beliefs are our “truth” and they can be modified which will result in our being able to look at life differently, to change our behavior more easily and to obtain more satisfaction and happiness in life. Negative core beliefs can range from, “I’m not smart enough” to “People don’t respect me” to “No one will ever truly love me” or “Why does my life not work for me?” They can also take the form of, “I’m a poor communicator” or “Conflict makes me feel uncomfortable so I avoid conflicts at all costs” or “All people cheat on me because I don’t deserve to be happy and have a committed faithful relationship”.

After you have identified a problematic core belief that you currently have, ask yourself how you came to have that belief. You may recall am embarrassing moment or event in your life or a shameful event or traumatic event from which this “truth” took hold and became your reality. Your belief may have come from a single embarrassing or difficulty moment or it may have come from a chronic life situation such as having an alcoholic parent or having been emotionally, verbally or physically abused over an extended period of time. This creates this stuck point that created the negative core belief that you are currently stuck with. This belief is a perceptual filter that filters every thought, feeling, belief and experience that you have after it has been formed. The good news is that core beliefs can be changed from negative ones ro positive ones!

If your negative core belief was created in a single incident or situation, picture yourself back in that moment, imagine yourself finding your voice and your saying what you wanted to say to those involved and didn’t at the time that the situation occurred. Now, say what you want to say now out-loud and repeat it five times so that it is encoded in memory. Tell those who were involved how you feel about what happened or what they said to you or did to you. You are now empowered and you can choose how you want to think, feel and act about this situation or incident that occurred in the past. Think and feel and experience what just happened. The most important thing to remember is that it occurred in the PAST and is over and it is NOT occurring NOW! You have a choice now about how you want to handle it TODAY. Yesterday is today’s past and it has already happened.  Remember, finding your voice is a way of freeing yourself from your negative past and being stuck in a negative memory forever.  Also, reflect on how different your beliefs about yourself would be if this event had never happened. 

If your negative core belief was created by chronic life situations, such as chronic abuse, poverty, neglect or having a chronic health problem, remind yourself that your negative core beliefs are only a product of your experience of having those chronic life issues. Imagine yourself as growing up and being raised in a loving and supportive family and your not having had these chronic problems.  How would you think, feel and act differently if these events had not happened.  Since they are not happening today, why do you choose to act as though they are happening today? This is a self-inflicted problem that can be avoided. You can say to yourself, “I don’t need to be imprisoned by my past if I choose to free myself from my negative limiting beliefs”. You are much more than your past experiences and today and tomorrow are part of the rest of your life. You can write your life script anyway you want it! Call my office today at 281-444-2678 if you would like to learn more about how to change your core beliefs from negative ones to positive ones!

John Garlock, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT, LCDC

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