The Power of Belief

I have been reading a lot recently about the mind/body connection in my research on mindfulness and meditation, but also in other places, like literature about alternative medicine. EFT is one form of such alternative healing. Others include Reiki, acupuncture, and visualization. Another alternative method of interest to me right now is the Healing Code. The book by the same name discusses science supporting the mind/body connection (it occurs to me as I write this how ridiculous it is to have to state “mind/body connection” as though there is any doubt that they are connected! Unfortunately, the medical establishment isn’t quite there…). For example, there are experiments verifying the heritability of cellular memories of trauma. That’s right…you can inherit the effects of something experienced by your ancestors. Freaky, right?

Not so freaky if you have any exposure to quantum physics, or have an inkling of what Einstein was getting at late in his career.

This Healing Code theory which has reportedly worked for a ton of folks for everything from major depression, to toenail fungus, to cancer, is based on the notion that the body has the ability to heal itself given the right conditions (not so new), and that what may be preventing healing is destructive cellular memories and unhealthy beliefs lingering from a negative emotional experience from our past or that of our relatives (pretty far out!). The Center for Disease Control (a federal agency, no less!) finds that 90% of diseases that trigger a visit to the doctor are stress related, so in fact, I guess it isn’t that far out at all. The ACE study also found that adverse childhood experiences are correlated to incidence of all types of diseases, and that the relationship is dose-dependent (more bad experiences=more disease).

There’s a recent blog post by a mom with gluten intolerance that exposes new information indicating leaky gut syndrome is a factor in ALL autoimmune diseases. Leaky gut is thought to be caused by, among other things, adrenal fatigue, an effect of chronic stress. Conversely, addressing chronic stress seems to be a factor in reducing the severity of any disease you can possibly name, including psoriasis, allergies, and irritable bowel. There is evidence that mindfulness practices can alleviate everything from epilepsy, sleep disorders, and addiction, to depression, anxiety, and caregiver stress, just to name a few.

I have been experimenting with the Healing Code for my allergies (costs nothing but 6 minutes, 3 times per day), and it’s got me thinking about memories and beliefs, and how they contribute to the stress load. They are everywhere and they can be so subtle. In my own case, for instance, there’s my memory of the childhood misery of hayfever, of being told I was allergic to certain foods and accepting it as a lifelong sentence. What if I didn’t label myself as having allergies, as being “sensitive”, and automatically assuming I need medication to tolerate spring and fall? What if I no longer identified with that label, no longer saw a long list of environmental threats to react to? Would it make a difference? So far the Healing Code seems to be working. My ragweed allergies seem to be the mildest I’ve ever experienced, even though the season is in full swing.

This has me thinking about other beliefs, even more subtle ones, and the way they influence my life. For instance, anticipating that I must protect myself from certain people, or have recovery time after certain events because I am an introvert. I’ve been proven wrong on these automatic assumptions plenty of times, yet I persist in assuming that this label “introvert” is static, permanent, and I can predict my reactions based on it. In fact, sometimes I need less alone time, sometimes more, and sometimes none.

Even more subtle still – I am driving home from visiting family, and become predictably sleepy around 4pm, with the sun shining through the windshield, about an hour after eating a jumbo Payday bar and no lunch. I start calculating how long ’til I get home, how much time after that until I have to start cooking dinner, and whether I can delay unpacking to squeeze in a nap, and for how long. Then it occurred to me – this is all based on the presumption that I will still feel this sleepy when I get home! Then I realized that instead of just coping with sleepiness in the moment, I had unwittingly extended this discomfort beyond the trip, assumed I would be miserably tired all evening, grumpy, not get anything done, and maybe even become ill due to being so tired! I dropped the assumption, and none of those things turned out to be true.

So, what beliefs do you hold that are holding you back? Are you attached to something negative that defines you, that you don’t know what it would be like to live without? Do you believe you’re sick a lot? Not a morning person? Afraid of animals, heights, spiders? Do you hold a belief you’d be happier if you were ten pounds lighter, better looking,  had more money or a better wardrobe, or your hair was straighter, thicker, wavier, longer?

How about even more subtle than that, at a level below conscious thought – do you believe you shouldn’t be too happy, too wealthy, too successful? That people might not like you if you were? Or maybe you believe you aren’t allowed to relax, or to enjoy yourself, or to be happy unless you’ve suffered enough, or worked hard enough or long enough to deserve it. Maybe somewhere, there’s a hidden belief that no matter what you do, you just aren’t worthy of happiness, joy, or peace.

These beliefs can’t persist if they are exposed to the light. Take a look. I hope now you are at least curious about the ways your beliefs might contribute to creating your reality. Our beliefs about ourselves and the world predispose us to react to it in ways that reinforce our beliefs. The details are in a psychology lesson for another post, but rest assured that your beliefs do have the power to shape your world. Now the science even seems to suggest the cells in your body are programmed to respond according to what you believe.

If you thought you were creating your own reality every day, would you do anything differently? What kind of reality would you create for yourself? Feel free to share below. I’d love to hear from you.

About Cynthia M Clingan

Cynthia Clingan is a licensed professional clinical counselor in Columbus, Ohio who offers somatic psychotherapy, spiritual coaching, and meditation and mindfulness instruction.
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1 Response to The Power of Belief

  1. Pingback: The Body-Mind Connection: Part Two | Hands-of-Faith Holistic Healing Centers® Blog

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