Each of us carries a mental blueprint, a picture of ourselves. Whether this is vague or well-defined — it is there.
This is our conception of “the sort of person I am”, built up from beliefs about ourselves, formed unconsciously from experiences, successes, failures, humiliations, triumphs, and the way others have reacted to us…
Especially in childhood!
We then mentally construct a “self-image” and once an idea or belief goes into this picture, it becomes “true” for us.
We then act upon this image as if it were true.
The “self-image” is the key to human personality and human behavior.
Change the self-image and you change the personality and the behavior.
But more than this.
The “self-image” sets the boundaries of individual accomplishment.
It’s the foundation of everything you are, do, and have.
Therefore your experiences verify and reinforce the image you have of yourself.
In other words, your experiences program your mind and program you to become the person you are today.
This sets up a vicious or beneficial cycle depending on how you see yourself…
I grew up with the belief that I wasn’t good enough.
As a very young child, I was often told by someone in my family that I wouldn’t add up to much in life.
He was someone I looked up to – my father.
I was constantly reminded that I was a failure, regardless of what I did I couldn’t seem to do anything right.
I ended up believing this limiting belief and it shaped my relationship with myself.
As I grew up I saw nothing but lack and limitation in myself and so this is how I believed others saw me.
Not good enough…
My self-image was built upon this untruth and my behavior and the results in my life were consistent with this limiting belief, the image I had of myself.
When I got into high school, these feelings and behaviors got worse until I found alcohol…
Alcohol became the answer, it made me feel whole, comfortable, and confident so I became addicted to it.
This created a whole new set of behavioral problems for years and kept me stuck in a vicious loop, where I continually met more disappointing circumstances.
I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was ultimately sabotaging my self-image.
I believed I wasn’t good enough and a failure so my circumstances or the facts of my life reflected this truth about my potential as a person.
Regardless of what I did, I would find some way to confirm my subconscious beliefs about myself, creating a self-fulling prophecy…
Manifesting or creating circumstances that were aligned with my self-image.
I would find some way to fail.
So no matter what I tried to do my circumstances were a reminder that I wasn’t’ confident, good enough, or worthy of achieving what I wanted to experience in my life…
So to cope with this emotionally, to feel more whole, and confident I drank more.
Eventually drinking became my identity…
Not an addiction.
Not a disease.
A paradigm can be likened to a program or a multitude of habits that are lodged in your subconscious mind.
A mental program that has almost exclusive control over your habitual behavior.
When you think about it, virtually all of your behavior is habitual. When you get up in the morning and go to bed at night, you follow a routine.
And the way you eat, exercise, work, relax and the time you wake up and go to sleep are all habits.
A paradigm has enormous influence over several aspects of your life.
It controls your…
√ Use of time
√ Ability to earn money
The paradigm puts a box around every one of those areas, and no matter how hard you try, you can’t knock down the walls until you change the mental program.
When you drink habitually it eventually becomes a deeply learned behavior, a skill, a way to deal with life, and you become identified with this state of consciousness.
You end up creating a model of reality that is aligned with the paradigm and your subconscious beliefs about yourself.
In other words, your self-image colors your perception of reality.
You will unknowingly and subconsciously look for clues and create circumstances that are aligned with and support the way you see yourself.
Over time the effects of alcohol replace your natural coping mechanisms, so you turn more and more to it for support and feel less and less able to cope without it.
Like a safety blanket..
As you fall deeper and deeper into the paradigm, it becomes harder and harder to see a way out.
Perhaps calling yourself an addict or alcoholic.
The Paradigm has exclusive control over your behavior hijacking your reality…
Most people who have fallen into addiction will tend to have a poor self-image.
They may try to hide this but such people tend to see themselves as:
* Weak because they are unable to control their intake of alcohol and drugs.
* A rebel because they refuse to fit into the system.
* A victim to life because they’re out of control and unable to do anything about it.
* A bad person who is living the type of life they deserve.
* A loser who moves from one disaster to another.
* A deceitful person who has to hide who they truly are.
* Unlovable because they hurt everyone who gets close to them.
* Untrustworthy and unreliable because they are always making promises that they do not keep.
* A failure because they have not been able to achieve any of their dreams.
The Paradigm has control over their behavior and their results and reinforces a negative self-image.
They may even think that “addiction” is to blame for their problems…
So the more that they attempt to change something and they fail it creates a vicious loop and they see their circumstances as nothing more than facts that they can’t change….
Completely blind to the fact that their results in life are always consistent with their self-image, the deeper mental programming, and the paradigm that is driving all of their behavior and creating their results.
They go deeper and deeper into addiction using it as a coping mechanism.
Their circumstances are in control of them.
They are not in control of their circumstances at all.
At first, we seem to have no power to separate ourselves from the paradigm and undesirable inner states – simply because we’ve always taken every mood, every reaction, as natural and have become identified with them.
When we have no idea that our reactions are only states of consciousness from which it’s possible to separate ourselves, we go round and round in the same circle of problems – not seeing them as inner states, but as outer situations.
Always know, your world and all of your circumstances are always consistent with your self-image.
The problem is the majority of people are trying to change their circumstances before they change the root cause of their circumstances.
The paradigm, your own imaginal activity, your inner conversations, your feelings, beliefs, attitude, your concept of yourself, this is and always will be the cause.
You must become aware of what you are habitually thinking and feeling.
When you indulge in negative inner talking, blaming your circumstances, and allow feelings of anger, resentment, jealousy, fear, hatred, and such, you are working against yourself; you are robbing yourself of all you desire.
You are binding yourself to these states and the very things you wish to escape from you are keeping alive in your imagination.
Creating the very circumstances you are trying so desperately to avoid.
Your world and the conditions you find yourself in are the direct result of your imaginal activity and your inner expectations.
Who you are conscious of being, your concept of yourself creates your reality.
Addiction or alcoholism is just a state of consciousness that you can free yourself from as with any state..
Let the weak say, “I am strong”
Let the poor say, “I am rich”
Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Maxwell Maltz – was an American cosmetic surgeon and author.
By combining his daily work experiences as a surgeon with profound studies of human psychology, Maltz concluded that our self-image is the cornerstone of our mental state and therefore of all the successes and failures that happen in our lives as a result.
Through understanding your self-image and by learning to modify it and manage it to suit your purposes, you gain incredible confidence and power.
If you’re wondering what kind of self-image you have it’s not difficult to figure it out…
All that’s required is for you to take a look at the various aspects of your life.
Take a look at the results you’re getting.
Possibly your relationships, your income, and the position you hold at work or the type of business you’re operating.
Take a look at your own personal appearance.
Everything you have right now is an external expression of your inner self-image.
Changing your circumstances means re-engineering your self-image.
So why do people live this way?
We live this way because we don’t know any different.
How can you escape from a prison you don’t even know you’re in?
If you don’t change your self-image, you’ll experience what I call the ‘snap-back effect’ where you try something new and are snapped back like a rubber band into your old habits, the paradigm repeatedly.
You can never outperform your own self-image.
You’ll continue to stop and start drinking..
You’ll continue to sabotage your relationships…
And you’ll continue to fall short of meeting your goals.
Debt, being broke, struggling in bad relationships, being unhappy with your body, suffering from poor health – none of these will improve until you change your self-image.
Sooner than later you’ll be “snapped-back,” like a rubber band.
This is why trying to achieve something difficult with teeth gritted is a losing battle.
Willpower is not the answer. Self-image management is.
However, as soon as we alter this inner image, everything outside begins to change.
So what keeps people stuck?
Why can’t they create the lasting change they desire and improve their lives?
Let’s analyze the situation and discover their common mistakes.
1. These people are trying desperately
to change their END RESULT.
2. The RESULTS in their lives will be determined
by their BEHAVIOR.
3. And their BEHAVIORS are continually being motivated
by their self-image.
They have not yet come to understand that their RESULTS are a direct reflection of their self-image.
In other words, they’re not dealing with the root of the problem, and instead, they’re looking at simply trying to fix the symptoms of the problem instead and that will just never work.
What’s going on outside is a reflection of what’s going on inside.
To change their results they MUST break free from the paradigm and mental programming.
You and I have been hypnotized and conditioned into believing that change happens outside of us.
And this is why it’s not your fault…