Dealing with limiting beliefs

Link to the Episode

Anshu Bahanda: This is Anshu Bahanda on Wellness Curated. Thanks for joining me on this podcast. My mission is to empower you with health and wellness so that you can then go and empower others. 

I’m very pleased to welcome back my wonderful guest, Bushra Khan today. She is a holistic psychotherapy counselor. She uses RTT- Rapid Transformational Therapy which combines NLP, hypnotherapy, psychotherapy and cognitive behavior therapy, which some of you know as CBT. She also uses theta healing, access bars and psychic. So, BushraI’m going to jump straight in. What is wellness to you?

Bushra Khan: Wellness to me is to have a peaceful mind, clarity of mind. I feel that the clearer your mind is, the more peaceful your mind is. You’ll feel better, you’ll have a better quality of life.

AB: Okay, wonderful. So, explain to me now: what is a limiting belief? I’ll tell you why I’m asking you this. Because not everyone can do everything, right? So, if I was to look at a bird in the sky and say, I want to fly like that bird, I can’t do that. So, explain to me what you mean when you say we all have limiting beliefs.

BK: Okay, so your beliefs are the foundation of your personality. So, they define you as worthy, unworthy, powerful, or powerless. As you just said that we can’t do everything, that’s fine. So, our beliefs are also like, let’s say, oh, don’t put your hand in the fire, you’ll burn your hand. So those beliefs are not limiting us. So, looking at the bird, knowing that you can’t fly, okay, fine, these are my boundaries. But then we have beliefs like that I’m unworthy, I can’t achieve my goals, I can’t have enough money, I can’t have good relationships. It affects your job performance, it affects your self-esteem, physical health, and even your religious or spiritual outlook. Everything comes from your beliefs. So, some beliefs, I call them, are bullshit beliefs. Some are serving us. So, let’s say the bullshit belief would be, oh, others can achieve, I can’t achieve X-Y-Z. That’s a bullshit belief because you have acquired it somewhere in your life and you’re operating from there and you’re creating the reality from that.

AB: Okay, and when and how are these limiting beliefs formed?

BK: Okay, these limiting beliefs are normally formed in your childhood from the age of zero to seven, when your brain is in the delta wave, which is the slowest brainwave. As kids, we’re in a state of hypnosis. So, everything that’s happening, we are not even questioning, we are recording. So, that’s why if you learn two, or three languages, you can learn them very quickly because your mind is in that state of hypnosis. It’s recording everything. It’s very easy to just buy the beliefs. Then secondly, it is from emotional impact. So, let’s say you sit in the car, you have a bad accident and you say, you know what, I’m never going to drive the car. That’s when the new neuro path is made in your brain and you form this belief that cars are dangerous, I’m not going to sit in the car. So, it’s either in the childhood or a big emotional impact. That’s where your beliefs are formed. And your beliefs are formed mostly in your upbringing. So, how do we learn who we are? So, if I ask you Anshu, how do you know what you look like? You will say when I wake up, I look at myself in the mirror. So, we learn about what we look like from the reflection. That’s how we learn in our childhood— who we are. So, if somebody says to us, oh, you can’t do this or this is not possible, or you see your parents suffering from money or anything around it, you will form a belief that this is the truth.

AB: So, this is a really interesting point you’ve made. You’ve said a lot of our beliefs are formed between zero and seven when our brain is in a delta wave or if it has a big emotional impact when something happens.

BK: Yes.

AB: So where does this belief sit? How does it work? How do we change it?

BK: Okay, so our beliefs are everything that sits in our subconscious mind, which is 95% of our brain. 5% of our brain is the conscious mind. So, our beliefs, our habits, our values, they all sit in our subconscious mind. So, that is our autopilot brain. Let’s say if I say, oh, I want to earn a million a year. So, that’s my hopes and dreams, which is in 5% of my conscious mind. So, I say my hopes and dreams and then I go on with my day and then the subconscious mind will cancel that belief. So, it will say, well actually it’s not even possible for you. You can’t do this. Remember the last time you tried to achieve something; how difficult it was? So, the mind will not let you do that. You cannot have growth beyond your limiting beliefs. It will keep you there. So, you will survive, but you won’t thrive. And that is if you feel that you’re in a pattern or you keep getting stuck because you are in that survival mode, in that place where it’s comfortable, you won’t take the risk because you don’t believe in it. You don’t believe you can have it. We all see that people get really motivated. They read a book, they watch a movie, they hear somebody and say yes, I’m going to do this and then later on they say enough, forget it, I’m not going to do this. Because that is your limiting belief just sitting in your subconscious mind which will not let you do it till you abandon the idea.

AB: Okay, so now we come to the crux of what we’re getting to today. How do you deal with this belief? How do you get rid of it? How do you change it? If it’s in our subconscious mind, how do we access it?

BK: Okay, so now science says you can change it in a state of hypnosis. You can go into your subconscious mind, or using your full brain practice, you can go into your subconscious mind and change the belief very quickly. So, one of the tools I use is called psyche. In that we actually in one session can go and change your limiting belief and then we put the actions on how to put things in place. Using the full brain state is the quickest way. So, by the full brain state, what I mean is your conscious and your subconscious when they come together. So, your subconscious with your wisdom mind— which is 5%, comes together. And when they’re together, that is when you can quickly install a new belief.

AB: And give me some practical examples on when, you know, it’s to talk about dealing. Or when have you helped people deal with a belief, get rid of it, or change it to something that people will understand?

BK: So, I’ll give you an example. I had a client who said that she didn’t want to get married. But when we did the investigation in the session, we found out that she had this belief that marriage is actually dangerous because her parents were not in a happy marriage, and because they were not in a happy marriage, she as a child suffered. So, she thought okay, fine, if I get married and I have kids, they will suffer and marriages are not good for you because the mother must be saying things like that oh, it’s taking my freedom away, it’s taking my peace away. So, the child actually wanted to get married, the girl, but the belief was that it’s dangerous. So, we changed that belief into— marriage is available to me and it’s safe to get married. So, whatever the beliefs were, we changed the beliefs around it. And then I gave her actions to create that reality. So, when she thought of: that I want to get married, her subconscious mind did not cancel her dreams. So, she was more open, more confident, she took more risks and she tried new things. So, now if she’s going to get married, that’s not in my hand or in her hand, she was open to it. And actually, within a year she got married because she met somebody and she was so confident and open and her self-esteem was high. So, I’ll give you my example. I had this huge money block around— I can’t make money, men can. A lot of women, we have this block. Men can make money. Men can provide, but women can’t, especially from where we come from. I had all the ability, but it was just not happening. So, when I worked on this belief, literally Anshu, within weeks, literally, the way I was thinking about it, my thinking changed. It was not that I was forcing myself. It was like, of course, it’s possible. Of course, I can do this. Of course, I’m working so hard, I can ask for money. Otherwise, it was, oh, no, it’s shameful to ask for money. And it was just really strange. And within weeks, the way I was looking at the whole situation changed. So, they say that when you’re looking at something, it’s the way you’re looking at it. That’s what changes it. That’s what the limiting belief is. You’re looking at the situation with your limits, but when that limit is removed, you’re just open to so many opportunities.

AB: That’s a magnificent story. Your story. One of the issues that people asked about is, I can’t lose my last five kilos, or I can’t lose ten kilos, it’s stuck. So, I guess those are the sort of limiting beliefs that affect people every day. Relationships, money, health.

BK: Absolutely. So, with weight, I would say that when we focus on something…so when I say I can’t lose weight, I’m focusing on lack, I’m focusing on can’t. And then that ‘can’t’ will keep on showing up. So, if you say, you know what, okay, the challenge is I can’t shift five kilos. Okay, so what is the desired experience I would like to have? I would like to be five kilos lighter. Okay, so what’s the limiting belief around it that I can’t lose it? We will muscle test that belief. That is what’s sitting in your subconscious. And if that’s sitting in your subconscious, first we will change the belief. Then you will give an action plan. That’s the thing that you should do to shift that five kilos. But what will happen, Anshu, because we move the limiting belief, the resistance will go. The resistance that’s holding you back from shifting that five kilos, that will go, and it will become easier. You won’t look at it as a challenge. You will look at it as, if I’m going to the gym, if I’m eating properly, then it will happen. So, let’s say I remove the limiting belief, but your action doesn’t change. Let’s say you’re still eating the cake and you’re still not working out. So, what happens is you will not shift that weight. But what happens is, after we remove the limiting belief, you will see it’s easier to go to the gym. You will find it easier to eat healthy. The resistance will go.

AB: Tell me something, I mean, I know you’ve talked about… you’re talking about psyche, which is a tool you use. You have a bunch of other tools, as well?

BK: Yes.

AB: What happens when someone cannot afford to go to someone like you? If they can’t afford a psychotherapist?

BK: Okay, so I would suggest that you seriously sit down and see what area you are challenged in. Write it down. Not just think about it, write it down so it becomes reality. So, write it down. Where are you challenged? Then write what is the desired experience that you would like to have? And then just see… you will see it quite straight away, where is the limiting belief sitting? What is the belief I need to have to achieve that? So, let’s say the belief would be I can shift five kilos with ease, joy, and glory. Let’s say that. So, then just say that. Okay, fine. So basically, I need to believe in it. What is limiting me? Do I really believe it? Ask yourself a few questions. Do I really believe I can shift this weight? How hard do I think it is? So, if you will start doing this inquiry, you will see what is stopping you and then you would do different things. But if you’re doing it yourself, start saying affirmations. I’m so happy and grateful that I’m at my desired weight. I’m five kilos lighter. And don’t say lose because what the mind does when you lose something, it keeps looking for it. So, just say I’m so happy and grateful that I’m five kilos lighter and it feels awesome. Just make an affirmation and then just ask the universe. I always say the question is empowering. Answer disempowers. So, ask what do I need to do to shift this five kilos? You will see things happening. So, be honest with yourself. Write what’s challenging, what would you like to do, and see what actions you need to take with ease.

AB : And for the affirmations, is there a time frame when you feel like it will go into the subconscious brain?

BK: Okay, so when we wake up first thing in the morning, we are highly suggestible. We are in this state of hypnosis because we are not completely awake. So, we are in that theta wave. So, that is the time you need to say your affirmations. Before you even open your eyes, start saying your affirmations. I will quickly tell you a story:  when I was struggling with this money and I was starting a completely new career many moons ago, I started saying my affirmations in the morning and I didn’t know, I actually didn’t even believe in it in the beginning that it would happen. And I used to say it literally like a parrot all the time, all the time. And the energy changed, the vibration changed and I literally saw things happening and opening up, and then I started saying it with more belief. So, just say it. Just say it as many times as you can say it, but the first thing in the morning, last thing at night, do it. And if you have something that’s really sitting there and you think that there’s a pattern there, make an appointment, come and see me. We can remove that block in one session.

AB: And do you think something like 21 days is a good number for people to start seeing some sort of result?

BK: Yes, Anshu it takes 21 days to create, construct and deconstruct a thought. It takes 63 days to change the behavior. So, if you’re changing a thought, take 21 days, take 21 days to work on it and you will see the result. And if you’re trying to change a behavior, then do it a little bit longer.

AB: And I just thought of something. So, if affirmations are so useful and children are highly, highly suggestible, you said from zero to seven?

BK: Yes.

AB: But they’re not always exactly in your control. They go to school; they’re exposed to so many people. What is the best way of bringing up a child so that they grow up with as few limiting beliefs as possible? Can you suggest an affirmation that we can maybe say to children?

BK: Children are very easy to work with. They are my favorite because they understand things so quickly. So, if you just maybe tell a child to say I’m happy and grateful, that is something that will keep them in that state. So, just tell a child that: You know what? When you wake up in the morning, say this ten times, I’m so happy and grateful. Kids are very emotional because their emotional brain is very active. So, if you tell them anything with love, they will understand because they feel it. So, if you say to them, you know what? I’m so happy and grateful, and tell them a little story, why happy and grateful? They will always remember it and they will keep on saying it.

AB: Now Bushra I have a question, especially people who’ve had a very troubled childhood. How much can you change and remove?

BK: So again, it’s sitting in the subconscious. So, if you start removing the story from what happened because now the story is gone, the feeling is there. So, that’s why I love doing subconscious work, because that’s holding on to all your childhood problems. So, if you start working on it, that— okay, fine, it’s just a feeling left in my body. What happened is actually gone. It’s not tangible, it’s not even there. So, what you’re tripping on is behind you. So, you understand what’s the feeling that is left behind. The feeling is that I’m worthless. I was rejected, I was abandoned. So, work on that. Is that really true? Who is rejecting me right now? I’m rejecting myself. Okay, what happened? A lot of people suffer because they are not accepting it. So, when you’re not accepting what happened, you’re denying it and you’re playing and there’s a secondary gain in it. Or you are being a victim here. Really be honest with yourself and see why am I still holding on to this, and obviously, your subconscious is holding. So, to heal from that, is to separate the story from the feeling and work on the feeling.

AB: Child abuse, how have you dealt with that?

BK: I will be honest here. I myself have been through that. And now when I think about it, it’s just a story. I’m not emotionally involved in it, so I dealt with it. And I have a lot of my clients who go through the same thing, especially girls. And so, we separate the story from the emotion. And as I said, I work on the emotion of it, and then I do a lot of EMDR on it to help that it’s in a dream state. And then I work on my psyche, and I give them another belief. And believe me, as little as two, three sessions, you will still know what happened, but you won’t be emotionally involved in it. And then right at the end, when the client is ready, we do a forgiveness exercise.

AB: And the next question is, how do you align with your thoughts? What is the power behind ease, joy and glory?

BK: Okay, so what’s happening outside is reality. What’s happening in your mind is not reality. It’s just your thoughts. So, you can decide. You have a 50% chance that you can decide to pick a positive thought and 50% negative thought. Let’s say the negative thought comes and it’s coming from the past. It has nothing to do with right now. So, let’s say somebody comes and says something rude to you and you get really triggered. You have to ask yourself, why am I getting so triggered? What does this remind me of? It will remind you of something to do with your childhood, or something somewhere happened. And you say, okay, fine, but this is not happening right now. If I didn’t have that experience, how would I react? And, okay, I’ve dealt with it. Now off I go. So, you have again, 17 seconds to change your thought. And let’s say the thought comes. You’re not worthy. Ask yourself, is it true? Ask your thought, is it true? Normally you will get the answer, no, it’s not true. And so, okay, fine. So, what do I need to do right now? I’m worthy of love. I’m worthy of good people around me. So, you straight away go into that, start saying that, and if you catch it very quickly, you won’t go spiral down. I use this tool with my clients. I take them into a very negative thought and ask them, how does it feel? And then straight away, in 10 seconds, I take them to a very positive thought, and they say, I’m feeling relaxed. I’m feeling better. So, I said, all I’ve done is just change this thought. So, you can do that yourself. Go from negative thought to positive. Just try it, force yourself, and you will see. Your whole physiology will change. And when you’re doing this, make sure that your shoulders are back, your chest is out, your face is up, your chin is up. And then you say I’m so worthy of love. I love myself. I’m enough. Just a few things and you will see. Your whole physiology will change, your thoughts will change, and you will feel better.

AB: Wonderful. Bushra, do you have any advice for the people who are listening in?

BK: I would say that believe in yourself. Trust yourself. Trust your gut. It is really super conscious. Believe that what you want, you can have it. I promise you. Whatever you want, you can have it. You just have a limiting belief around it. So, work on it and push yourself. Take risks. You will get it. If you don’t push yourself, then you will just survive. So, there is always: from surviving to thriving. I always say there’s only one thing stopping you. That’s the fear.

AB: That was such a lovely chat, Bushra. I hope we can help lots of people. Even if we manage to help one person. It would be incredible. 

Thanks for joining us. Hope you enjoyed the Wellness Curated podcast. Please subscribe and tell your friends and family about it. And here’s to you leading your best life.