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Identifying Disempowering Beliefs: An Exercise

By on April 7, 2018 in Spiritual Awakening
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Identifying Disempowering Beliefs

by Olivia Weil,
Contributing Writer,

“Our beliefs have the power to change the flow of events in the Universe–literally to interrupt and redirect time, matter, and space, and the events that occur within them.”
Gregg Braden

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Sit quietly in a comfortable place, perhaps with a journal by your side. Begin breathing in and out, coming to the present moment–the Eternal Now–the only moment we really ever have. Taking deep, nourishing inhalations on the in breath, and long, audible exhalations on the out breath.

Our beliefs make up the fabric of this space-time reality. Let’s assume for a moment that everything we perceive in this third dimensional reality is holographic. Let’s further assume that the only thing essentially creating structure for us, is our beliefs–layers upon layers upon layers of them. And from all directions and four corners of the world, whether that be personal self-imposed beliefs, or ones from society, family, friends, the news, etc.

Our beliefs weave the tapestry of the landscape we perceive as our physical realities, and so identifying contradictory beliefs, disempowering beliefs, or beliefs which are no longer serving us, are powerful exercises in self-healing.

There are six main universal/archetypal beliefs or core wounds we all came here to explore. The invitation is to identify three main disempowering beliefs that resonate with you most, and begin to explore them in your personal Journey work.

Those six universal or archetypcal fears/wounds common to all humans that are often the source of many of our sabotaging beliefs are the following:

Unworthiness. I am not lovable. I do not deserve. I am not good enough.

Abuse. I am hurt physically or mentally, typically over time.

Abandonment. No matter what I do or who I am, I will eventually be left alone.

Trust. The world is an unsafe place. I am always waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Betrayal. Being the victim of an intentional or unconscious act of disloyalty.

Separation. Being abandoned by God or separate from Source energy. Being “kicked out of the garden.” Always an outsider.

Continuing with the breath, take a few more nourishing inhalations and audible exhalations on the out breath.

And, so, what are your three main disempowering beliefs or themes you came here to explore?

Most likely, all six resonate with you on some level. After all, these are the six main universal, archetypal themes we all share in some respect.

In other words, imagine for a moment your conscious mind as the tip of the iceberg, and your unconscious mind as the bottom of the iceberg–that huge, substantial part of the iceberg that is mostly all underneath the water, hidden and not able to be readily seen. The bottom part of the iceberg is the unconscious mind, and that’s really where all the juice is– the healing juice, that is. It’s that bottom of the iceberg–the unconscious mind–that’s the one running the show most of the time, until we have cultivated enough awareness–and mastered awareness of awareness–and brought these patterns or systems of beliefs to the surface to process and heal.

In essence, patterns are a sequence of unconscious behaviours that often end in an undesirable outcome. When we begin to recognize our individual patterns of behavior earlier, we have a better chance of changing direction and altering the momentum tunnel’s of our lives. Examples of patterns of behaviour are depression, anxiety, anger, reaction to stress, etc. None of these are events, but a sequence of external stimulation and our conditioned reaction.

Our conditioning. Our patterns.

And so patterns happen naturally in groups–such as families, for instance–which often operate by unconscious patterns that we can easily entrain into if we are not conscious (think: when we are younger, our minds are like computers downloading information from the environment and people around us, and this is where we soak up our patterns and learn conditioned responses of how to react in various given situations). Stated another way, family systems are like theater, everyone has their role and when we begin to change, the pattern tries to correct us back into the old pattern. This is all unconscious.

To that end, here is an exercise in identifying general patterns, family patterns, and personal patterns, that may help you further identify your main disempowering beliefs. With your Journal and pen next to you, I invite you to jot down this exercise and check back in these articles for continued guidance relating to the same.


Write out your life story, highlighting the dramas. Reflect on the highest highs and the lowest lows. Begin to consider what the running patterns in your life are, keeping the six main universal/archetypal disempowering beliefs in mind as you write (unworthiness, abuse, abandonment, trust, betrayal, separation).

What were some of your major, biggest dramas in life? Relationships? Career? What were some of your biggest failures? More likely than not, in any given area, the same pattern is repeating itself over and over again. This is unconscious programming at work, and the first step in reprogramming and making pivotal changes in your lives, is to shed light on these patterns. This work is not always pretty, but it is always, always beautiful. Keep that in mind.

And then, further consider the family patterns in your life. Continuing to review your life story, find the primary family patterns that are unconsciously influencing you. Who are the players? What are the recurring dramas? Much like you would explain a movie or theatre production to a friend after going to see a movie or play, what has played and/or continues to play on the drama-filled stage in your life? How will you hold your ground while the pattern reorganizes itself into the new dynamic that will be necessary for you to life fully?

This is powerful personal work, and we are on this Journey together. I share this personal Journey work with you because I have been there. I have been through years and years of the same patterns repeating themselves, and from my repeated mistakes, failures, dramas, pains, sufferings, and the like, I have kept and cultivated exercises that work for me, and discarded the ones that haven’t. Shedding light on these patterns is one of the quickest ways to personal freedom. At the end of the day, the common denominator in the dramas of your life, is you. Just like at the end of the day, the common denominator in the dramas of my life, was me. And so we have to get really real with our selves–and examine things in an honest way for ourselves–when committing to any kind of personal Journey work like the exercises shared today. And so that would be my main advice overall–get really real with yourself. Delve deep, get real with yourself, and begin to walk the Journey of healing and remembering. This is the path to personal power and personal freedom.

I believe in you.

About the author: Olivia Weil plays the roles of a NY lawyer turned shamanic energy medicine practitioner, soul alchemy coach, plant-based nutritionist, and writer. She holds post-graduate certification from Cornell University in plant-based nutrition and was trained traditionally by the Four Winds Society and shamans of the old–the indigenous medicine peoples of the high Andes. She has an international healing practice which combines ancient wisdom with modern science. To connect with her, she can be reached at

Image: Pixabay

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