Monday, October 17, 2016

Foundational Beliefs 161017

I had a running conversation over a few weeks with a very influential mentor in my life.  We discussed the five foundational beliefs that we hold in life.  How we approach these beliefs forms the foundation upon which we base our thoughts and eventually actions. 

Security / Safety: So if you believe you are generally safe, you don't think about making yourself safer; you focus on other things.  On the other hand, if you don't feel safe, you can take becoming safer to a dramatic extreme.  Becoming safe can become an invasive, emotional endeavor that completely overwhelms your thoughts. 

Control / Power: Do you have control over ... what you feel you should have control over?  Do you have the power to be productive and make changes where you feel they should be made?  If you answered yes to the above questions you are probably comfortable in this area of your life. If not, gaining control over what you think you should have control over can become an obsession.

Trust: Trusting yourself and others is another important foundation in your life.  If you believe you can trust yourself, you exude confidence.  It is easier to act without double-checking yourself.  If you trust others, you are not always looking over your shoulder, expecting someone to be plotting or acting against you.  It is much easier to befriend people if you generally trust them.

Intimacy: Speaking of befriending people, how close do you let people get when it comes to getting to know you?  Do you let them in on who you really are or keep them at a superfluous conversation distance?  It is absolutely healthy to share who you are with people you trust.  It is healthy for them to share with you as well.  Loving and being loved are critical to living a full life; and, being intimate is part of that love.

Esteem: It is also healthy to esteem others and yourself.  Lifting up people you respect honors them; you should hold yourself in a high esteem as well.  You are important as a person.  You are valuable and should be honored and esteemed. 

Each of these beliefs are intertwined.  It is hard to be intimate if you don't trust.  It is hard to feel secure if you don't feel you have a sense of control over at least some of what is going on in your life. 

Over time, after events, through our experiences, our personal beliefs about these five areas can change....  So my 16-year-old daughter just got her drivers license.  I used to feel safe in the passenger's seat of a car... my belief of my own safety in that seat has changed! 

Seriously though, she is a great driver, but I never look at the car the same since she and her two older brothers started driving. 

When I first arrived at 2nd Intel Bn in April of 2004, I was in a unit of Marines.  We were a unit going to Iraq.  After 7 months in Anbar Province, supporting numerous combat operations and actions under fire, that unit came back EXTREMELY intimate.  We were brothers in arms with trust forged in the fire of combat.  We trusted each other far more after the deployment than before.  That said, we probably trusted others far less after the deployment. 

Take inventory yourself on where you are with these five beliefs.  Then challenge why you hold that stance on your foundational belief. 

If your reason for not trusting cars now is because you know my teenaged driver may be behind the wheel... remember she is only one of the hundreds of millions of drivers out there; and, most of them have far more experience than she does.  Challenge that belief; and, maybe consider changing the conversation you have with yourself about cars. 

Once you figure out where you stand on those five foundational beliefs, challenge each one and make healthy changes.  Adjust your beliefs and your thoughts and actions will change automatically.

Semper Fi,

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