It is quite common for most of us to have a set of commonly held core beliefs about ourselves, about the future and about people in our lives. These core beliefs are often so deeply embedded in our, where else, “cores,” to the point that we are not consciously aware of them. In this article I am going to point out 7 common self defeating core beliefs and your job is to pause with each and wonder to yourself if you hold such core beliefs and if so, ask yourself “what is it worth to me to change that core belief?”
- Achievement/Perfectionism – Believing that you must never fail or make a mistake. That people will not love and accept you if you have flaws or show vulnerability. That your worth as a human being is based on your achievements, income, looks, talent, or some other type of status.
- Love – You believe that you must receive everyone’s approval in order to be worthwhile. That you will not taste happiness unless you have someone in your life who romantically loves you. And, that if you receive criticism or rejection it proves that there is something inherently wrong with you.
- Submissiveness – You believe that you should do your best to please others and you are willing to sacrifice anything for it. You are afraid of conflict and think people who care for one another should never be at odds with one another and should certainly not have arguments. And you believe all the problems in your relationships are somehow your fault.
- Demandingness – When in conflict, you put the blame on others. You feel entitled that others should always treat you in the way you expect. And you believe you are right and everyone else is wrong.
- Depression – You believe your problems could never be solved and that you will never feel truly happy or fulfilled. And you believe that you are basically worthless, defective or inferior compared to others.
- Anxiety – You believe that you should always feel happy and confident and in control. That anger is dangerous and should be avoided at all cost, and that feeling intense emotions such as depressed, angry or jealous should be avoided. You believe people are powerful, demanding and manipulative. And, you are under the spotlight; everyone is looking at how you carry yourself and is ready to criticize you. And lastly, you engage in magical thinking: “If I worry enough, everything will turn out okay.”
The above commonly held self-defeating beliefs are strongly associated with most of human suffering. Learning to recognize them can be tremendously helpful.
I am Dr. Dashtban, licensed clinical psychologist with practices in Santa Cruz, Mt View and Fremont California. Call me at 831-621-1150 or post on my facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/MedicalPsychologyServices