UNLEARNING: The Key to Moving Forward
When we are born, we are perfect. Funny, because most of us spend our entire lifetime chasing perfection, yet we’re given this elusive gift right at the start of our lives.
It’s when we start to learn things that we step away from the perfect beings that we are. Depending on our environment, we may be taught to be a lover or a hater. Maybe we’re taught to accept everyone as equal to us or maybe it’s the opposite... You’re taught to think of yourself as better or less than others. Then there’s the whole money mentality... You can be taught that you have to work hard to earn money or you’re taught that prosperity is your birth right. You’re taught that you’re right and someone else is wrong or vice versa.
It’s a freaking mess. We didn’t sign up for the things we were taught!! We didn’t give permission for our parents to pass along their junk. But here’s the thing, neither did THEY. They didn’t say “Hey mom & dad, I give you permission to teach me some warped ass ways of thinking. Gimme alllllll your thoughts on success and what it means to YOU. Lay it on me!”
Oh, and your grandparents didn’t sign up for it either, so let grandma and grandpa off the hook before you even put them on it.
While I do actually believe we sign up for the life we are given way before we’re even thought of in our parents minds’, that’s a completely different topic for a different day. But I will say, on a human level, we didn’t sign up for jack shit.
So we little humans grow up to be big humans and find that everything we have been taught seems to be the way of life. So we accept these lessons and we pass them on to our offspring.
Until some little freak breaks the cycle.
I’d like to say I’m my family’s freak. I’m sure my in-laws 100% believe husband married a freak!
At some point, I was introduced to a new way of thinking and it hit me: I am in control of my thoughts, my beliefs, and my reality from THIS point forward.
So I set out on quest to learn new ways of thinking that would get me to the place in life I wanted to be. And it worked. For a while.
Until I realized that even though I had learned all these new thoughts, the old ones were still taking up a good chunk of my mental chatter.
What freaking gives, man?! (Figure of speech, lets not get all hot and bothered my use of the word “man”).
It wasn’t until I had a serious breakdown that I found what I was doing “wrong”. Now, no one asks for a breakdown. People don’t wake up and think “Ya know, today is a good day for breakdown... Bring it on!”
No, it’s usually brought on by some pent up emotions that are in need of a serious boot out the door, so up to the surface they come.
But through my breakdown, when I literally cursed all of the new thoughts I was teaching myself to believe, I realized something BIG: It’s not necessarily about learning the new thoughts and beliefs. It’s about UNLEARNING the old ones.
By UNlearning old beliefs, we put them to bed. We say goodbye to their place in our lives so that we can go on to actually learn and foster the new beliefs. Not just learn of them and let them battle it out with the old ones. That keeps us stuck and eventually, frustrated. Very, very frustrated.
So how do we unlearn something?
First, we have to be open to change. Without being even slightly open to this journey, we’ll never move in the direction we want to go. Maybe you will, but it will be a long and arduous journey.
Second, we have to recognize that the power lies within us to make the changes necessary. No outside force, be it an object or a person we love, can make the changes for us. They can TEACH us, but it’s up to us to LEARN. If we want to learn the new, we have to unlearn the old. And that’s up to US.
*Note: Some will say that a higher power is an outside force. I think, or at least in my interpretations of any texts, that a higher power exists WITHIN all of us. We are the embodiment of the higher power we believe in.*
And now, the most important step: We have to wipe the slate clean. We have to be willing to see our minds as brand new and ready to be molded. We’re like little kids at every stage of our lives so the quicker we accept that and roll with it, the easier it is to not give a shit about what anyone thinks of our “changes”(Also another topic for another day).
This can be easy for some, but for others, it can be just as difficult as winning the Olympics. Caution: Do NOT automatically assume it’s going to be difficult for you. It could take you an hour to switch over your mentality in one area, or it could take a year. It all depends on your willingness and openness to change.
If you are someone who can switch up your mentality no problem, then go on with yo bad self! OWN IT. Don’t shrink back because you see that it can be harder for others. You’re in your lane, they’re in theirs. Stay in your lane and cruise, baby, cruise.
If you’re someone who has a bit more trouble making mental changes, that’s okay! It’s not impossible, no matter how it may seem at the moment. There are tools to help you get there. But, like I’ve said countless times already, you have to be willing and open (figure out the moral of the story yet? LOL)
I feel like you know what I’m going to say, and maybe it seems cliché or obvious, but I’m going to say it anyway. Maybe then it will sink in. One of the best tools you have up your sleeve is MEDITATION. It has taken me a while to really fall in love with meditation, so I feel like I’m very qualified to say that IT HELPS. You don’t have to go into it with insane expectations to find answers or profound thoughts. Just setting a timer for 5 minutes a day and sitting in silence helps you grow the meditation muscle so that eventually, you CAN be open to receiving guidance in your sessions. If you prefer to follow guided meditations, you’re in luck! We live in this wonderful era where YouTube exists, so just type in whatever you’re looking for (ex: 20 minute guided meditation) and boom, you’re on your way! Oprah and Deepak Chopra have great mediations for free every so often, so head over to https://chopracentermeditation.com/to stay up-to-date on their next one! They also have mediations for purchase.
Journaling- Dear Diary style, if you will. Journaling is much more therapeutic than people realize. I think a lot of people have moved away from this because of technology, but if you prefer to type instead of whip out your feather and ink, then by all means, start a document on your computer or open the notes on your phone and type away how you’re feeling. GET THEM FEELINGS OUT. It’s better to let them out if you ever want to experience new ones. Katie Dalebout has a great book of journal prompts called Let It Out if you’re looking for some guidance on what to write. You can also keep it simple and just free write. I like to do a combination of free writes, responding to prompts, and writing out prayers. I find I get the most bang for my buck when I write what I want to say, so it really helps me process things better. It could be the key to helping you process your old beliefs before you unlearn them.
Get Out In Nature- Have you ever noticed how time and worries seem to slip away when you’re outside doing something fun? Maybe it’s a pick-up game of soccer in the park with your friends or maybe it’s just a walk down your favorite trail, but you start to notice you feel less tense. Fresh air can do that to you. You start to feel more grounded and your head feels a bit more clear. It gets easier to work with your mind when it’s not fighting you every step of the way.
These are only a few ways to get your mind to slow it’s roll so if you know of something that helps you do that, by all means, do it! Just make sure it’s 1. Healthy and 2. Not making you run away from your thoughts, but rather clear them out.
Once you’ve tapped into those old beliefs and recognized how they’ve often sabotaged part of your dreams, you can kiss them goodbye and move on to TRULY learning the new beliefs.
But first, let them go. If you’re not big on theatrics, simply state the belief you’re letting go and say “I let you go.” If you’re slightly dramatic or ceremonious like I am, find a way to officially cut ties with the beliefs you unlearned. Maybe you write them down and then burn them. Maybe you rip them up. Maybe you set up a whole ritual... whatever it is, it should be definitive. If thoughts creep back in at some point, they’re just telling you that you didn’t fully unlearn them and it’s time to really let them go. Don’t let yourself spiral back into the old ways. Just go through these steps again and move on.
When you have let the old thoughts and beliefs go, don’t turn back. ALLOW the new thoughts to burrow into your subconcisous. You may have to turn back to meditation (just do it everyday, already) and it WILL take work. Some of us are working with decades and decades of believing the old. But it’s possible.
Surround yourself with people and objects that reflect this new reality you want to create. Sometimes that means distancing yourself from people who do not energetically go with your desires. That can be difficult, but it depends on how much you want this new reality.
Sometimes it means getting rid of things that are of sentimental value. Again, how bad do you want change?
Do your part in setting up this new reality.
If it’s a new relationship you want, make space in your life for a relationship. Clear up a space in your schedule for potential dates. Doesn’t matter if you actually have any lined up (yet). Just make the time.
If it’s more money you want, can you get rid of any costs that really don’t make sense to you right now? Are you paying for a service you don’t even use (I’m looking at you, guy who hasn’t been to the gym in 7 months but still pays for a membership)? Why do you want the money? To buy new things? Maybe clear out some of the other items you have that you haven’t used in 4 years so that energetically, you have the space for the new items. Want the money for a vacation? Plan the trip. Plan out travel, lodging, activities, and anything else you want the trip to include. Simply plan it. Don’t worry about how it could come about. Just get excited and plan. The “How” has a funny way of working itself out ;). If it’s money for bills, think of what you’ll do after your bills are paid and do things that help you feel as though you’re doing the desired activities!
Is it a new car you want? Go test drive the car. Then treat your car as if it’s that car. Clean it up, service it, take out the pile of trash in your back seat. Get an air freshener that gives off the new car smell.
When you do things like this in setting up your new reality, you open yourself up to actually RECEIVING this new reality. Opportunities appear and magic happens.
Unlearning things that are deep rooted in your mind can seem daunting and nearly impossible. But once you set off on the path to do so, you won’t want to turn back. You’ll keep going and the more you allow yourself to experience the JOYOUS side of the journey, things will flow to you a lot quicker and easier.
So get out there and unlearn to learn ️<3