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Who am I really? Most of our undesirable behavior and feelings ultimately can be traced to our beliefs, so being able to get rid of beliefs will make the biggest long-term difference in your life. A belief, as I use the term, is a statement about reality that is the truth for us. It is experienced emotionally as the truth, because it is possible to intellectually disagree with something we believe. So the way to know you have a belief is to say the words of the belief out loud and then ask yourself: Do the words feel true?

Do they resonate even a little bit? Do they feel even a little uncomfortable? Most of our core beliefs about ourselves, people, and life are formed in the first six years of life as a result of interactions with our parents. Beliefs about other areas of life—such as work, politics, relationships, and aspects of society—usually are formed when we encounter them.

When you make that distinction, the belief is transformed into merely one interpretation you gave a meaningless series of events, and the belief disappears.

Many day-to-day problems that we face—such as procrastination, selling ourselves short, and trying to impress others—can usually be resolved by eliminating the beliefs that cause them. The Lefkoe Stimulus Process Many emotions are caused by beliefs, for example, the belief that Dogs are dangerous will result in an emotion of fear when confronting a dog.

When the beliefs are eliminated, the emotions usually will be also. There are many adults, however, who experience emotions that appear to not depend on beliefs. Very often we experience negative feelings in our life on a recurring basis, such as fear, anger, guilt, anxiety, and sadness.

We experience these feelings every time specific events or circumstances occur, such as fear whenever we make a mistake or someone gets angry at us, or guilt whenever we are asked to do something.

In many cases the events that stimulate the feeling in us do not produce the same feeling in others, and vice versa. Why, for example, does an event that is not inherently fearful produce fear in some people and not in others?

What appears to have happened is anything that occurs repeatedly or even once if the incident is traumatic enough at the same time that something else is causing an emotion will itself get conditioned to produce the same emotion. The classic example of this was an experiment a psychologist named Pavlov conducted with dogs. When presented with food, the dogs salivated.

Then a bell was rung just prior to presenting the dogs with food. After numerous presentations of the food with the bell, the bell was rung and no food was delivered. The dogs salivated anyway, because they had associated the bell with the food.

In other words, a stimulus that normally would not produce a response does so because it gets associated with a stimulus that does produce a response. In other words, the stimulus gets conditioned. Imagine that I handed you an ice cream cone with one hand and made a fist with my other hand and drew it back as if to hit you. What would you probably feel? Now imagine that the next few times someone handed you an ice cream cone, the same thing happened and you felt anxious each time.

What do you think you would feel the next time you were handed an ice cream cone, even if there was no menacing fist? If this next time there was no fist, only ice cream, why would you feel anxious? Because the ice cream cone got conditioned to produce fear when it became associated with the fist. Something was scaring you the fist and ice cream just happened to be there every time you got scared by the fist. Here is a real life example: Consider someone who experiences fear whenever he is asked to do something.

When did he first experience fear associated with being asked to do something? Assume the original source of the fear was a father who always yelled, threatened, and terrified the client as a child. No matter what the client did, the father was not satisfied.

When the client reviews the cause of his feeling of fear, he discovers that the fear was not inherent in being asked to do something. No love, no care; no care, no survival.

That is what caused the fear. Can you see that fear is not inherent in not doing things perfectly or, in fact, any other specific thing you do or do not do? It is simpler to use than the LBP and usually takes only five to ten minutes to completely de-condition the stimuli that cause such emotions as fear, anxiety, anger and guilt. The original cause of the fear was the meaning you attributed to the way you were asked to do something the anger that accompanied the request , by someone whose survival you depended on your father.

When you consciously make a distinction between what really caused the feeling initially and the events that happened to be associated with it, the associated events current stimuli for the feeling will no longer cause the feeling. It is important to realize that most of our emotional problems—such as anxiety, depression, anger, and sadness—cannot be eliminated totally merely by eliminating beliefs.

You also have to use the Lefkoe Stimulus Process. These weekly blog posts also exist as podcasts. Sign up for the RSS feed or at iTunes to get the podcasts sent to you weekly.


Lefkoe Belief Process



How Can I Use The Lefkoe Method? Part 1





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