How to deal with a misunderstanding at an early age that has lead to a negative self belief
Many of the things we believe as truth are things that we learned at a very early age. For example, we may believe that we’re not worthy of love, or that we don’t deserve to be happy.
Ask yourself this: If a four year old child came up to you on the street and said “you’re horrible”, would you listen?
Of course not, you’d laugh, maybe pat the child on the head, and walk away.
So why do we believe these things so strongly when it’s our four year old selves that have told us these things?
Often, as children, we’ve experienced things, reached a (wrong) conclusion, and then ended up believing that for the rest of our lives.
A lot of the deepest hurts and most destructive self-beliefs have come about from things that happened to us as very small children.
The important thing to realise is – if, as adults, we experienced the same situation, we would respond completely differently. As a result, our beliefs would also be completely different.
So why not remove those destructive beliefs now?
The key things to do here are:
a) forgive our childish selves for mis-interpreting the situation
b) forgive the other players in that situation (whether parents or other authority figures) for their part
c) re-interpret the situation as adults
The amount of relief and freedom this can bring has to be experienced to be believed.
In a general format, here’s how I’d suggest resolving these early misunderstandings, and removing these negative beliefs.
Think of the earliest negative memory you can. Perhaps being told off, or a bad day, or when someone you loved let you down. This is your “situation”.
While continually tapping the karate chop or collarbone points, say the following phrases, and as you do, pay attention and pick out the one that has the biggest effect on yourself:
- Even though [describe the situation] I deeply and completely love and accept myself
- Even though [describe the situation] I forgive myself for interpreting it the way I did
- Even though [describe the situation] I forgive [other person/people involved] for what they did
- Even though [describe the situation] I deeply and completely love and forgive myself
- I choose to release the pain associated with [describe the situation]
Tapping out the negative and in the positive
[tapping with two fingers, 5-10 times each of the points in turn, saying one, any or all of the phrases below. You’re looking for something that brings up a reaction inside you. Once you get that reaction, keep saying that phrase at each point until you feel the reaction fade away. Either continue with that phrase, or the other phrases until you finish that round (ie, you end up at your crown)]
- [describe your situation]
- [describe how the other person acted/behaved]
- [describe how you reacted]
- and this has lead me to believe that I am [describe long term effect]
- I believe that [long term effect]
- this situation made me believe that [long term effect]
[now you want to resolve the issue, release it, and replace it with an adult understanding of the situation.]
- but that’s ok, I understand why I did that now
- and even though I reacted like that, I deeply and completely forgive myself
- and I forgive my [however old you were] self for believing that
- I forgive [other person/people] for doing that
- I can see that they meant well
- I just interpreted it badly, because I was so young
- and that’s ok
- it’s all ok now
- I realise that all [other person/people] were trying to show me was [describe their intention]
- and I forgive them for that
- as an adult, I can look back, and see the truth of the situation
- and I release myself from this old, limiting belief
- I embrace and accept this true understanding that [describe your ‘adult’ interpretation]
then take a deep breath, and let it all go
Note that you may not even know what your “adult understanding” is when you start. Often while tapping you may discover new understandings, new ways of viewing the situation that may not have been present before.
So, to a specific example. When I was about 5, I fell off my bike, and skinned my knee (lots of blood, very horrific). On the way back up the hill, I stopped at my best friend’s house, whereupon his mother doted on me, made a big fuss, and put a plaster on me. When I went home to mum, she brushed it off, saying “unless there’s bone poking out, don’t worry about it, it’s not so bad.”. Of course, as a 5 year old, I took this quite badly. I figured that I wasn’t worthy of being loved (or maybe just that I had the meanest mum in the world).
As an adult, I can see that really, she was teaching me to be resilient, and not to fuss over minor incidents (which worked, that’s exactly how I am now).
Anyway, that’s the back story, here’s what I tapped on:
While continually tapping the karate chop or collarbone points, I just said the following:
- When I was five I fell off my bike down the street. Even though my best friend’s mum was nice, and my mum told me not to worry about it, which really upset me, I deeply and completely love and forgive myself.
- Even though it upset me, and it made me feel like I wasn’t worthy of love, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.
- I know my mum was just trying to teach me to be strong, and I forgive her, completely and totally.
- I choose to release the pain associated with feeling that I’m not worthy of love.
Tapping out the negative
While tapping around all the points, I just said the following:
- When I was five I fell off my bike down the street.
- Mum told me not to worry about it.
- This really upset me.
- I decided it was because I wasn’t worthy of love
- My mum not being loving to me made me believe I wasn’t worthy of love
- I believe that I’m not worthy of love
- I’m not worthy of love
- Even though I believe I’m not worthy of love, I deeply and completely love and accept myself now
I continued tapping, alternating these last two statements, until I cried, then kept going until I calmed right down again
Tapping in the positive
While tapping around all the points, I just said the following:
- But that’s ok, I understand why I felt like that
- I forgive my five year old self for believing I wasn’t worthy of love
- I realise that my mum was just trying to teach me to be strong
- I forgive her for saying what she did
- and I’m glad she said that, because I am strong now
- I’m glad she reacted like that.
- and I choose to let go of my five year old interpretation
- I choose to forgive my five year old self for making five year old judgements
- and I choose to understand and appreciate and love my mum for what she taught me
- I choose to release myself from the belief that I am not worthy of love
- and I know my mum loves me deeply
- even if I didn’t understand it at the time
- I am completely and totally worthy of love
- I am very worthy of love
- I embrace and accept this true understanding that I am strong, and worthy of love
then I took a very deep breath, and let it all go
As always, don’t worry too much about the exact words. Don’t worry about repeating yourself. If what you’re saying is affecting you, or it feels right, then it’s the right thing to say. Only you can know exactly what the best thing to say is. I’ve only given you these personal examples so you have an idea of roughly what to do.