Belief Audit

The "auditing" process, using linguistic connectives, can be applied to strengthen other beliefs as well, by establishing "beliefs about beliefs." These can serve as additional justifications and support to have confidence in a particular belief.

As an example, let's say a person has doubts about whether he or she deserves to be healthy and attractive. Applying the Belief Audit process would involve repeating this belief and adding different connectives to the end of the statement. Filling in the blank created by adding the connectives serves to create links between that belief and other beliefs and experiences, and 'reframe' possible interferences.

Try it out using the following procedure.

'Belief Audit' Procedure

1. Identify a belief that you need in order to achieve a desired outcome, but about which you have some doubt (refer to the Belief Assessment Sheet in Chapter 5). Write down the belief you want to strengthen in the space marked 'Belief below.

2. For each of the 'prompt' words below, repeat the sentence expressing the belief. Then add the prompt word(s) and complete the sentence with whatever 'spontaneously' comes to mind.

3. When you are finished, read your answers all together and notice what has changed and what has been strengthened.

Belief:

because I/you__

Why is it (are you) desirable I possible I appropriate (capable /deserving/responsible) to reach the outcome?

therefore I/you__

What is an effect or requirement of this belief?

What has to happen to support this belief!

What else is going on concurrently with this belief?

whenever I/you_

What is a key condition relating to the belief?

What is the intention of this belief?

What constraints or results relate to this belief?

What alternatives or constraints are there to this belief?

in the same way that I/you_

What is a similar belief that you already have ?

As you try this process with one of your own beliefs, you will realize that some of the prompts are easier to respond to than others. You may also find that it is easier or more appropriate to respond to the prompts in a different order than they are listed. Of course you can feel free to answer the prompts in the order that feels most natural and comfortable for you or your group, and it is okay to leave some of the prompts blank. You will find, however, that the prompts which seem most difficult to answer often lead to some of the most surprising and insightful results.

Auditing a Belief From a Different Perspective

Sometimes it is difficult or unfruitful to audit a belief from your own perspective. In fact, doubts often arise because we are stuck in our point of view and cannot see any other choices.

Another way to use the Belief Audit process is to do it while considering the vision and belief from the shoes of another person, or 'mentor'. This can open up new 'perceptual space' and help to remove unconscious blocks to creativity. It can also help you to find unconscious or unnecessary assumptions.

This form of the Belief Audit can be done by identifying a person, either actual or hypothetical, who does have full confidence in the particular belief you have doubts about. Then you, or a partner, can step into the shoes of that person and 'role play'his or her responses to the various prompts. To facilitate the role play, you would want to use the word "you" instead of "I" when initially responding to the prompts.

Ib test the influence of the other perspective on your own confidence level, you can then repeat the responses generated by the other perspective substituting the word "I" for "You". It often helps to have another person read the responses to you first, so you can get a sense of the statement from both perspectives.

For example, if the statement generated from the role-played perspective is "You deserve to be healthy and attractive because You are a precious product of nature," you would repeat the response in first person. That is, you would say, "I deserve to be healthy and attractive because I am a precious product of nature."

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