The Belief Change Cycle Procedure

The following procedure is a technique that 1 developed whose purpose is to help lead people through the natural cycle of belief change. It involves the use of anchoring and inner mentors to help lead people through the sequence of states making up the belief change cycle: 1) wanting to believe, 2) becoming open to believe, 3) believing, 4) becoming open to doubt, 5) the experience of remembering something one used to believe, and 6) trust.

The procedure involves establishing separate locations for each of these, and then anchoring the corresponding state to each location. Arrange the states of the cycle in the pattern shown below:

Patterns of Locations for the Belief Change Cycle

The experience of 'trusting' in something beyond your beliefs is placed in the center of the cycle to serve as a type of 'meta position' and 'ecology check' for the rest of the process.

To 'anchor' the states, apply the process followed in the earlier "anchoring" exercise, putting yourself as fully as possible into the experience and physiology associated with each of these aspects of the cycle of belief change and 'anchoring' them to appropriate spatial locations:

1. Wanting to believe' something new.

2. The experience of being 'open to believe' something new.

[Note: You may identify a 'mentor' that helped you to become more 'open to believe' by 'resonating' with, releasing or unveiling something deeply within you. Then make a physical space for the mentor near the 'open to believe' space. Mentors can include children, teachers, pets, people you've never met but have read about, phenomena in nature (such as the ocean, mountains, etc.) and even yourself.]

3. The beliefs that you 'currently believe' now, including any limiting beliefs or beliefs that conflict with the new belief you would like to have more strongly.

4. The experience of being 'open to doubt' something you had believed for a long time.

[Again, you may identify another 'mentor' that helped you to become more open to doubt something that was limiting you in your life.l

5. Beliefs that you 'used to believe' but no longer believe. [This is the space I have called the 'museum of personal history'.J

6. An experience of deep 'trust' - perhaps a time when you did not know what to believe anymore but were able to trust in yourself or a higher power.

[It can be very powerful to add mentors who have helped you build this experience of trust.]

These states and mentors do not need to have any connection to the current belief issue you are trying to resolve.

^Landscape' of States Associated with the Belief Change Cycle

Implementing the Belief Change Cycle

Once this landscape has been laid out it can be utilized in many different ways. One of the common ways in which to use it is to have a person think of a new belief that he or she would like strengthen and simply 'walk it' through the natural steps of the cycle. The instructions would proceed as follows:

1. Stand in the 'Want to Believe' space, think of the 'new belief that you would like to have more confidence in. Holding this belief in mind move into the 'Open to Believe' space. (If you have chosen a 'mentor' for this state, you may step into his or her 'shoes' at this point. Seeing yourself through the eyes of your mentor, you may give the you who is 'open to believe' the new beliefs any helpful advice or support.)

2. Feel what it is like to become more open to believe this new belief. When you intuitively feel the time is appropriate, step into the 'Currently Believe' space concentrating on the new belief you want to have.

3. If there are any conflicting or limiting beliefs that come up in the 'Currently Believe' space, hold them in your mind and move to the 'Open to Doubt' space. (Again, if you have chosen a 'mentor' for your 'open to doubt' state, you may step into his or her 'shoes' at this point. Seeing yourself through the eyes of your mentor, you may give the you who is becoming 'open to doubt' any of the limiting or conflicting beliefs some helpful advice or support.)

4. Ecology Check: Go to the 'Trust' space and consider the positive intents and purpose of both the new belief and any conflicting or limiting beliefs. Consider whether there are any changes or revisions you would like to make to the new belief. Also consider if there are any parts of the old beliefs that would be worth retaining or incorporating along with the new belief.

5. Return to the old limiting or conflicting beliefs that you left in the 'Open to Doubt' space, bringing the insights you had from the 'Trust' space and move them into the 'Used to Believe' space—your 'Museum of Personal History'.

6. Step back into the 'Currently Believe' space and focus on the new beliefs you want to strengthen. Experience your new sense of confidence and verbalize any new insights or learnings that you may have discovered during this process.

7. Ecology Check: Again step into the Trust' Space and consider the changes you have made. Know that, because this is a natural, organic and ongoing cycle, the process can continue to evolve and that you can make any necessary adjustments in the future in the way that is most appropriate and ecological for you.

Many people find that simply walking through these locations (or even imagining walking through these locations) and reexperiencing the states allows them to gently and spontaneously begin to shift their beliefs.

[Note: In order for a belief to become completely installed (i.e., fully "in the muscle"), it may be necessary to repeat this cycle for each of the five key beliefs that we explored in Chapter 5 - i.e., believing that something is: 1) desirable, 2) possible, 3) appropriate, 4) that you are capable to reach it, and 5) that you deserve it.]

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