Does it matter what we believe?

Research suggests that 95% of the time our mind reverts to the beliefs we hold in our subconscious, laid down before we were seven.

Pain can be caused by the body expressing a disconnection between those beliefs and what we consciously believe now.

We particularly revert to these long held beliefs in times of stress or when we are under pressure. It appears that during childhood we learn our belief system from the 'significant' others around us - be it our parents, older siblings, other family members, neighbours, friends or teachers. We observe how they deal with adversity, joy, money, relationships, in fact every aspect of living and we adopt their beliefs almost by osmosis. These form our 'core' beliefs.

'Give me the child until he is seven, and I will give you the man'

St Frances Xavier

Jesuits recognised that a child learns without discrimination until the age of about seven, and neuroplasticity of the brain research supports this now.

Later in life as adults many of these 'core' beliefs are no longer part of our belief system on a conscious level. However, under stress or otherwise we might automatically revert to them as a gauge against which we measure ourselves and others. Joseph Pilates famously said it takes 10,000 repeats to change a movement pattern, and a similar number of repeats are required to change a 'core' belief. It is as if they are instilled within us, logically we can disown them but when under pressure they can come back into play.

Many people who have successfully resolved their chronic pain have addressed their beliefs and bravely 'reprogrammed' their core beliefs to suit their present lifestyle. Brave, because it might require digging deep, churning up a few things and then doggedly sticking with the repeats to establish fresh self selected beliefs. This may need expert support and the use of specific tools.

So it seems it does matter what we believe, as chronic pain can be the body's expression to the brain that our beliefs are not true to who we are now.

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