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The Ability To Believe

Jan 9, 2008
When a person has complete faith in their own abilities, it is amazing to see. This article will deal with that type of belief. When Terry Fox, the young man from British Columbia with only one leg, ran across Canada raising money for the Cancer Society, he had that kind of belief in himself. When Rick Hanson, restricted to a wheelchair, wheeled around the world doing his part to raise funds for spinal cord research, he had that kind of belief in himself. They both had no doubts in their abilities to do what they wanted to do.

The ability to believe in yourself creates a power to achieve what might ordinarily seem impossible. Having a strong belief in your abilities can have astonishing results. Within each of us resides the ability to do amazing feats, released by a desire to accomplish what is meaningful to us. When your self-confidence in your abilities is strong, it motivates our subconscious to spur our belief. Studies have shown that when we truly believe we can accomplish something, we do. To quote Mary Kay Ash, "If you believe you can, you will and if you believe you can't, you are right."

As your belief in yourself increases, you'll find that what you thought was only a dream becomes reality. There are ways to increase your self-confidence so that it will stir your belief. Always be positive about yourself. Mentor yourself, encouraging yourself to strive for better results. Set reasonable goals - as you reach them, it reinforces your confidence, so you can set your next goal higher. Be positive with yourself always. If you come up against disappointment, remain positive, and problem-solve with yourself to find another way for you to reach your goal. Being creative and positive will help build your self-confidence. As your self-confidence grows, you'll find your belief in abilities will grow as well. The ability to believe in yourself will make you a success in whatever you try to do. Once your belief in yourself has deepset roots, you'll find all sorts of things start happening for you.

In a school in the United States, a school conducted an experiment to show just how powerful belief can be.

A big class of students was divided into two small classes, according to their abilities. The average and above average students were in one group, and the students who were not performing as well into another group. The average and above average group continued their studies as usual. The remaining group was told by their teacher that they had been separated from the rest of the class because they were the smartest students, and were going to be tackling special assignments to prove how intelligent they were. They were sworn to secrecy, to keep the other students from feeling left out. Then they got the exact same assignments as the other group.

All year, the teacher of the second group praised the students, telling them how smart they were. By the end of the year, these former poor students were doing better than all the students in the other group. This experiment has been done several times all over the country, and always turned out with the same results. If people are told they are intelligent, good and can do terrific work, this reinforcement helps them believe in themselves, and they start improving. They reach a high level of ability because they believe they can achieve it.

You can do the same thing for yourself. Praise yourself over and over again. If you succeed at something, give yourself credit for it. Tell yourself repeatedly how intelligent and capable you are. Your subconscious mind will believe it if it hears the praise often enough. It works the other way too - if you constantly criticize yourself or speak negatively to yourself, your subconscious mind will believe that. This is why it is so important to always talk positively to yourself.

Remember the story of the Little Engine that Could. It is a known fact that someone with a negative outlook and attitude thinks "I can't do that", while someone with a positive outlook and attitude thinks "I know I can do that." Believing in the positive can overcome any adversity. All through history you can find stories of people who overcame substantial odds using the ability of believing in themselves.

If you are leading a group or company, think what a powerful tool belief can be. Praise your staff - let them know their work is very important and that others will benefit. You'll see the productivity increase to an amazing extent. Individuals will frequently work harder and take less for themselves if they believe that they are working for a goal that is linked to a belief they hold deep inside.

If you think there is a possibility of succeeding at what you are attempting, you'll find you use all the abilities you possess to achieve your ends. It is normal human nature. If we're doing something we don't believe in, most of us are not happy. In his book, "Authentic Happiness," psychologist Marty Seligman says that people are most fulfilled when using their personal strengths to overcome obstacles, if they believe that what they're doing makes a difference.

Values are based on beliefs; our choices are made and our goals are set so we can act according to our beliefs. It makes sense, then, that before we can make any major changes in our life, we need to believe that this change is possible. It makes no difference if the goal is to be a success in our occupation, or we want to be a better golfer, we will succeed more frequently and will work harder for that success if we believe we can do it.

In his book, "Think and Grow Rich," Napoleon Hill made this point very well when he stated, "Whatever a man can conceive and believe, he can achieve."
About the Author
Kevin Sinclair is the publisher and editor of My-Personal-Growth.com, a site that provides information and articles for self improvement and personal growth and development.
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