Changing Your Beliefs

Changing Your Beliefs

Lisa O'Neill

Lisa O'Neill

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When we say the word ‘belief’ we often think of big things like; Do you believe in God? Do you believe in yourself?


I spend a lot of my time speaking to people about their beliefs.

When we say the word ‘belief’, we often think of big things like; Do you believe in God? Do you believe in yourself? While these big beliefs hold a lot of weight, I find that it is the little beliefs that are really the problem. They are often so small that we have no awareness of them and yet they trip us up every day.

Two years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting James Clear when he spoke at one of our Business School Immersions. James is the author of ‘Atomic Habits’ and his keynote got me thinking about my habits and how they were linked to my beliefs.

One of my most annoying habits is the fact that I never hang my clothes up at the end of each day. I step out of them and into something else. The result of this behaviour is that I often have piles of clothes all over my bedroom which makes things hard to find and very messy.

Eventually, I’ve had enough and spend several hours tidying everything up while telling myself this has got to stop as I do not have time to ‘tidy my room’ like a naughty teenager.

Reading ‘Atomic Habits’ helped me realise that the actual problem behind my large mess is that I do not believe that I am a tidy person. I have always felt like a messy person. This was heavily affirmed for me as a child being constantly told that I was messy. After years of listening to this, I have fully accepted this as a truth – that I am messy and have for years believed my life sentence was a messy bedroom.

Except beliefs can be changed. It is not easy but it definitely can happen.

In the past 5 years, I have come up against so many beliefs – big and small that have needed to be addressed as I grew myself and my practice.

Beliefs about being clever, beliefs about being commercial, beliefs around markets I could and could not work with.

To know if a belief is a problem I love to use Byron Katie’s famous questions from her book ‘Loving What Love Is’.

  1. Is it true?
  2. Can you absolutely know that it’s true?
  3. How do you react when you believe that thought?
  4. Who would you be without the thought?


So is it true that I am a messy person? No. I am actually quite tidy but when I am tired I cannot be bothered with the discipline of tidying as I go.

When I say “I am a messy person” – or heaven forbid, someone else brings it up – I get angry. I have no interest in being a messy person.

Who would I be without this thought? I would be a tidy person. I would be someone who respects her space (and the fact that my long-suffering husband often cannot find his way to bed some nights!)

So I changed my thought, and behaviour, by asking myself a simple question:

What would a tidy person do? A tidy person would put the coffee away after using it. A tidy person would hang her clothes up at night. A tidy person would pop her cup into the dishwasher rather than stacking it on the bench…

  • What are the beliefs that are getting in your way?
  • Do you believe that you have a solution worth selling?
  • Do you believe you are worth the cost of your programs?
  • Do you believe that you are commercially smart?

Try running your limiting beliefs through Byron’s wonderful questions and change your mind!


Lisa O’Neill

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