The Incredible Power of Belief and It’s Impact on Our World – Part 1

When I read this statement, “As a man believes in his heart…so he is” almost fifteen years ago it really struck a cord with me like never before. Of course I had heard this before, but this time it was different. This time it really got through. It means to me that when you have a true belief…not just a casual belief but a true, deep seated, unshakable, unquestionable belief that is backed by real conviction that it is IN FACT true, then this is in fact reality…for you!

What do I mean by this? I need to tell a story here…a very true story. Do you know the true story of the 4 minute mile?

For thousands of years it was believed that man was not physically capable of running a mile race in under 4 minutes. For generations the elite of the runners could never get past that barrier. Four minutes and a half…four minutes twenty seconds…four minutes fifteen seconds, but never close to the actual 4 minute barrier. In fact many doctors were on record having said it just was not possible…the human body was not built in such a way that it could endure the strain needed to accomplish such a feat. Many said that the heart itself would simply explode or fail under such strain.

Generation after generation ran as hard as possible only to yield to the 4 minute barrier. Then one day in 1954 Roger Bannister did the impossible—he ran the mile in under 4 minutes. When he was interviewed afterwards he was asked how he did it. His answer was simply, “I ran the mile in my imagination so many times in under four minutes…lap by lap….stride for stride….breath by breath, that I new it was only a matter of time until I would accomplish it in real life”.

He imagined the strain he would feel, the fatigue, the burning lungs, the straining for oxygen and he imagined running through all of this successfully. It was only a matter of time in his mind until what he had already accomplished so many times in his mind would actually be played out in real life at an actual track event.

So it wasn’t any new physical training techniques, or new vitamins or supplements, or new and better running shoes…but merely the belief…the conviction that he would actually accomplish what everyone else deemed to be impossible.

What is even more powerful though is that though is what happened after Roger Bannister did the “impossible”. Within one year 37 other runners also broke the 4 minute barrier. Within two years over 300 other runners also did the “impossible”. Why? Because it was no longer impossible—someone had paved the way to show that it was possible and as a result had created a whole new belief system in it’s place.

That sudden shift from what was once “impossible” for thousands of years was changed in an instant through one simple thing…the power of belief.

It is so critically important we take a close look at the beliefs we hold true. Are they empowering or disempowering? What are they based on…simply that we have not yet accomplished something yet and therefore believe it is not possible? I think when we actually look closely at the beliefs we do have, many of them were simply “adopted” because they were easily accessed.

What I mean is that we often accept the current beliefs of those around us, those we respect, those of our society because we unfortunately just “go with the flow” of current thought. It actually takes time and effort to really dig deep and find out what we truly believe and most are not willing to do this, so they take the easiest way out and go with what others believe unless or until it no longer serves them or it causes some major conflict for them.

There is incredible power in belief itself…and when you combine belief with true, unshakable conviction you have an unstoppable force. Whether the belief is actually “true” or not is irrelevant because for the one who holds that belief…it is true enough…it is true in their world. This is why it is so very important we take a close look at what we truly do believe about ourselves and our futures. Let’s make sure our beliefs encourage and build up instead of tearing down ourselves and others.

What beliefs do you currently have that are holding you back from accomplishing something worthwhile in your life? Challenge those beliefs that have held you back from going for those goals that inspire you. Find new beliefs that propel you forward to accomplish those things in life that make you whole and complete. Go for what makes passionate about life and don’t allow old thought patterns to hold you back anymore!