Are Your Beliefs Holding You Back?

DR JOHN DEMARTINI   -   Updated 1 year ago

Dr Demartini explains how to overcome so-called limiting beliefs that you may perceive to be holding you back - beliefs you’ve inculcated from external authorities or self-doubt when you’re not living congruently with your highest values.


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DR JOHN DEMARTINI - Updated 1 year ago

You might have heard me speak before about values. If not, it may be helpful for you to imagine a ladder with many rungs on it. At the very top of the ladder is your highest value – your top priority and what is most important to you. As you go down the ladder, you have lower rungs that are less valuable, less of a priority and less important to you.

This hierarchy of values or value structure that you live by is unique. In fact, it's fingerprint specific. 

Nobody has the same set of values as you, which means that you will be surrounded in life by people with a very different set of values to you. Some of those people with similar values are likely to be more supportive and may even become a friend. Other people with very different values may be more challenging to get along with and may even be perceived as an enemy. 

Here’s why I believe identifying your highest values is key to dissolving what some have called limiting beliefs that may be holding you back.

Having spent almost five decades teaching and traveling around the world, I estimate that over 90% of people unconsciously attempt to live by duty or according to what they think they “should”, “ought to” or “must” do - more than what they would love to do or are spontaneously inspired from within to do.

In my seminar, the Breakthrough Experience, I have worked with thousands of individuals who say they have goals that they intend to accomplish, but somehow don’t ever get around to beginning or following through on the very crucial actions steps required to achieve them. 

In the majority of cases, they perceive that there is something wrong with themselves, or that they lack self-discipline. They are often surprised when I tell them that their lack of action is more likely the result of attempting to live in accordance with their lower values instead of aligning their life so they live congruently with their highest values.

Their use of imperative language is often valuable in identifying how they have injected and inculcated other people’s values – people they have unwisely put on a pedestal and envied and tried to imitate, instead of honoring what is truly most important to themselves. Imperative language includes words and phrases such: “I should”, I ought to”, and “I must” instead of “I would love to”, “I choose to” “I get to”, or “I am inspired to”.

As I often say in my seminars, living in other people’s values often results in self-depreciation, beating yourself up, and trying to conform instead of standing out and being unique. It’s also when you tend to experience the most self-doubt, self-depreciation and futility, instead of self-worth, certainty and utility.

However, when you do something that is high on your list of values; that you’re truly engaged in, inspired by, fulfilled by, and that you spontaneously take action on; this is where you tend to excel and achieve

When you live in alignment with your highest values and by highest priority, this is also where you are most likely to be disciplined, reliable, and focused; walk your talk and not limp through your life. As you reach your goals and do what you say you’re going to do, your self-worth and self-belief goes up as a result.

On the other hand, the second you attempt to do something that's lower on your values, you will often procrastinate, hesitate and frustrate, and are more likely not to do what you say you’re going to do.

As an example, my highest values are teaching, researching, and writing. I do them most every day without anyone needing to remind me or motivate me to do them. 

But when it comes to cooking and driving, should I not delegate those tasks, I am most likely to be unreliable and let myself and others down. Were this to be the case, my belief in myself in fulfilling those areas would likely decrease.

Any time you set an objective or a goal that is not aligned and congruent with your highest values, you tend to have self-depreciating thoughts and a diminished sense of self-worth. 

You will also tend to offload decision-making to other authorities instead of having certainty and belief in your own decision-making abilities in this area.

So, whenever you're attempting to live by your lower values instead of your highest values, you’re likely to be uncertain, doubtful, take and inject the values of others that you perceive are more successful or more achieving in those areas, subordinate to them, and create the so-called limiting beliefs that hold you back.

WHY they're limiting is because you've taken on a belief and attempting to do an action that doesn't match your own highest value. As such, you’ll tend to think, “I need to be doing this” or “I should be doing that, thereby expecting yourself to do something you likely won’t get around to doing. 

This imperative language is VALUABLE FEEDBACK to let you know that you are likely envying or imitating someone and trying to be someone you’re not, thereby losing your authenticity. 

It may surprise you to learn that your brain doesn't want you to lose your identity, so it creates symptoms of self-depreciation and so-called limiting beliefs. These are designed to try to get you back to authenticity and living congruently with your highest values so you can be inspired, vitalized and grateful for life instead of requiring extrinsic motivation to get through it.

What you SAY is important to you may not truly be so important to you after all.

A frequent example that comes up regularly during my seminar the Breakthrough Experience is people who say they would love to build financial wealth and independence, yet their life shows little to no evidence that they have purchased something that goes up in value and that gives them passive income to be able to build that wealth and financial independence. Instead, it shows evidence of buying immediately-gratifying consumables that depreciate in value. 

To put it more clearly, what they SAY and what they're ACTUALLY DOING are two different things.

One of the reasons I developed the Demartini Value Determination Process on my website ( is because there are millions of people who are wandering around thinking that they know what is truly most important to them, when their lives already indicate that they don’t value what they think they value (at least consciously). 

If you haven’t already done so, I would love you to take the time to answer the 13 simple questions that will help you discern what is truly valuable to you. I am certain that identifying your highest values and aligning your life so you live congruently with them will result in you having the highest probability of setting real goals that you are spontaneously inspired to act upon instead of the so-called limiting beliefs that hold you back.

Finding it challenging to stay focused?

If you have to ask, “How do I stay focused?” then what you are doing is likely not important to you, not your highest value, and not truly a priority to you. You may perceive it to be important, but your life is clearly reflecting that it isn’t. 

It’s for this reason that I encourage people to be as honest as possible when going through the Demartini Value Determination Process, and to answer what their life already demonstrates.

It may be helpful to imagine you had a drone looking down on your life and objectively recording what it demonstrates.

Your life demonstrates what you value most. 

Whenever you set a goal that doesn’t match or isn’t congruent with what you truly value most, you're designed to self-depreciate and create limiting beliefs that hold you back because you're being held back from something that's not true for you to get you back on track with what truly is most important.

That's why, if you don't really have a value on wealth building and financial mastery as one of your top three of four values, you’re highly unlikely to get around to doing it.

If your value is on your child’s education, you will likely spend money on that instead of investing it. 

If you have a value on your physical appearance, you are likely to put it into clothes, beauty treatments and a gym contract. 

Your life already demonstrates your values – you’re already doing what's truly valuable to you. However, you may not be appreciating and honoring those values because you’re comparing yourself to someone else and trying to be someone you are not.

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said that envy is ignorance and imitation is suicide. 

It is not wise to imitate others. Why be a second-rate version of them. It is wiser to instead work on being a first rate version of yourself.

I teach the Demartini Method during my two-day Breakthrough Experience program – a scientific method to help you take all the self-judgments you have of yourself and others, and dissolve them. 

  1. If you infatuate with somebody and put them on a pedestal, you’ll tend to inject their values into your life. 
  2. If you put them in a pit, you’ll tend to project your values onto them. 
  3. When you expect others to live in your values, you’ll likely experience futility. 
  4. When you expect yourself to live in someone else’s values, you're likely to have a limiting belief, doubt yourself, self-depreciate, question yourself., and offload your decision-making onto someone else.

It can be a vicious cycle.

The Demartini Method can help you dissolve infatuations, dissolve the resentments, identify where you inject or project your values from, and find out where you're proud or shamed as compensation for the resentments and infatuations and dissolve those. 

As such, you return to authenticity, love yourself for who you are, align your life with your highest values live by priority instead of holding onto beliefs and injected values that appear to be holding you back.

You self-worth will then go up because you are doing what you love, walking your talk, inspired to get up every morning and fulfill your mission and purpose, and build incremental momentum. 

You’ll also wake up your leadership and genius, objectivity and problem solving, and fill your days with high-priority actions that inspire you instead of low-priority tasks that don’t.

Neurologically, identifying your highest values and living according to them can be a game-changer.

It also determines which parts of your brain come online.

When you live congruently with your highest values, your blood, glucose, and oxygen go into the forebrain, the executive center. As such, you’ll tend to make wise decisions like an executive, set real goals in real time frames, mitigate risk, push through challenges without giving up, and increasing your self-worth.

When you attempt to live in your lower values, the blood, glucose and oxygen go into the amygdala in your subcortical brain, which is a more primitive area designed to seek pleasure and avoid pain As such, you’ll tend to be a follower, be run by your impulsive and instinctive emotions and the external world, and react to life instead of being proactive in your approach to it.

These volatilities, again, are valuable feedback to let you know that you’re likely focusing on low-priority tasks that are holding you back from living an extraordinary and inspiring life. It is then wise to go back to basics, realign your life with your highest values, and perhaps go through the Demartini Value Determination Process.

To sum up:

An empowered life emerges when you are congruent and living by your top three to five highest values. There is no right or wrong value system, or one that you are ‘supposed’ to have.

Your values reflect what is true for you, and what is really inspiring to you. What you highest value is also your inspired service to the world.

You would be wise to find out what is meaningful to you so you cannot wait to get up in the morning and do that, instead of spending your days doing what you perceive you “should” or “ought” to be doing.

If you would love to transform and transcend beliefs that may be holding you back, a wise starting point is:

  1. Identifying your highest values;
  2. Aligning your life so you live congruently with them; and
  3. Prioritizing your life in a way that you spend the majority of your time and focus on those highest values.
  4. Delegating low priority actions.

If you haven't already done so, completing the Demartini Value Determination Process will help you identify your highest values, structure your life according, delegate lower-priority tasks, excel, and experience more certainty as a result.

As such, you are less likely to experience self-doubt and more likely to grow your self-worth as you become disciplined, inspired and reliable in those areas.

If you would love some assistance in this process, while also learning to dissolve emotional baggage, lopsided perceptions and belief systems that are holding you back, I would love to have you join me at my next two-day online Breakthrough Experience program that I teach most every week. 

I would love to teach you how to dissolve the comparisons you have to other individuals and dissolve the emotions that arise when you're not living by your highest priority, and are trapped in these so-called limiting beliefs, insecurity and uncertainty as a result.


Are you ready for the NEXT STEP?

If you’re seriously committed to your own growth, if you’re ready to make a change now and you’d love some help doing so, then book a FREE Discovery call with a member of the Demartini Team so we can take you through your mini power assessment session.

You’ll come away with a 3-step action plan and the foundation to empower your life.


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