What is a life story? To me, life stories are the beliefs we hold about our childhood, our cultural and religious backgrounds and the combined messages we received from parents, teachers and others whose opinion mattered to us growing up. They form the basis of how we view our talents and abilities (or lack thereof), our chances for success, whether the world around us is welcoming or not and how we interact with other people.
Such early beliefs embed themselves in our individual psyches and become (in our own minds) absolute truths. Although they are formed in the past, they can still underscore every thought and action we take now and in the future. That is… unless we make a concerted effort to examine these beliefs, reevaluate their efficacy and determine whether or not our particular life stories continue to serve us today.
The good news is that life stories—and the beliefs behind them—can be changed. After all, they are only thoughts you’ve told yourself over and over again. If you have been filling your head with negative beliefs about your body, your intelligence, your ability to deal with people, your personal power, your luck, or any other aspect of life… take a moment to ask yourself the following:
- How did my upbringing form my views of my place in the world?
- Am I limiting my goals and actions by believing my life stories?
- Are these particular stories meeting my needs and serving me today?
- How can I rewrite my life stories so that I can live the life I choose for myself now and in the future?
Stories hold power. But so do life perspective, maturity and wisdom. We have options to create a path that will both energize and engage us and make a difference in the lives of those we hold dear. So choose well… the stories of your life can either motivate and drive you forward or halt you in your tracks.
And every woman over 50 knows that onward is a far feistier direction!