Believing You Create Your Life

Man in stocking cap standing at a mountain overlook watching the sun crestYou may have heard about the Placebo Effect or maybe even the Nocebo Effect, where the anticipation of something happening, either positive (placebo) or negative (nocebo) has a direct impact on the outcome. It might sound a little fishy at first, like how could this possibly be? However, over and over science has replicated research that shows it is real, it is powerful, and it is based on belief.

A few years ago Scientific America posted an article that stated drug companies were having problems making new pain killing medication because more people were responding from the placebo aspect than ever before. What does that mean? It means that when someone was given what they believed was medication and it wasn’t, that they got better nearly as often as those given actual medication. Simply from their belief that they would get better if they took something.

Antidepressants are another class of drug that has been blown out of the water by the placebo effect. Starting as far back as 2008 the medical community started to uncover that the pharmaceutical companies were manipulating data to make their drugs look better. A meta-analysis[1]showed that the placebo effect outperformed the drugs more than half the time and the difference in the depression rating of the patients was so miniscule that it could have been accounted for by a side effect of sedation the meds caused. Again, people got better because they believed they would.

Why is this important, other than it’s a great reason to find other ways to treat and heal things beyond medication? Well, my point is that what we believe affects our lives. It affects how we heal, our quality of life, and what goes on in our lives. If you hold in your mind a belief, it will find a way to manifest itself in reality. This goes for every area of our lives. If we believe we are stupid we will act that way, if we believe we deserve to be treated poorly we will find a way to make that true.

What do you believe? What beliefs do you carry with you that are manifesting in your life right now? Are they expansive and encouraging or are they dragging you down? How do they affect your interactions, your choices, and if you are able to live an authentic life? If you are interested in learning more about how belief affects our lives I invite you to listen to our podcast, Beliefs: Both the Conscious and Unconscious Saboteur. If you don’t know how to move beyond the beliefs that are holding you back please reach out. We have many services and programs that can help you let go of what doesn’t serve you and embrace the things that will brighten your path.


[1]Irving Kirsch et al., “Initial Severity and Antidepressant Benefits: A Meta-Analysis of Data Submitted to the Food and Drug Administration, “ PLoS Med5, no. 2 (2008): e45 doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0050045.

The Value of a Personal Promise

to people giving a high five
Colleagues giving a high five

Do you ever think about what your values are? You may have heard “Honor, Courage, and Commitment”, which are values that are held in the Navy and Marine Corp. Perhaps you know of the Army values which are: Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage.

What values do you hold? How do you move through life?  Above and beyond values, what are some other things that you can do in your life that not only represent the life you live, but things that can help you live that life to the best of your ability?

Something we teach at the clinic and promote among all our patients are “Promises To Keep” to ourselves.

Like values, if you are able to implement these promises your life would change: less suffering, more positivity, more love in all areas, more time to put your energy where you most desire. However, they take some work. Just like living with integrity, honor, respect, etc. sometimes the choices may seem simple yet we struggle to make them.

I’d like to talk to you about one promise in particular. That is, people aren’t doing things to you, or Don Miguel Ruiz’s version “Don’t take anything personally”. Have you ever gotten into a car to drive while you were really angry or tired? Did the other drivers, at that time, seem like they were intentionally trying to aggravate you and drive poorly to make your experience miserable? When you think about it, do you truly believe that anyone in any other car was really thinking about you and your experience? How about you personally, when you drive are thinking about every other persons driving experience in that moment? Or, is it that you are driving with intent on just getting somewhere? Then once in a while something may happen that causes another driver to get upset at you?

Here’s another scenario. You have to go to work and someone you love is sick or hospitalized. During the day it’s all you can think about. Amidst this personal crisis your coworkers are trying to interact with you, however you are very distracted. Is it realistic for them to take it personally and be upset that you don’t want to be involved in their conversation or interactions of the day when they don’t even know what’s going on? Are there days where you maybe have made some assumptions about someone who doesn’t act in a way you would want them to, and have taken it as a personal affront?

Speaking of assumptions……well, that’s another agreement for another time.

Not taking anything personally can free you of being the victim of someone’s words or action, and being taking responsibility for your own. It can help you to nourish more empathy and compassion for yourself and others. It can free you to be you, and let others be themselves without having to control a situation. Doesn’t that sound pleasant?

If you would like to learn more about the Promises and The Four Agreementsplease feel free to give a listen to our Podcast: Promises To Keep. You can also keep an eye on the programs page of our website, as we do offer a class on this topic frequently.

May you live your best life today and every day!