UMBRELLA effect: Am I worthless? Part 1
The umbrella effect is how one belief can be so encompassing that it penetrates every area of your life.
Umbrellas are entrenched beliefs, generally stated as 'I am ….' statements. Here are some examples:
I am shameful/always to blame
I am not important
I am stupid
I am dirty/damaged
I am not good enough
I am unlucky
I am unwanted
Each umbrella will encompass behaviours, thoughts, feelings and attitudes that will operate together to bring about self-fulfilling prophecies. Therefore, if you believe that you are worthless, your behaviours etc will serve to maintain this belief. And furthermore, your belief will sabotage any attempts to extinguish the belief.
This is a formula to find out how much your umbrella's, or 'I am …..' statements currently impact on your life.
With relation to the 'I am worthless' umbrella, please consider the following:
Make note of at least five behaviours patterns e.g. pleasing others, meeting others needs first etc.
Make note of at least five dominant thought patterns e.g. self criticism, taking things personally etc.
Make note of at least five intense feelings associated with worthlessness e.g. guilt, shame etc.
When you become consider your worthlessness, describe your body posture and facial expression.
What is your:
Most recent memory that supports this belief
Most upsetting memory that supports this belief
Earliest memory that supports this belief
Which areas in your life is it apparent most, e.g. relationships?
Which people are most linked to this belief, both past and present?
What do you gain/maintain from having this belief, e.g. safety - the better the devil you know?
What do you miss out on from having this belief, e.g. opportunities to progress?
How much do you believe this belief to be true; 100% or less?
Has there been a time in your life when you received evidence to the contrary of this belief?
What would happen if you no longer believed that you were worthless?
Visualise a day in the life of this belief been absent. What it different? What changes do you notice in your body posture, facial expression, behaviours, how you feel and how you think?
Affirmation - I am worthy (top-down processing)
Reverse affirmation/ current belief - I am worthless (bottom-up processing)
Look out for part 2!