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How to break free of limiting beliefs created by others without cutting off relationships

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Stone statue in a park of a woman embracing a man in forgiveness



Update: This post was originally written in March 2013 and had a link referring to an article submitted by Vatsala Shukla to Ezine Articles. The post has been revised and updated to include the original article which has since received 3 prestigious citations and more resources on Forgiveness.


I’m a member of quite a few groups on both Facebook and LinkedIn where every now and then an empowered lady member refers to her own battle to overcome emotions and feelings of inadequacy created by loved and trusted ones and how she emerged to see the light of her own beautiful self.

It would not be presumptuous on my part to guess that each and every one of us has at some point of time had to face the pain and impact on our psyche caused by others where we had to deal with the gremlin without cutting off relationships or breaking ties with the pain giver.  This week, I’m bringing out an old post from my archives and sharing resources for readers who may be facing this situation in an attempt to help them move forward.


Background to my need to Forgive – big time

The early part of March 2013 was a nightmare.

My website joined the elite group of hacked websites and blogs. This hacking was extremely personal as the hacker went and changed wordings and links that had to do with me as a person. The hacker knew about Life Coaching. I ended up self-coaching myself with affirmations and stress management techniques that I usually teach to my clients!

But it was also a week where I found support and encouragement when I needed it.  My Gratitude Diary is filled up.

Colleagues whom I admire and who are also friends shared the fact that their websites too had been hacked at some point and understood my plight.

The bottom line?

I asked the Universe for help and guidance and the Universe provided tenfold. Gratitude and visualization do work!

It was also a week where a dream came true. I stepped out of my comfort zone and took a leap of faith which worked. My article was published in Ezine Articles and I share the article with you.


Quote on forgiveness by Isabelle Holland



Do you need to forgive your loved ones for hurts that affect you in your adult life?

More often than not, there is a session in my Intuition Workshops where one of the participants will talk about the behavior of a relative or friend that brings out the worst in them and enforces the limiting belief of inadequacy or incompetence. This is usually followed by nodding heads across the room and more stories are shared.

We all have beliefs and thought patterns inside of us that our conscious thinking minds are even aware of. Some of these are inherent in our DNA while others are acquired and lie dormant in our sub-conscious mind yet affecting our behavior and reactions in many ways.

One of the most common sources of beliefs and patterns that we are conditioned to, start right in our childhood when parents, teachers or other adults teach us about right and wrong, good or bad. When it results in a positive attitude and a healthy approach to life, it is great but quite often the ones that we remember are the negative reinforcements and criticisms.

Some beliefs and thought patterns are taught to us directly by our parents and other adults by their repeatedly saying things to us like “That is not good enough” or comparing us with others and bringing out the fact that others are better than us. They may mean well, but that is not what happens!

The comparisons and hurtful words may have been spoken at a particular point in time and in a particular context which has long been forgotten but the sense of inferiority remains. In other cases, there has been emotional and other abuse which acts as a gremlin in our adult life and paralyzes us from moving forward.

Children are sensitive and do pick up the vibrations and unspoken body language. I would venture further and say that they absorb the energy in the auras of those who are stronger than them and the effects stay for a much longer time.

The same applies when we are dealing with people who are stronger than us and are able to influence us whether it is through domination or otherwise, until one fine day, as adults, we realize that we are hurting ourselves and feel the need to take back control of our lives and destiny.


Do Affirmations help to resolve self-doubt?

One can use affirmations and creative visualization to overcome self-doubt and find the inner resources to achieve goals but what if these affirmations do not work?

Affirmations are wonderful tools to instill confidence but if the root of the problem is deep and related to someone who is close to you or with whom you have regular and direct contact, whether a parent, sibling, teacher, boss, friend or someone who has influence over you, then no matter how many affirmations you may say, they will not work until you are able to silence that inner voice that says something to the contrary.

Your buttons will still be pushed and you will react rather than act. At the very best, you will be installing a counter belief but the limiting belief will still exist; you will achieve a neutral state but still find yourself swimming in a mental soup.


So, what should you do in such a case?

There is a technique that you can try without worrying about any side-effects which involves affirmations, forgiveness and your taking control of the situation.

The first step is to decide which limiting belief you wish to release yourself from and the perpetrator of that limiting belief.

Next, drink a glass of water visualizing that with each sip, you are cleansing yourself and preparing to take the required steps in a state of complete emotional calmness.

Then ground yourself using the technique of visualization. Perform this exercise seated on a chair with your back straight and feet flat on the floor or sit cross-legged on the floor with your back straight. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing.

Breathe in a normal fashion for a few seconds and then start your visualization breathing as follows:

Inhale deeply and visualize that you are inhaling white light smoke which is cleansing you of your negative feelings and beliefs. Visualize that it is going to the bottom of your stomach.

Then with every exhalation, visualize that this white light smoke has turned black and is carrying with it all the negative feelings that are inside your body.

Repeat this exercise for about a minute. Return slowly to consciousness by counting backwards from 10 to 1 and slowly open your eyes. You will feel balanced, rejuvenated and refreshed.

Once you feel that you are ready, say the following affirmation in a clear and strong voice:


“I accept that ______(name of person) has hurt me and I accept that I have allowed myself to be hurt. I forgive _________(name of person) and in the process I forgive myself. I now cut any and all psychic ties between ________(name of person) and myself. These ties are lovingly released, healed and sent into the Light and SO IT IS.”


Acknowledging that you have allowed the other person to hurt you returns control of the situation to you. By forgiving the person, you are letting go of the grudge and allowing yourself to be forgiven. In the open and sacred place created, you let go of any remaining remnants to be neutralized by Love and Light. While one cannot erase memories, one can remember them with neutrality, or at least take the sting out of them.

The best part about this technique is that you can do it on a daily basis as well as to heal past hurts. From experience I have noticed that something amazing does happen and interactions with the people for whom we use this technique actually improve.

Is it releasing Love into the Universe or releasing ourselves from our limiting beliefs and fears? It could be both. What I do know is that it works.

When we take back control, it reflects in our self-esteem, attitudes and perceptions and that is all that is needed to change the world for ourselves. It can take time, but the first step begins within us.

Have you ever had to apply the art of forgiveness to move forward? I’d love to read about your experience and tips that you can share with other readers who may need to know that forgiveness is possible.



Additional Resources on Forgiveness:

This post would be incomplete if I did not share additional resources that I have written or shared in the past on the topic of Forgiveness.

Forgiveness quote by James E Faust When Forgiving Helps to Heal and Improves Emotional Intelligence


Practice the muscle of forgiveness quote

Instead of Stoking the Flames of Resentment, Forgive by Vatsala Shukla




     Why Forgive? By Johann Christoph Arnold



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Vatsala_Shukla/1508679


As Featured On EzineArticles





PS. The book Why Forgive is suggested reading because I enjoyed and benefited from it. Please read my Privacy Policy (link in the footer of the website page) before considering your decision to read or purchase this book.




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22 Responses to “How to break free of limiting beliefs created by others without cutting off relationships”

  1. Forgiveness is such a huge topic and you have covered it beautifully. Why is it we can more easily talk and write about gratitude than forgiveness. I struggled with forgiving my parents for giving my sister & I into foster care. Even in adulthood, when I really understood, I still could not forgive. In the Jewish religion, on Yom Kippur we are asked to forgive ourselves & others for any wrong doing, known or unknown & it was in one of these yearly rituals I just declared it. In that moment the pain was gone. I also did some additional healing work around it and it is so gone. Thanks for a beautiful post.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      You’ve raised a question that I have often asked myself, Roslyn, that why it is easier to talk of Gratitude than Forgiveness. I’ve come to the conclusion that gratitude is easier to express with detachment while forgiveness brings up memories that our mind wants to shut out because they are painful. By acknowledging our pain, we bring it into the open and have an opportunity to deal with it. Our adult self can rationalize actions but the child inside us feels the sense of abandonment. I’m so happy you took the right steps to move forward. Your life story is similar to those in the book Why Forgive where people have saved themselves from further pain by letting go even though it is difficult. Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

  2. Ian Campbell says:

    Interesting post and technique Vatsala which I may have to try to overcome my limitations brought on by my upbringing. Thank you for sharing this and for imparting your knowledge.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      Thanks Ian. Forgiveness for wrongs done to us by those whom we trust as children or even as adults when are vulnerable takes time but in letting go of the past, it becomes easier to come into our own in the present. I make it a daily ritual to forgive those who may have upset me during the course of the day to let go of any emotional baggage that I don’t need. 🙂

  3. Beth Niebuhr says:

    Forgiveness is such a healing activity. I love your suggestion of gradually forgiving with each sip of water. Such a small thing but powerful. The visualization breathing exercise is wonderful too. Thank you for these techniques. I am happy to say that I don’t have things that require forgiveness each day but when I do, I will use your methods.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      I love it when the information I provide can be bookmarked for future use, Beth. The methods I’ve suggested are simple but powerful.

  4. This is a lovely article Vatsala and the topic is timely for us all. Forgiveness is very important for freeing ourselves of beliefs that no longer serve us in our current lives. The exercise you shared is a wonderful way to cleanse ourselves and release whatever belief is holding us back. Often our beliefs are unconscious and yet the pain we feel is very real. I’ve read that one unconscious belief is one million times more powerful than any affirmations or thoughts we consciously bring forward. The key is the willingness to release whatever is stopping us from letting go and forgiveness of both ourselves and those who may have caused us pain is liberating and freeing. The only way to move forward in our lives, is to let go of the past and leave it in the past.

  5. Thank you for sharing this. Forgiveness doesn’t come easily and it is something that I need to work on in a few areas. I love this method and I will definitely give it a try.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      I’m glad you found the post useful, Heather. The method is simple but very powerful. Forgiveness never comes easy unless one is a detached monk but we can do it.

  6. Tamuria says:

    I have been there with close family members Vatsala and for a while let anger poison my system. I was filled with venom that controlled every aspect of my life. My anger contributed to the sad and awful situation. I finally pulled myself out of it by forgiving and with the help of my grateful diary. It would have been impossible to remove the anger that was destroying me without first forgiving, the family members and myself. Thanks for this article, wish I;d known you back then. 🙂

    • Karmic Ally says:

      I wish I had known you back then too, Tamuria, we would have been good support buddies while working through our Forgiveness clearing. I read a saying a long time back that the people who hurt us the most are the ones that we never thought would hurt us. It is a cycle and the sooner it is broken, the better we are capable of not repeating patterns and affecting others. Thanks for sharing your experience with us. I appreciate you!

  7. Great exercise. I was beset by dreams of my ex-husband for a long time after our divorce. I wanted him out of my head. So one day, with a dear friend of mine and champagne glasses in hand, we toasted my ex. I apologized for all the pain I had caused him and wished him nothing but a successful and happy future. I ended the toast, “And I now release you from my life.” I have not dreamed about him since, and that’s been a good 10 years.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      That is a wonderful way to have let go of any subconscious guilt of your share of pain giving, Jackie. Forgiving and apologizing do go together.

  8. This is a great go-to exercise for when we feel that negative energy of limiting beliefs rising up. For myself, it takes awareness and practice.
    I also like your daily ritual of forgiving those who may have upset you during the course of the day, as you talk about in your reply to Ian’s comment.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      Thank you Jane. Welcome to The Karmic Ally Coaching Experience Blog. Doing a daily forgiveness practice helps to keep negativity at bay and lets us release matters that may not be of major consequence.

  9. What a great activity Vatsala. I’ll definitely try it sometime. I tend to actually forgive really quickly. Hopefully that’s not a problem, haha!

    What I normally do is to ask myself: What’s the most important thing here? And then I’m really able to reset myself and move on.

    • Karmic Ally says:

      Awareness of important matters and not sweating over the small stuff helps to keep us moving forward, Delia. The ability to easily and quickly forgive others is a blessing. The question is, do you forgive and forget or forgive but not forget? 🙂

  10. Forgiveness is so important, for just having a healthy life, period 🙂 What an awesome post Vatsala 🙂

  11. Kaz says:

    Great tips and great blog! When limiting beliefs come in my head, it’s sometimes hard to control and stay positive just by doing affirmation and visualization because I can’t believe it deep inside. So I need to try your technique “forgiveness”. I believe it will be a great way to move forward without feeling “stuck” at one situation. Thank you for sharing tips Vatsala!

    • Karmic Ally says:

      You’ve made my day, Kaz! Thank you!!

      Affirmations and visualization are powerful tools but until one is able to let go of ‘issues’ at the sub-conscious level, we take away a lot of the power of those tools. As Roslyn mentioned in her comment, there is a lot of talk of Gratitude but not so much of Forgiveness which requires deeper Inner Work. All the best to moving onward and upward!

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Meet your coach

I believe the world would be a better place if high achieving professionals accepted setbacks and challenges to their careers as Wake Up Calls to embark on a Journey where their empowered course correcting actions create a New World Order that encompasses achieving their career aspirations & potential with authentic life balance.

I work with driven, passionate, talented and ambitious professionals who’ve hit a speed breaker in their business or career create their desired breakthrough reclaiming control of their situation with customized strategies and tactics that deliver results.

When my clients first reach out to me, they are not in a very happy place, needing clarity about themselves, their desires, chosen vocation and what will give them peace of mind. They are drawn to me for the very reasons that I highlight in Who Is Karmic Ally Coaching.

Their professional problems are playing havoc with other areas of their life. They know they need to take radical steps to change the status quo but they also know they need support and accountability to get them their desired result.

I really get it, because I’ve experienced that dark night of the Soul. I know firsthand the outcome of getting lost in my work rationalizing decisions that were detrimental to other aspects of my life.

I’ve struggled with and won battles of stress management, corporate politics, life balance and career decisions to emerge in a place where I can confidently say that I live my desired life according to my personal Manifesto and have created a business that provides me with a platform for my desired lifestyle and self-expression for myself. I want that for you too!

I adhere to the Certified Coaches Alliance Code of Ethics and Standards. A copy is available on request.
1st place BCB 2012
Email: Vatsala(at)karmicallycoaching(dot)com Phone:91 9818517664
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