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There might be nothing more powerful than belief.


You probably have that little voice inside your head that whispers, “You can do this!” or sometimes doubts whether you’re capable. Well, whether you believe you can or you believe you can’t, you’re absolutely right.


Science backs this up. Trust me, it’s not just a “nice” thing to say.


  • Research conducted by psychologist Robert Rosenthal and others demonstrated the Pygmalion effect or self-fulfilling prophecy. In their landmark study, teachers were led to believe that certain students were “academic bloomers” based on false information. As a result, these students showed greater intellectual gains compared to their peers. This study highlights how others’ expectations, as well as our own, can influence our performance and outcomes.


  • Then there’s psychologist Carol Dweck, who talks about the two types of mindset most people have – fixed or growth. She found that if you embrace challenges and persevere in the face of setbacks, then you’re more likely to ultimately achieve greater success compared to those with a fixed mindset, which says you’re just stuck as you are.


  • You’ve probably heard of the placebo effect, cited by countless researchers in medical trials. They have known for years that people given a sugar pill often experience the same results as those given actual medicine – because they’ve been told the sugar pills will have a positive effect.


Understanding the influence of belief opens possibilities for harnessing this power. Try these tactics.


  1. Cultivate that growth mindset. Embrace challenges. Refer to yourself as someone who’s always up for improvement, rather than someone who’s afraid of trying new things.
  2. Visualize your success. Picture yourself crushing those Pilates sessions, finishing that 5K, or getting off those meds. Involve the other senses, too, not just sight. What will it sound like? Smell like? FEEL LIKE?
  3. Surround yourself with positivity. Research show we behave according to the inputs we receive every day. So, make sure you’re being fed the good stuff, not the bad.


Look, it’s just a fact: The power of belief cannot be overstated.


Henry Ford supposedly was the first person to say, “Whether you believe you can or cannot achieve something, you’re right.” But I first saw it on a sign at a putt-putt course. Seriously!


Anything that’s taken hold in the world like that MUST be true.


Believe in yourself. I already do.