Things You Wish You Knew @ 17 #5

Everything you learn(ed) from your parent(s) may be wrong.

Bountiful research exists on how we become the individuals we are. Believe it or not, most, if not all, of your personality traits, beliefs, traditions, strengths and behavior were developed by the age of 18. There have been many debates about whether nature (your genes) or nurture (your upbringing) has more influence. Some research suggests that both play a major in your development, and I buy into this theory.

You may notice that you have many of the same gestures or thought processes as your parent—these characteristics are nature. You also may notice that you’ve taken on some, or many, of their behaviors, such as how to socialize, how to express anger, how to dress appropriately, as well as different manners and values—these are examples of nurture.

Let’s dive deeper here. Let’s say that you have a strong tendency, or need, to control others or to have the last word. Perhaps your form of communication leads you towards always getting into arguments with other people. Maybe you’re never satisfied with the performance of others and you always think it would be easier if you did it yourself. (It’s actually not, but that’s another topic!). Maybe you’re always anxious or nervous, or you burden yourself with the highest expectations of yourself. Maybe you eat out every day, spend a lot of money, shop all the time and have way too much “stuff.” All of these pieces make up who you are and they are usually learned behaviors that have been mirrored from some social influence in your life. Or you learned them as a protective mechanism for your internal beliefs.

Now let’s look at the other side of the equation: the reality that simply because you learned these behaviors from your parents doesn’t make them acceptable, appropriate or healthy. You’ve learned them and whichever ones you don’t like, you can unlearn them—starting today!

On belief that I had taken on form my upbringing was that the only way to communicate was through sarcasm and anger. It took me nearly half my life to recognize that my tone was sharp and people often perceived me as always being angry. That certainly was not the person I felt like inside, or that I wanted to be. To learn how to communicate effectively, I had to un-learn what I had been taught and believed.

I had many more beliefs to un-learn. I lived under the impression that I was a respected and capable person, but that was only because I could achieve anything for anyone

Everything you thought you knew is wrong

Courtesy of

else. That was part of the identity I had forged form my past. For years, I lived in a dark, lonely place where I always seemed to be searching for something. In reflection, that something was my own identity. Also, because I didn’t have anyone cheering me on to pursue my dreams while growing up, I didn’t believe I could have real dreams of my own—and go after them. After much floundering I un-learned these beliefs and built a life that is truly my won, which includes finding work with meaning and purpose.

So now I’m here to assure you that even if no one believed in yourself in the past, you can believe in yourself now. And if you don’t like the ideas, rituals and beliefs that you were raised with, you can change them. Life is short; your journey starts today. What are you waiting for to make your life a life full of becoming you and making every day the best day it can be?


Just for Today – When the lights go out, can you look inside of yourself and be happy with your behavior that you are creating now, not the behavior that you learned back then? Can you believe in yourself?

Choice Wheel by Ginger RossThe Combination Notebook:

Choices – Life is short. You Can create your Past and You are defined by your choices. #Be your own authority #Be your own advocate.

Perception – Open your mind to other possibilities regarding beliefs and behaviors. Often we are unaware of the lies we live with, even the ones we tell ourselves.

Beliefs – Question their validity and reality, especially if they seem to belong to someone else!


Expectations – Let go of them

Beliefs – Question their validity and reality

Energy – Choose the type of energy you want to absorb and perspire



Posted in Living Life On Purpose, The Combination, Things You Wish You Knew @ 17, What Are You Waiting For.

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