How to Discover Your Negative Core Beliefs

Sleuth:  First Step to Changing Your Beliefs

Why would you want to discover and change your negative core beliefs?  Because your beliefs are what are driving your thoughts.  Your thoughts are driving your actions.  Your thoughts and actions are creating your life.

In short – because you know your beliefs are running your life, and you want a better life.

You want to be more conscious and in control of what you think, feel, say and do.

My intention with this article is to teach you the first step in the SWAP process to help you discover and change your negative core belief into beliefs that support your happiness, health and wealth.

SWAP stands for Sleuth, Warp, Alternative, Patrol.

It’s a process I designed to help you discover and transform negative or limiting beliefs into positive, empowering ones.

Why is Sleuthing Needed?

You may think it seems odd that you’d need special detecting methods to discover your beliefs.

Aren’t your beliefs obvious?

Actually, they’re mostly hidden from us.

We accept our beliefs as unquestioned truth.  This makes them so known that they are invisible.

They are like your most comfortable surroundings – so well known you no longer notice them.

The 2 Best Ways to Sleuth Out Your Negative Core Beliefs

Let’s explore how you Sleuth out the beliefs that are undermining your happiness, your energy, health, and wealth.

Don’t be surprised if you feel resistance about discovering your beliefs rising about now.  I’ve actually created a tapping script: How to Change Beliefs with EFT, to prepare you to help reduce that resistance and help you discover and change your beliefs.

EFT script to reduce resistance to discovering and changing beliefs.

There are many, many ways to discover the thousands (millions?) of beliefs active in your life.  (Here are some other ways to create your list of beliefs.)

But you don’t need to know dozens of methods, nor all your beliefs.

Just the beliefs that are keeping you from creating the life you want.

Method 1: Significant Events

To prepare to discover the beliefs formed in your significant events, take a piece of paper and create three columns.  (Or do like I did and create an Excel spreadsheet with three columns.)

Title the columns Stimulus, Beliefs and Vows

Your stimulus, in this case, will be an event . . . a memory of something that happened (usually upsetting).

Significant memories are the motherlode of beliefs and vows.  But don’t let my word “significant” throw you off.

If you remember it, it’s significant.  Even if consciously, you’re thinking it was no big deal.

Your conscious mind will try to convince you that the memories you recall are not significant.  Don’t listen!

If it pops into your mind when doing this exercise, there’s something to be discovered.  Write it down.

Remembering Events

When thinking of the memories to write, focus as young as you can.

Generally, the ones that are most powerful in creating those limiting beliefs are the ones that happened very young, before 6.  But certainly, significant events can happen at any age, so don’t limit yourself to just the youngest ones.

I just did this exercise and wrote 7 significant early memories.  They happened at the ages of 3-12.

Memories that caused my negative core beliefs











If any of your top memories include what I call Big T Trauma, I suggest you avoid doing this activity on them by yourself, unless you’ve done significant work on them with an EFT or Matrix Reimprinting professional.

You probably noticed that “Dad is murdered” is on my list.

That’s an example of a Big T Trauma.

Big T Traumas are things that involved abuse, violence, horror or terror.

Even though I didn’t  witnes the violence, it was still an obviously  horrific event.  I was  12 and it created traumatic emotions (and beliefs) that were stored for decades.

I’ve done a lot of work on that event over the years.  In just the last year, over 40 years after it happened, I released a lot more of the trauma around it, all in sessions with experienced EFT professionals.

If you do the activity I’m describing here on a traumatic memory that has not been cleared, you run the risk of re-traumatizing yourself, getting lost in it, swamped with emotion and actually worsening the effects.

So select the small t traumas (we all have plenty of those) to do this work on.

I feel safe listing my beliefs and vows around my dad’s murder, since I’ve done so much work – with professionals – around that issue.

If you haven’t done EFT with professionals – and lots of it – around your Big T Traumas, I recommend you leave them off your list.


Identifying List of Core Beliefs from Memories

Here are the steps:

1.  Recall your first small t trauma.

2.  Imagine what beliefs you may have created for yourself or life.

3.  Imagine what vows you might have formed from the event and beliefs.

Here’s an example of the beliefs and vows I formed from one of my earliest memories.  I was three and broke my sister’s watch.







You don’t need to analyze this too much or “think” too much about it.

Most likely, the first things that pop into your mind are the beliefs you created.  They may not be in your conscious awareness, but your unconscious is fully aware of them and has been acting on them ever since the event.


Now, let’s move on to the vows you made.

Vows are global decisions that you make about what you will always or will never do.

Again, these may not be conscious, but your unconscious knows.  So just let them pop to the surface of your awareness.

Here are the vows I suspect I made about breaking my sister’s watch.

Method 2: Goal Blockers

Here’s a great way to discover the beliefs that are interfering with your joy and fulfillment.

Think of a goal you’d like to achieve.  It could be anything from writing a book to losing 10 pounds to starting an online business.

Again, I want you to do this on paper (or on your computer).  Again,  make 3 columns:  Goal, I Can’t Because . . . and Belief.

Select a goal you’d like to achieve. Write that under Goal.

Now imagine accomplishing the goal.  If you can easily see yourself doing it, then nothing is blocking you and I suggest you go for it!

If, on the other hand, you do think of reasons why you can’t do it, write them under that heading.

Here’s my example, based on my goal of making $10,000 per month in my business.

Steps to Changing Your Beliefs

Then, looking at one reason why you can’t at a time, turn those into beliefs.

For example, my thought that I can’t earn $10,000 per month because it’s more than I’ve ever made, could indicate a variety of beliefs.  See how I filled out my chart.

Examples of core beliefs

Be a Sleuth!

This Sleuthing step is so vitally important to being able to make lasting change.  So I encourage you to spend some time on both of the methods I’ve given you.

And, if sleuthing is super fun for you, here are two more ways to add to your list of beliefs.

When you’ve done this activity, you’re ready for the next part – the fun part – which is Warping your beliefs and vows.

You’ll be using EFT and NLP to distort those limiting beliefs and constraining vows so you mind becomes confused about them.

This confused place is the perfect environment for planting new seeds. That’s the Alternative step. (I think it’s really fun!)

Final Assignment:

In the comments below, answer these questions:

1.  Tell us a title for one small t event that created limiting beliefs for you?

2. What are the limiting beliefs you formed?


1.  What is one of your goals?

2.  What can’t you do it?

3. What beliefs do your can’ts indicate?

To your unlimited self!


p.s. On Tuesday, September 27, I’ll be giving a free teleclass teaching the whole SWAP process of changing negative core beliefs.

My talk is part of a series given by my dear friend and colleague Daphne Cohn, the Pleasure Nutritionist.  When you sign up for Daphne’s Beach Party, you’ll be sent information about how to join my belief-changing class.

Sign up to listen live or to the recording here.

p.p.s. Here are all the posts in this series:

Intro to SWAP Method:  What are Core Beliefs and What Are Yours

EFT Script to Help You Let Go of Resistance to Change Beliefs:  How to Change Beliefs with EFT

Sleuth – SWAP #1:  How to Discover Your Negative Core Beliefs

More Sleuthing:  Creating Your List of Core Beliefs

Warp – Loosening the Roots of Your Beliefs:  How to Change Your Beliefs By Warping Them with EFT

Facebook Twitter Plusone Reddit Stumbleupon Email

Related posts:

About the Author

Natalie Hill is a Transformational Coach for women entrepreneurs. She loves empowering women to bust through their blocks so they can be who they were born to be. Contact Natalie at Google+

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }