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How serious is the impact of I am not happy with myself?

the mask and limiting belief of being unhappy
the mask and limiting belief of being unhappy

I think we could agree that we all have some “bagage” with us, with it I mean past experiences and memories that are not always nice, or living with limiting beliefs that are putting ourselves down like “I am not good enough”, “I am not being smart enough“, “I cannot do that” or I am not happy with my body”… to mention some of them.

Even though I do understand it as being a therapist and coach, I find it amazing the number of limiting believes we collect during our lifetimes and address as unchangeable. I will not say I am free of them, but still :-).

I think we could agree that the only effect of having them on our shoulders and carry them with us is they contribute to a lower self-esteem, and a messed up self confidence, and therefore we live not our full potential and smile less and enjoy life less.

Somewhere we life in less happiness and have less success in life that we could have and in the worst case contribute to unhealthy habits and addictions.

How serious is the impact of I am not happy with myself? According to research, more than 90% of girls – 15 to 17 years – want to change at least one aspect of their physical appearance, with body weight ranking the highest.

For women the statistics are even more shocking: 97% of women will be cruel about their own bodies.

The results of having a low self-esteem are shocking: 75% of the girls with low self-esteem engage in negative and potentially harmful activities, such as disordered eating, cutting, bullying, smoking or drinking. By other hand, girls with a high self-esteem will engage in these activities only in 25% of the cases.

And although these numbers are from women, I dare to say that they could be extrapolated to men too.

The pressure on men is increasing, the old way of being a men is not accepted anymore and therefore, we men, engage more and more in negative self talk and lower self esteem as a result.

And when we think this is only in the personal space, we are wrong!

The statistics (Johnson and Blom 2007) in the work environment are also not something to be happy about.

In companies, studies show that limiting believes, negative self talk have major impact on the profit of companies. To be concrete, the loss in profit is in the range from 5 - 35%

Contributors to this decrease of profit may vary from increased sickness leave, to missing changes in R&D, sales and competition as creativity and drive is highly effected negatively by limiting beliefs and negative self talk.

For the employees living with limiting believes it has a major impact on their careers: less career changes, not being selected for special projects, and a lower engagement based on not utilising their full potential.

The good new is that everything we learned is also unlearnable, the popular saying of "we can rewire our brain” is really true!.

The key question is: “how to do that?”

We can follow the advices, from “do not think about it, "say to yourself positive affirmations”, “act as if you can”, “find your power pose”, “channel your Heroes”… etc., and although they work, they are extremely hard to implement and therefore fail in 95% of the cases.

Why are they so hard to implement? All these learned limiting beliefs are installed as feelings in our Heart and/or Gut Brain (also called our subconscious) and feelings do not communicate with words. Furthermore, those two brains do not listen too much to what we think. Our feelings are stronger than our thoughts.

In other words, doing our best consciously to change a feeling is like keeping our eyes open and resist to blink. Just try it! It will not work.

If you ever have done meditation, you probably experienced that even if your objective is to have an empty mind, thoughts just pop in. Well, those thoughts are directed from the “unresolved feelings” you have. Everything that is not resolved stays in one of your two brains in your body, just come aware when you feel that you did not do something, where do you feel that? Yes, in your gut if it connects with fear and in your heart if it connects with guilt.

So if “thinking positive" does not work, because it is not sustainable, what does work?

Actually everything that communicates in the language of the Heart or Gut Brain, works. Hence, the subconscious mind.

When you play happy music, start singing with the lyrics and dance I promise you within 3 minutes your bad mood is gone.

Techniques from NLP, Bodywork, Constellations, and Hypnotherapy are actually the most successful in achieving that change.

The reason is that those ones communicate in the language of the body, the language of the Heart and Gut brain, the language of subconscious mind.

Are you curious to know what can be the impact of working with the scope of the 3 Brains theory and mentioned techniques? I invite you to listen to James video

You could experience the same as a result after following this training.

Would you like to experience by yourself if this is something for you or learning Hypnotherapy.

We designed a 2 day Hypnotherapy workshop that provides you with concrete tools and techniques you could apply the day after and it is a great pre-start for the training that will be starting in September. The NLP component will be done in October.

2 day certificate

Wishing you a great day!

Christoffel Sneijders

Clinical Hypnotherapist/Psychotherapist,

Professor at the IE Business School

Executive Coach


1. Real Girls, Real pressure, a National Rapport on the site of self esteem June 2008 and Glamour, research 2017

3. Contingent self-esteem and burnout Rachael Tripney 2008 Malardalen University Stockholm

4. Use It Or Lose It: The Science Behind Self-Confidence, Margie Warrell, Forbes magazine 2015

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