Inside of us lives a conviction, or belief, that is as old as we are. Whether it was given to us or we developed it through influence doesn’t really matter. What matters is that we have it and that most of us are either unaware of it, or we are not using it to build a better life through meaningful work.
A core belief is something that can neither be explained nor argued about. It is something that is so intricately linked to our being that we have to simply take it as is and defend it with fervor. Steve Jobs never knew where his obsession for ‘thinking different(ly)’ came from. But fortunately he was aware of it and also capable of turning it into work. All the people we tend to honor and admire for their great impact and their almost obsessive focus on creating value from nothing- whether they are in politics, economics, humanitarian aid or the arts- share this: awareness of and alignment with their core belief.
You might be asking yourself, how do I discover my core belief? The answer is not that fancy: by looking closely. We each have a story from the past. There are many moments which shaped us, intrigued us, impacted us. The moments where we feel we gained confidence and growth are the ones that are infused with our core belief because a core belief is the way we see the world: The way we believe we can grow, the way we seek to contribute and the experiences we seek to have. A core belief covers all three areas. Can you look back and identify those moments inside of your own story? Did something happen that propelled your understanding of growth? Were you at some point triggered more than usual to defend something you believed in with such fervor that you had to either walk away or crush the other party with your sheer conviction?
There are many faces to our core belief. But a relentless burning desire to defend it is always a part of it. While many acquired beliefs can be diluted, discussed and sometimes even lost, the core belief survives every impact because it is embedded in our DNA. Those that are in full awareness of their core belief act from it. They build things that matter on a foundation of total self accountability and responsibility, which creates trust in those that decide to work with you and buy from you.
Remember, all you have to do to discover your core belief is look closely. It presents itself in your daily life more often than you might think.