We will open the tap to our creativity, energy and resources.
Does this mean that we will produce the exact result we envisioned? Not all the time.
Still, having a belief of possibility will allow us to produce results far beyond what we can achieve than compared to having no belief to begin with.
Our beliefs not only affect our performance and results, they also affect the people we interact with as well.
As a teacher, parent or boss, the beliefs you have about your students, children and employees will affect how you treat them, how they respond, ultimately resulting in their performance.
Have you ever heard of the Pygmalion effect? This psychological phenomenon was first presented by Robert Merton, a professor of sociology at Columbia University in 1957.
It is about how our expectations of other people can create a self-fulfilling prophecy.
The study involved a teacher who was instructed to teach a new class of gifted students for the school year.
In truth, these students had been tested and found to be of low I.
Moreover, they had behavioral problems.
Sure enough, when she started teaching, the students started misbehaving not caring to learn or respond.
Because she believed they were students with high IQ, she figured that she was the cause of the problem, not the students! She started to take responsibility for their misbehavior and disinterest in learning.
She reflected that it could be due to her teaching style being too boring not stimulating enough to capture the attention of these gifted, demanding children.
Experimenting and changing the way she taught, she started to encourage them, arouse their curiosity, challenging them with games and activities, nurturing them along the whole process.
The more she treated them like gifted students, the more the students responded.
At the end of the school year, the academic grades of the students jumped tremendously.
And when retested, their IQs measured a 20-30 point increase on average.
She literally created gifted students! (Think of how supposedly slow learners languishing and underperforming because of uninspiring teachers?) In his work called 'Social Theory and Social Structure', Merton said the phenomenon occurs when "a false definition of the situation evokes a new behavior which makes the original false conception come true.
" In other words, once an expectation is set, even if it isn't accurate, we tend to act in ways consistent with that expectation.
Often and surprisingly, the result is that the expectation, as if by magic, comes true.
At the same time, if we believe that a particular goal or desire is beyond our reach we shut out all possibility of ever achieving it.
Choose empowering beliefs, beliefs that will drive us forward calling forth the inexhaustible resources we all possess, turning on the tap of our potential power.