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"Seeing is not always believing."

Truth - in accordance with fact or reality Belief - an acceptance that a statement is true or that something exists Now, right from the get, know that this month's endurance newsletter is not intended to change your mind about anything. All I ever ask is to have an OPEN mind to acknowledge possibilities exist. Truths (as far as us humans are aware) are factual and real. Essentially, we could argue even the most hardcore truths are not necessarily true. For example, is it true that it is 2022? Yes . . . as far as our understanding knows. However, we created our version of "time", yet we don't even know what time truly is. So, there could be an argument that even this is a belief, not necessarily factual. However, for our purposes, a truth is in accordance to our understanding of facts and reality. Examples of truths (according to our understanding) may include:

1. Pressure - Stress is an inevitable part of life and a common universal life truth. It can mean different things to different people, but no one can avoid it.

2. Hello, Goodbye - We all arrive on this planet, and we are all leaving it one day.

3. All You Need Is Love - Regardless of who you are or where you may be, love is an emotion that we all want to experience.

4. Social Experiment - It is in the vested interest of societal structures to have people that follow the rules and do as they are told.

5. Misery Loves Company - Cruel people who criticize and spread negative energy do this from the toxicity of negativity that they have within themselves.

6. Reality Check - None of us experiences reality directly. What we experience is our version of reality through our own perceptual filters.

Having a strong internal belief system is integral to who we are as individuals. Just remember that they are YOUR BELIEFS. It is also BELIEFS that have caused most of our conflicts throughout history . . . not necessarily factual truths. But . . .

Guess what? The thing about beliefs is that we all (humans anyways) have them. This core belief system drives every single action we take. The tricky part is that we often view our BELIEFS as TRUTHS. Unfortunately, these two don't necessarily coincide. The rub here is that these perceived TRUTHS often create boundaries/limitations on living our best and healthiest life. In fact, many of our beliefs are buried so deep into our subconscious, we may not even realize they're present.

Right now our brains are being bombarded with so much conflicting information (much of which is propaganda), we become confused, mistrusting and cynical. It's hard to decipher who or what to BELIEVE in! While I can't help you in that capacity, I can assist in helping you reboot your BELIEF system so to speak.

First and foremost, if in the core of your existence, you know something is off or wrong, you may want to trust your gut. It doesn't mean your gut is right, but often our intuition gives us clues, whether we want to BELIEVE them or not.

Since this was based on the current political bombardment. Let's stick with that for our work.

1. Think about your own current political BELIEFS.

*Now, although we may experience these BELIEFS as TRUTHS, they are nothing more than our own mental creations. The good news is that since we created these "TRUTHS", we can also decide on which ones best match our vision of a successful and enduring political landscape/country.

2. You want to know something else about our BELIEFS? In reality, these are just our very own strongly held opinions. They are not factual, as anything opinion-based is not.

--Let's look at this from a simply racing perspective . . .

*Before my first Ironman, I'm sure I BELIEVED "there's no way I can swim 2.4-miles!" (In my head this was a TRUTH, but it was not factual). If it were, I wouldn't have finished 4-Ironman races. What I did do was adapt and strengthen what needed to be improved upon to reach a new BELIEF, which became a new TRUTH. I can indeed swim 2.4-miles!

Honestly, the best way to check yourself regarding BELIEFS versus TRUTHS is "The Ladder of Inference". This wonderful tool, developed by Chris Argyris, assists us in observing how our BELIEFS are formed and in turn, why we act in the manner we do.

*See below for a pictorial of how this plays out regarding the political landscape.

The first step in reaching clarity is to be aware and honest with yourself. Secondly, you need to know the difference between your BELIEFS and TRUTHS. Please remember just because something matches your internal value system DOES NOT make it TRUTH. If nothing else, one may want to look at history and review one of Joseph Goebbels (Adolf Hitler's chief officer of propaganda) most famous lines: "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it." I'd let that one soak in for a bit. If we plan on enduring as a strong, democratic nation, keep that BELIEF from our history, in your mind. We have the power to not allow such BELIEFS to become a horrendous TRUTH! In closing, let's ponder (in my BELIEF), the greatest song lyric ever written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney . . . "Living is easy with eyes closed; misunderstanding all you see."

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