Having ideals and beliefs – at what expense to the body?

by Cherise Holt, Nurse, Australia

When I was 20 years old, I graduated as a nurse and began to work in a Rehabilitation unit, in a major city hospital. On any shift I would be allocated to approximately 7 patients, all of whom were recovering from surgical procedures, injuries and various illnesses & diseases. They all varied in the amount of support they (and their carers) needed from me, physically, mentally and emotionally.

I worked shift work, usually days, afternoons and weekends and it was not uncommon to work 7 days without a break or have very irregular shifts. I frequently worked until 11pm at night and would then start another shift beginning at 6.30am the next morning. I used to think I had barely enough time to drive home and sleep, let alone take time to wind down properly or bring true quality to my relationship with me (or anyone else!).

I worked hard and I would tell anyone that I thoroughly enjoyed my job. I loved talking to the patients, although found it difficult with those that wanted more of my attention or more solutions from me than I felt I could give. I liked providing care for them, however found that the physical tasks I was doing for them, even the basics of daily care, was becoming tiring on my body.

At age 20, I was already feeling drained by my career; how could this be?

At age 21, I had a serious lower back injury and was unable to keep working, although I had pushed myself to try. I found myself in a young body with limited mobility; requiring rehabilitation, physiotherapy, day procedures and narcotics for the excruciating pain I was experiencing – in fact, I was looking not too dissimilar to any one of my patients.

I held the belief that I was going to get better and return to work as soon as possible, but I had a lot of fear for the physical pain or damage that I could possibly do to myself again. I discounted any thought (or suggestion) that I could find work anywhere else, because in my mind I had committed myself to returning to my workplace and simply picking up where I left off.

As the many months went on, I continued to experience great pain and felt stuck within my own choices. I had placed so much pressure on myself to get back to where I was that I was not listening to my own body and what it actually felt it could do. I began to feel more worthless in my self because I wasn’t able to work and reach my goal; hardness on me that I can see now was only serving to further inhibit my own recovery.

After two full years of not working I had a moment, a communication with myself where I questioned my held beliefs – who says you have to take your body back to that specific workplace? Are you really letting anyone (including yourself) down by moving on?

With this simple conversation, I let go of a belief that I had created and had held in my own head for a very long time, and with my renouncing of its controlling hold, I just let it go!

Within a short time I was applying for new jobs and found myself in a perfect position within a day hospital setting. The shifts supported me, as did the physical workload and my colleagues, but most importantly I began to uncover just how detrimental and stunting a held belief really can be! It’s a disease in our bodies.

When we invest in ideals and beliefs, we are seeking outside of ourselves for the right or should thing to do, and we can get caught up in pleasing others too. In this we contract ourselves away from the natural expression and personal rhythm that we can otherwise live our lives in and from. The toll that this way of holding back takes on our bodies is enormous (and my back is a true testament!).

These days I am SO grateful that my back and my physical body communicates with me the way that it does, reminding me that when I honour me and my body and don’t compromise myself for ideals, beliefs, pushing, trying, or other people, my body is left free to move in the flowing freedom and beauty that is my own rhythm. On the flip side, when I don’t honour what I feel and what is true for me, my body tells me through an ache, pain or tightness straight away, reminding me that I carry a wisdom far greater than any ideal and when I truly listen I am brought back to the truth of what I know and how to be in the way that I live.

Forever inspired by the work of Serge Benhayon & Universal Medicine, supporting me to gather the pieces of the puzzle that collectively bring true medicine and the way that I live back together again.


Read more:

  1. Work is medicine 
  2. Self-care at work
  3. Are we building our body image, or, is our image building our body? 

836 thoughts on “Having ideals and beliefs – at what expense to the body?

  1. Remaining resistant to hearing the messages of our body, clearly delays the recovery of our health.
    Nevertheless, whatever we choose, there is always so much love embracing us until the revealing moment of our surrender.. respectfully awaiting for it to happen.

  2. It continues to amaze how we insist after having an illness or disease that we want to be able to resume life where it was left off before the issue arose; without understanding that this may not be what our body is calling for.
    I knew someone who had a cancer diagnosis and after the operations and even during the follow up treatments continued to work and behave as before and not listen to what their body was needing as support for the monumental experience they were going through. So it is with great interest Cherise to read that you understood with hind sight that placing pressure on yourself to get back to ‘normal’ as soon as possible does inhibit your recovery; this makes sense to me that it would.

  3. Cherise, I loved your sharing as I work in the health care system too and the work is often demanding on our bodies. And once upon a time I was one of the statistics on the verge of leaving the profession and in fact I hated my job. But at the end of the day, we have a choice, to be part of the statistics or go to work and offer our services to the professional or be the casualty of the profession.

    We need to take care of ourselves more and more and it begins with us first. When we take care of ourselves first, then everything else around us will take care of itself.

  4. Our beliefs are what cripple us. When we are invested in it, it’s impossible to see the obvious that we could easily relate to otherwise.

    1. OMG Fumiyo, our beliefs not only ‘cripple us’, they hold us prisoners in the illusion, it separates us from everyone. With so many beliefs around us such as religion, culture, food, etc, it’s no wonder there are so many divisions between us.

      It’s time to wake up to how we are living.

      1. Gosh I so agree with you both Fumiyo and Shushila from my own personal experience I know that the ideals and beliefs I held and still hold keep me in a prison of my own making. When I find a held belief or ideal and work on letting it go, my whole body feels so much lighter.

  5. It’s a really good example of how a belief or way of thinking can get in the way of honouring what’s truly needed, and the complexity our beliefs and ideals can bring into life, instead of the simplicity of responding to what’s needed.

  6. When we get caught up in our own beliefs we are like little hamsters on the wheel going round and round and doing nothing but getting dizzy and pretending everything is ok.

  7. When we hold onto an ideal or belief we can force ourselves to live in a way that is not true for us as we are governed by the belief and not what is being asked of us. This way of being happened to me recently where I placed getting work and money before the relationship with self and where I am at. I had become ‘hooked’ into the belief that I was holding in my body and it took a diagnoses from the doctor to stop the momentum, take stock and let go of the belief. I am no longer attached to the belief and boy do I feel different – light, connected to myself and expanded.

  8. “I began to uncover just how detrimental and stunting a held belief really can be! It’s a disease in our bodies” and when we let go of a belief we can feel a freedom in our body as one more knot is untied.

  9. Such an obvious communication from your body, yet even when we get a message as clear as this, that the way we are working or living is not working for us and is having a detrimental effect on our body, we can still be stubbornly holding on to our ideas about how we ‘should be’ or what we ‘should be doing’. Amazing to read how quickly you recovered and bounced back to normal life after you’d dropped the pressure you were putting on yourself and allowed yourself to let go, accepting your situation and yourself.

  10. Our bodies are extraordinary in the way that they communicate to us the bigger picture of what is going on. By bringing our awareness to this we are able to see beyond the physical and understand what lies at the root of our pain or discomfort, and we then have the opportunity and if we so choose, the grace to deal with it.

  11. I had roughly a 2 year experience of what ideals and beliefs can do to my health when I hold onto them and not listen to my body. I kept asking my body throughout about leaving, and when it said yes I still held in against my bodies wishes. The results were not pretty physically, mentally and emotionally but once I finally called it all off it felt like every cell sighed with relief.

  12. “ I questioned my held beliefs – who says you have to take your body back to that specific workplace? Are you really letting anyone (including yourself) down by moving on?” – When we get caught up in our own beliefs we miss the opportunities that are there for us.

  13. The moment you move on you pull everyone you´ve been in contact/ connection with. It is a deep hideous belief that we leave people behind, when we move on. We are all interconnected and even though we might not see what effect our moving on has with our eyes, we all have a great impact on everyone else all the time.

  14. “When we invest in ideals and beliefs, we are seeking outside of ourselves for the right or should thing to do, and we can get caught up in pleasing others too” – so true, and I am finding more and more how sneaky and insidious these things are. I really didn’t realise how sympathetic I was.

  15. Isn´t it amazing how the body communicates with us ? It is like your best friend who would not accept less than a true relationship. How often do we dismiss the loving signs the body is sending us, that we are betraying and not honouring the relationship it offers.

  16. Ideals and beliefs keep us in the our minds instead of feeling what is our true next impulse in our life. It is like a brake, that constantly brakes, whenever we would actually move forward and free ourselves from any outside taken on truths, instead of living our own innate one. There must be a lot of power coming in living and connecting to the truth that is always on offer in us ! ?

  17. Well said, beliefs are a disease of the body. The move our bodies in ways that are not natural to us, causing a dis-ease.

  18. It is not life that makes it hard for us, it is our choices that make life hard for us. We always have the choice of how we respond to a situation and we can always choose to leave situations that are not loving or supportive. We just have to learn though that we can do this when it feels right and not feel like we have to stay forever.

  19. It is great to know that there is a wisdom to the language that your body speaks, and that this simple communication is actually what can be the most supportive for how to live through life.

  20. Our body is always telling us what’s going on, we just have to learn how to listen to it – and realise that there is a deeper layer wanting to be felt, acknowledged and addressed – and that there is a correlation between what our body is showing up and how we are living.

  21. It pays to keep checking in with our body as the body is the marker of all Truth (as related by Serge Benhayon).

  22. There have been articles in the press recently about how the current treatments for back pain are not effective, so this is a much needed conversation and if people are open to exploring their own ideals and beliefs, then there is the possibility for change and becoming more productive.

  23. I love how this blog exposes the physical impact of ideals and beliefs and how stuck we can get on a particular path. As soon as we open ourselves up to feeling what is true for us we are shown where to go. Learning to listen to my body is an ongoing process and after having years of lower back pain I now have much freer movement and am much more likely to respond to my body when it lets me know that I am pushing it too hard.

  24. Cherise, what you are sharing here feels really important; having ideals and beliefs can keep us stuck and stop us from moving on and from evolving.

  25. Our body tells us a great deal depending on whether we are prepared to listen to it and act in a way that supports it, or disregard what is being communicated and override it, and if we continually override our body, we will at some point come to a stop through illness or disease because we have been running our body against its natural rhythm.

  26. Ideals and beliefs are unrecognisable until we have a reflection from another of what it is to live without the imposition of these. Serge Benhayon offers such a reflection and the magnificence and gloriousness we have live in harmony with – it is already within, awaiting re-claiming as we expose and heal the ideals and beliefs.
    “When we invest in ideals and beliefs, we are seeking outside of ourselves for the right or should thing to do, and we can get caught up in pleasing others too”.

  27. “When we invest in ideals and beliefs, we are seeking outside of ourselves for the right or should thing to do, and we can get caught up in pleasing others too.” This leads to being on a treadmill and building such resentment in our bodies that we end up incredibly sick.

  28. This is such a great reminder. Thank you, Cherise. So true – when I get caught in what I should do, trying to do the right thing etc. my body is left behind and I keep wondering what that should and might look like and whether I have got it right or not, and I am never good enough. But really, the only thing I am in charge of is to take the best care of this body as much as I can so that the quality I live in is guaranteed.

  29. Wow love Cherise that you dropped that ideal – amazing how we can carry a belief around with us for so long, and wow the freshness we can feel when we finally let them drop. Ideals and beliefs are so heavy they weigh us down and can take us way of track – always better to be open to what life has to offer that way we don’t miss out on the magic.

  30. There is a belief in nursing (and outside of nursing) that unless you are working (slogging it out) on a ward in a hospital, working shift work, then you’re not really nursing. Whilst we know that nurses work in all sorts of environments, the picture of nursing in the ward is a very strong one. This belief or consciousness is a seemingly difficult one to step away from, but its not really for nursing is about people its not about working on a ward in a hospital. So really we can nurse anywhere.

  31. Truth requires no belief for it is a quality that is known right in the very core of our being. Acquiring beliefs is very damaging for our health and well-being as they block the pathway of the truth that lives deep within us being able to express out. Taking on a belief in this sense is akin to taking poison, as your experience so clearly demonstrates Cherise.

  32. Last weeks I realised I have been ignoring the wisdom of my body and tried to hold on on certain beliefs I had about my job and me personal, reading your blog I learned a lot and it inspires me to make different choices and to start to truly honour my body.

  33. So much to learn reading these blogs and comments, I am really appreciating that today. An offering from God for us all to connect to, learn from, reflect with, and evolve with. Today I connected to how I want to please others and the dis-harmony that creates in my own body.

  34. Cherise, this is so true, thank you for writing this, I find it deeply supportive; ‘When we invest in ideals and beliefs, we are seeking outside of ourselves for the right or should thing to do, and we can get caught up in pleasing others too.’ Having started a new job recently I can feel how if I try and do the ‘right’ thing, prove myself and do not value myself and my natural expression, then I get really tired, I am learning to trust and to be myself and this feels great when I work this way – much less tiring.

  35. What I am finding more and more is that the quality of how we work, move and live outside our workplaces is just as important as when we are at work.

    1. Very true. There is no ‘off’ switch to our expression. We are continually expressing no matter where we are and what we are doing. So if we find ourselves ‘switching off’ when the job is done, we may well need to question the quality of what we express from this point.

  36. I have found that when we let go of ideals and beliefs life can take us in a completely different direction, and if we had stuck to the ideals and beliefs we would have missed out on so much.

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