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Are You Happy with the Way You Are: Maybe it is Your Personal Philosophy or lack of

Updated on February 6, 2020
Dr Bill Tollefson profile image

My passion is to inspire and coach people to achieve what they want to get out of life.

Are you Happy with Yourself?

"Discover the root cause of your unhappiness. The content of your personal philosophy is keeping you unhappy and stuck. Shift the content of your personal philosophy and your mindset and identity will immediately change and your heart will be set free."

My passion and intention over the last seventeen years were to find a way to help individuals to free themselves from their past and start anew. I achieved it by discovering what is keeping stuck in life. The content of thoughts, beliefs, values, and expectations formed while growing up is what hampers growth and keeps them unhappy, unfulfilled and scared to move forward.

I wanted to answer a question that I was asked by my clients for over a decade "What is holding me back from changing and stuck in bad situations?” At the time, I did not have an answer, now I do. The answer is what is contained in their personal philosophy (aka identity or belief system).

Are you happy with yourself?

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Personal Philosophy is the theory for Human Identity

The key to change is based on understanding Personal Philosophy
The key to change is based on understanding Personal Philosophy | Source

Personal Philosophy is Important

In Psychology, personality structure is very complicated and confusing for most laypeople but also for a lot of professionals. I wanted to be able to answer the question that is asked of me all the time "what is stopping me from changing?"

So I dedicated my work and myself to find an answer. I worked many long hours with clients, got more education, and went over current research in many fields in different disciplines to gain more knowledge to answer the question. I also reviewed all my notes from hundreds of lectures I gave as well as groups I conducted over 20 years.

I really think I have discovered the answer. The answer was in the embedded content in their mind code located in his or her subconscious mind. It was the mind code feeding the 4 key elements of personal philosophy that governs what the person could do or not do, feel or not feel, what to think or not think. These 4 elements I termed Personal Philosophy and are the basis of human identity.

The objective was to find a way to convey the answer in a common-sense manner and produce a method off of it to help people make a positive change in his or her life.

What is Personal Philosophy?

What is your personal philosophy? I had asked that question many times to many professionals. No one seemed to be able to answer it. Personal philosophy content is not social conversation material. Most people do not just sit around discussing their own deep personal views and beliefs about themselves to others. Personal philosophy is a subject that is rarely addressed, yet personal philosophy is an integral part of how humans function in their lives.

Personal philosophy is a personal experience, a way of life. It is an overall mindset that sets human attitude on all things in self as well as life. It produces and directs how a person reacts internally and externally. It governs how one interprets life situations. It is a complex subject. Personal Philosophy directs, governs and influences all human actions, beliefs, emotions, thoughts, and reactions.

Let me share a story of a woman to help you can understand better the concept of personal philosophy. She was facing extreme problems and her life was becoming unhappy, stuck and dysfunctional. She had just gone through her third divorce and felt empty, lost and abandoned. She described her last marriage relationship as “he kept me trapped and I was his emotional hostage. I was stuck and unable to make a decision on what to do. I lost who I was and continually tried to correct my thoughts, behaviors, and feelings. I felt like I had no control. He constantly said it was my fault and I was the reason for our bad marriage and his unhappiness. I gave in to his constant berating of me thinking he must be right because I didn't even like myself.” In the course of coaching her, she blurted out “I guess I do not deserve any better. I must be unlovable”. Once pointed out, she realized that she had been repeating the same pattern in all of her marriages and relationships. 'I was taught my whole life that I was not worthy."

When asked “what is your personal philosophy”, she stopped, thought for a while, a glaze came over her eyes and she stated, “I have no clue”. She had no idea what she believed in or stood for in herself or just plain life.


As a human grows up, the human brain accepts and records a lot of self-messages. These self-messages include beliefs, concepts, expectations, ideals, loyalties, principles, requirements, rules, standards, and values. Over time these self-messages form in the subconscious mind without conscious awareness of whether the self-messages are right or wrong, true or false. The person does not know whether these self-messages are his or her own or from others.

What makes up a person’s personal philosophy?

I would like to share with you my theory of personal philosophy. Personal philosophy is the accumulation of all accepted beliefs, concepts, expectations, ideas, laws, loyalties, principles, requirements, rules, standards and values. Personal philosophy is the foundation of identity.

I believe that personal philosophy is what drives, motivates and influences your reactions (feelings, thoughts, and actions) to self, others and life situations. Personal philosophy is the essence of our life stories. Self-messages are triggered by life events, surface into the conscious mind and then manifest into our behavior, emotions, and reactions. It may also be defined as layers of accumulated information of recorded excerpts of a human’s experiences; a formed belief (aka self-messages) about self. Personal philosophy is a person's intellectual and emotional history after being filtered through perception.

4 tips on why you are the way you are.

There are 4 tips on the elements which make up your personal philosophy.

Tip #1 core beliefs - beliefs with associated emotion you form about yourself during each life event your experience,

Tip #2 core values - worth or value you placed on each core belief,

Tip #3 programming - statements you hear in your head which validates each formed core belief, and core value

Tip #4 core expectations - expectations you accept that were taught or given to you about what you should or should not do, be or not be, achieve or not achieve.

Every 4 levels store formed "self-messages" (core beliefs) you accumulated over a lifetime. These self-messages are recorded and embedded in your mind on each personal philosophy level.

Collected data at each key level is stored during each situation you experience during a lifetime. Of course, you are not aware of what your subconscious mind is recognizing and accepting or the future impact. These 4 levels will govern and influence all your behaviors, emotions, thoughts and reactions on how you respond in each daily experience.

Internal Structure

In an attempt to envision how the keys are structured and interact with each other think of a tower. All the levels are stacked on top of each other.

The base or foundation of the whole personal philosophy is the core belief. Core beliefs are the first and most important level. Personal philosophy ends at the top with core expectations. Each key layer interacts with the others vertically.

Life event and their associated perceptions are filtered through each layer downward ending at the foundation or the bottom. A life situation will trigger a core belief, ascends until it surfaces into the conscious mind and causes a behavior, emotion, thought or reaction. The core belief then governs and influences all actions, feelings, and thoughts, therefore, ruling the reaction to that particular life situation.

The core belief is what drives and motivates you to do a certain behavior, to think positively or negatively and to feel a particular emotion in any given moment. So how you function in your life depends totally on the content embedded in each key element. These keys can be either a self-limiting barrier or a self-motivator depending on the content or mind code.

Gaining enlightenment into your personal philosophy can be helpful to you in understanding what is keeping you stuck or unfulfilled and what you need to shift in order to attain your desires.

© 2011 Bill Tollefson


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