“You must be the change you want to see in the world.” 

– Gandhi

Take a good look in the mirror.  Your reflection is all that’s required when it comes to understanding your self-concept.  Self-concept defined is everything you think and believe about yourself.  Self is the key word here! Don’t be fooled into thinking that you’ve been the sole architect of your self-concept (beliefs).  From the moment you took your first breathe, you’ve been exposed to cultural conditioning designed to label you as “normal” and expected to embrace whatever cards life has dealt you.

In his book Wishes Fulfilled, Dr. Wayne Dyer suggests we have more say over what happens in our life than we ever imagined.  He notes, “There’s a level of awareness available to you that you are probably unfamiliar with.  It extends upward and transcends the ordinary level of consciousness that you’re most accustomed to.  At this higher plane of existence, which you and every human being who has ever lived can access at will, the fulfillment of wishes is not only probable—it is guaranteed.” According to Dyer, all it takes is a willingness to change your self-concept from ordinary to extraordinary. “Ordinary implies that you fit in, study hard, follow the rules and take care of your obligations.  There’s nothing wrong with ordinary—it is perfectly fine—but if it’s not completely acceptable for you, extraordinary consciousness connects you to the invisible, boundless energy of your soul.

Expect to meet some resistance if you choose to alter your self-concept.  Many of us have attempted this enormous undertaking with   

New Year’s resolutions year after year.  Before deciding to change anything about your self-concept, Dyer says, “Think of yourself as an observer, contemplating and selecting thoughts that you choose from that never-ending stream of thoughts on your inner screen, 24/7/365. Every thought going by is an imprint on your concept of yourself.  I’m encouraging you to initiate a habit of choosing thoughts and ideas that support feeling good and powerful.”

Here are three suggestions from Dyer’s Wishes Fulfilled book:

*Redefine your self-concept by challenging everything that you’ve held to be true about yourself up until now.  Be open to examining everything you’ve previously thought limited you in any way.  Affirm: I place no limits and no restrictions on all that I intend to accomplish and become from here on in.

*Allow yourself to become aware of the nonphysical reality that you are a part of.  Utilize your faith in God.  Know that you can access guidance from those who’ve lived here before.  Spend time in meditation.

*Whenever you’re experiencing discomfort or sadness, rather than trying to change the thought behind your emotional state, instead just put it back onto the never-ending conveyor belt of thoughts, and then select a different thought.  Keep doing this until you’ve selected a thought that allows you to feel good, and you’re no longer condemning yourself for creating unhappy thoughts.  

Dyer relates, “This is how you begin a new process to change your self-concept.  You accept as irrevocable that it is not you setting the stream of thoughts into motion, and that stopping thinking isn’t possible at this stage of your evolution.  At this stage, the essence of your being is to observe, contemplate, and then choose the thoughts and ideas that support feeling good and powerful.” 

When we embrace this extraordinary concept, we can stop blaming others for our shortcomings and start taking responsibility for our life by changing our self-concept.  Change is good for the soul!


– Karen Restivo is a Life & Communication Coach and owner of SerenityMatagorda Isle. You can learn more about Karen by visiting her online at or emailing her at

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