Letters To Seneca – Letter 16

Dear Seneca,

The process of challenging myself is a habit I’ve cultivated over time, but only recently have I expanded this habit to challenging myself internally.

Over the years I’ve built my ability to physically, intellectually, and socially challenge myself. Each challenge has a set goal and timeline of when it should be achieved, which makes it easy to see the path between points “A” and “B”. In the last couple of months, I’ve started to challenge myself internally, pushing back against the steady beliefs I’ve held for many years.

This form of challenge has been more difficult than other forms. My process is simple. Whenever I have a belief that continuously crops up during conversation externally or internally I begin to ask myself “Is this true?”. Instead of simply asking myself the question at the moment, I also incorporate the challenging process in my morning writing time. Placing my beliefs on paper and slowly dissecting them helps me dissociate from that beliefs.

I start by stating the belief in some detail, then I begin to ask myself questions about the belief, preferably speaking from a counter perspective. At the same time, I’ll throw in a series of “why” questions, trying to uncover the core of “why” this belief exists and where it came from. If you want to get a small taste of what that looks like, I recommend referring to letter 5.

While asking all of these questions I may type out a few answers, but most of the answering and additional thought is happening internally. For me, this process has helped shift a few of the base assumptions I’ve had throughout the last couple of years.

There are still many beliefs I would like to flesh out, but we’ll leave that for another day.