I have been thinking a lot about the idea of our personal stories and how they inform our actions and relationships. While they can be quite pleasant and helpful, many also can be detrimental to our health and well being. Is that the best life has to offer?
I am reminded of "The Work" by Bryon Katie. This amazing women, who was once ruled by her demons, had an epiphany one day that allowed her to see the story she was telling herself as a heavy weight on her true purpose and energy. She began to ask herself four mindful questions about her life circumstances and the beliefs she held about them.
1. Is it true?
2. Are you absolutely certain it is true?
3. How you react when you think this thought?
4. Who would you be without this thought?
She finished this series of questions with a chance to turn around the statements she was telling herself and flipping them on their head and see how that landed. For example, a statement like "He doesn't respect me." could be turned around to "I don't respect me." OR "I don't respect him." It is important to sit with these possibilities and see if a part of that rings turn to you.
I have brought many new insights to my personal story through the use of these questions and turn arounds. Much like an onion, I am peeling away the layers of mud and crud I have built around myself as so called "protection" against hurt and pain, which was stopping me from finding peace in my life. I know this form of inquiry is a big part of my journey into seeing why my triggers are being activated and how I can learn from them. I don't want to be simply on auto pilot acting and reacting to everything that I see. So I ask myself the questions again and again to see what's different, what's the same and how I can be with it all. Is there a new way to moving forward? Can I support myself and allow healing and compassion to enter?
How about you? Are you stuck in your story of limiting beliefs? Do you want to move forward to find more peace and well being in your life? I invite you to consider this as another resource on your journey to clarity. If you would like to learn more, please check out her book called, Loving What Is - Four questions that can change your life for more detail on a new way to be with your story and release a little (or a lot) of its hold on you. After all, growth only happens when we open to flow, not when we squeeze it closed.