Byron Katie Worksheet: They are too demanding. Is it true?

Stressful thought

My client, Company XYZ, is too demanding.

Is it true?

Yes

Can I absolutely know that it is true?

No

How to I react, what happens, when I believe this thought?

I feel like a victim. I feel trapped. I feel rage. I feel tension in my throat. It is like I want to scream but can’t. My back feels tense. I get depressed. I want to avoid their phone calls. I imagine walking out of my job – dramatically quitting. I moan to other people in the office and resent myself for doing it, for looking unprofessional. I huff and puff, and swear under my breath in the office after being on the phone with them or receiving another demanding email.

I get really stressed. I imagine all of the other work that needs to be done and won’t now been done as it needs to be dropped in order to work on this client. I imagine other clients getting angry. I am so fearful of other clients getting angry that I imagine myself staying late and having to come in during my holiday to catch up. I imagine that the work they require will take more time than it does. I postpone it.

Who would you be without the thought ‘Company XYZ are too demanding’?

I would be free to let them be as demanding as they want. I would no longer be a victim. I would be more objective in deciding what is a reasonable and unreasonable request. I would state my needs better – be clear about the meetings that it is not necessary for me to be in. I would communicate with them better about my own needs. I would be more present when they call. I would be more professional.

I have a fear that I would be a doormat. That I would just let them ask for whatever they want and do it.

Turn around 1

Company XYZ are not too demanding.

  1. They are as demanding as they are, which is reality. When I fight with reality I loose, but only 100% of the time. Someone can make any request they like of me. It is up to me whether I choose how to respond to the request and whether to fulfill it.
  2. They pay more than any other client and are our most profitable client and so can justifiably ask for things.
  3. They want good results and believe that they deserve them.

 Turn around 2

I am too demanding of myself

  1. I have very high expectations of myself. I put myself under pressure by expecting myself to meet their every demand.
  2. I don’t say no to Company XYZ. I tend to just jump to their every need.
  3. I don’t take into consideration what is doable in a non stressful way and time frame.

 Turn around 3

I am too demanding of Company XYZ

  1. I am too demanding of Company XYZ wanting them to be different to the way that they are. I am not just accepting them the way that they are.
  2. I am too demanding of them, demanding love and approval from them. The reason I work so hard is to fulfill my demand for love, approval and appreciation.

 

If you can see any other turn arounds or can find real life examples that you would like to share please feel free to comment below. Thank you.

To find out more about Byron Katie and The Work visit: www.thework.com.

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Byron Katie Worksheet: It’s all my fault. Is it true?

Stressful thought

It’s all my fault.

Context: Having had my chimney swept I lit a fire in my lounge for the 2nd time this year. This caused the fire alarm in the building next door to go off and the top flat to fill with smoke. Everyone had to evacuate and the fire brigade were called out.

Is that true?

Yes.

Can you absolutely know that it is true, that it’s all my fault?

No

How do you react, what happens, when you believe the thought?

I feel guilty. I feel terrified, I feel as if I am going to be told off. I feel as if I have been found out and am going to be punished. I see my neighbours all standing outside with their babies wrapped up and imagine them being really cross and angry with me. I imagine that they are really cold, scared and grumpy, and tell myself it is all my fault.

I feel tense. I want to go into denial. I want to pretend that it isn’t happening. I have the thought that it might be caused by the open fire but I don’t want to admit this to my neighbours. I let the fire brigade investigate first and then suggest that the smell is from a coal fire. I beat myself up for not having spoken up first.

Who would you be without the thought, ‘It’s all my fault’?

I would be much more free just to meet the experience without judgement. I would see that it is not all my fault. It was not my intension to set off their fire alarm and fill the flat with smoke. It just happened. I had had my chimney swept and had not done anything wrong. The cause of the problem was that the rendering had come away in the Chimney, something that happens in old buildings.

I would open to seeing things differently. My neighbours had taken a bottle of wine out with them and when I initially apologised one of them said that it was all quite exciting! It also meant that I spoke to one of my neighbours who I had never spoken to before. I decided to go round with a box of chocolates the next day and this provided another opportunity to talk again and to have a laugh about the whole situation. I would also be grateful that the source of the fire alarm going off was not a real fire and that no damage was done.

As a result I would be much more free, lighter and happier. I wouldn’t take the situation so personality and relax more, helping me to respond better. I would open to the opportunity to talk to my neighbours more.

Turn around 1.

It wasn’t my fault.

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

  1. I didn’t purposefully set the alarm off or fill their flat with smoke.
  2. The problem was that the rendering had come off the chimney

Turn around 2.

It was my thinking’s fault

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

  1. It was my thoughts that told me it was all my fault, blinding me to seeing the situation more objectively.
  2. My thinking holds the belief that I am wrong, bad, not enough and will be found out. This was projected out in this situation.

If you can see any other turn arounds or can find real life examples that you would like to share please feel free to comment below. Thank you.

To find out more about Byron Katie and The Work visit: www.thework.com.

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Byron Katie Worksheet: There is too much to do. Is it true?

Stressful thought

I have too much to do. There is too much to do

Is that true?

Yes.

Can you absolutely know that it is true, that there is too much to do?

Yes

How do you react, what happens, when you believe the thought?

I feel overwhelmed. I feel depressed. I feel stressed. I want to cry. I want to run away. I end each new task to my To Do list and go into paralysis. I don’t know where to start. I tell myself that I am not good enough [thought to bring to enquiry], that I can’t cope. When I start a task I am not present, I am preoccupied with the other tasks I know that I need to do afterwards. As a result I am not as effective as I could be if I just focused on the task.

I imagine clients getting very upset and angry because I haven’t replied to them quickly enough or got the reports out. I focus on all of the things that still need to be done. I don’t give myself credit for all of the things that I have done and completed. I comfort eat in order to stuff the feelings of feeling like a fraud. I decide that I need to stay late at work and resent it. I take on too much responsibility. I am in other people’s business – worrying about whether they are happy or not, whether they think I am good enough or not. I loose myself. I focus on other people and what they think. I find it difficult to take my full lunch break and not feel guilty.

Who would you be without the thought, ‘There is too much to do’?

I would be more present. I would just do the next thing that needs to be done. I would give it my full focus. I would let go of fear and pressure. I would feel much happier and free. I would be much more accepting. I would be open to trusting that whatever gets done was exactly what needed to be done, and that whatever didn’t get done wasn’t meant to be done. I would trust that it is all perfect.

I would be much more gentle and kind with myself. I would be more objective in seeing when I have too much to do and ask for help. I would be much more pragmatic in my job. I would just do what needs to be done, and not base my self worth and value on how much I get done. I would delegate. I would keep in my own business. I would try my best and be pleased with that. I would stop after each thing has been done and acknowledge myself and give myself the praise that I seek from others. I would stop trying to be perfect. I would take more breaks. I would smile more. I would talk to my colleagues more and be friendlier. I would be happier.

Turn around 1.

There isn’t too much to do

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

  1. Whatever needs to be done gets done. Each morning I come into work and feel overwhelmed with my To Do list. However at the end of everyday whether needed to be done got done and I generally leave with a sense of having done my best and trusting that whatever needed to be done got done.
  2. If I let go of my attachments to what needs to be done, whatever needs to be prioritised and done gets done.
  3. After time some of the things on my To Do list sort themselves out and get done without me needing to do anything.

Turn around 2.

There is too little to do

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

  1. There is too little on my To Do list that I really want to do, that makes my heart sing, involves being true to myself. When I am in this space and frame of mind work becomes play.
  2. There is too little on my To Do list that involves being true to myself, and taking time for enquiry and questioning my beliefs, to taking time to pray and meditate.
  3. There is too little time on my To Do list for play, for looking after myself, for cooking, for going for runs by the sea, for taking long baths, for doing nothing, for stroking my cat, for writing my blog.

Turn around 3.

My thinking has too much to do.

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

  1. In reality, I never have too much to do. When I am clear and open I just do whatever arises next. It is only ever my thinking that judges, decides and creates the story that there is too much to do.

If you can see any other turn arounds or can find real life examples that you would like to share please feel free to comment below. Thank you.

To find out more about Byron Katie and The Work visit: www.thework.com.

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Byron Katie Worksheet: I can’t do it. Is that true?

Stressful thought

I can’t do it. (In this specific case – write and perform a ceremony as part of my Interfaith training – feel free to substitute with whatever is causing you stress at the moment).

Is that true?

Yes.

Can you absolutely know that it is true, that you can’t do it?

[After a deep breath] No.

How do you react, what happens, when you believe the thought?

I feel suffocated. I feel stressed and pressured. I imagine myself performing the ceremony in front of my fellow students and it being a complete disaster. They don’t get it. They hate it. It is too short. I get lost for words and don’t know what to do. I am telling myself what a failure I am [I am a failure - thought to bring to enquiry]. I am really nervous, my voice is shaking, I am really embarrassed for being so nervous, so I pretend that I am not. I feel separate and judged by the audience. I feel alone, fearful and depressed. I dismiss the fact that I have already written the ceremony, as I worry that it isn’t good enough. I send the ceremony to a friend to review, inviting feedback, in a desperate attempt to get approval. I don’t really want feedback, I want external validation. I don’t allow myself to be pleased with what I have written.

I feel tense in my back, neck and the back of my skull. I am not present. I am too busy worrying about what others will think [whose business am I in when I worry about what other people think? Theirs!]. I feel small, like a child. I remember the guilt and shame of having a bad public speaking experience at school and at university. I forget all the times I have given great presentations at work and won significant amounts of business. I forget how I felt so nervous when I first chaired a 12 step meeting. Now I find this a comfortable experience and feel confident in this role, I dismiss this as easy and don’t give myself credit for how much I have grown.

Who would you be without the thought, ‘I can’t do it’?

Open to the possibility of doing it. Of doing it well. Or not doing it well. But doing it none the less.

I am much more gentle with myself. I see this as a learning experience, I no longer expect myself to do the ceremony perfectly (it is my first time after all!). I accept that I am an imperfect human being and relax into this. I open to the possibility that the mistakes may even make the ceremony even better – more human and open hearted, less staged and performed. I accept the fact that I am a student. I am learning. I open to life, to a higher power beyond my fears, which I hand over the ceremony to. I see myself before the ceremony praying, opening my heart to love.

I see myself letting go of thoughts about me and what others think. Instead I focus on opening my heart, on being of service, on praying for each of the participants that they may have the perfect experience for them. I stay in my business and accept that whatever they think is their business and says more about them and less about me. I focus on being a channel for whatever experience happens. I let go of judgement. I become more accepting. I become more free and peaceful. I actually enjoy the experience. I feel playful and excited.

Turn around 1.

I can do it.

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

1. I haven’t tried to write and perform a ceremony before so I can’t know with absolute certainty that I can’t do it.

2. I have done things in the past that I initially didn’t think I could do. Chair a 12 step meeting. Prepare and present a proposal to a large corporate company and win the contract. Cycle across Cuba and raise over £2,000. Hold an Artists Open House in my flat and make money. Get a well paid job in Brighton. Learn to knit. Learn to juggle. Learn to ride a bicycle. Speak in front of 1000 people at an AA convention. In each case I have had an amazing experience of achievement and connection with my true essence.

3. I have already written the ceremony. I didn’t think I could but I did.

4. I am getting to practice it with friends tomorrow and will have lots of space to make mistakes and change it.

 

Turn around 2.

My thinking can’t do it.

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

1. My unquestioned thoughts hold me back. I have a choice whether I believe the thoughts or bring them to enquiry.

2. My fearful thoughts will terrify me into paralysis resulting in me procrastinating in starting to write the ceremony. I can choose just to write anyway.

3. My fearful thinking makes this all about me. This isn’t about me. I can let go of worrying about what other’s think, stop seeking for love and approval outside of me and just relax into what is. Opening to receiving what wants to come through me. I just turn on my computer and start writing. I just show up to the ceremony and perform. I remain curious, letting go of judgement, letting go of my story.

 

If you can see any other turn arounds or can find real life examples that you would like to share please feel free to comment below. Thank you.

To find out more about Byron Katie and The Work visit: www.thework.com.

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Byron Katie Worksheet: I don’t want to go to work tomorrow

Stressful thought

I don’t want to go to work tomorrow.

Is that true?

Yes

Can you absolutely know that it is true, that you don’t want to go to work tomorrow?

No.

How do you react, what happens, when you believe the thought?

I feel depressed, I feel like a victim, I feel frustrated, I imagine all the work that I need to do – all the demands on me and see images of myself really overwhelmed, wanting to cry. I see myself working late in order to get everything done and resenting it – wishing I was having fun doing something else.

Who would you be without the thought, ‘I don’t want to go to work tomorrow’?

Free to make a choice when I wake up in the morning to decide whether I am going to go to work or not. I would be open to the reality that it is a choice that I make. I could choose not to go in – call in sick, or simply not go. I would be more open and present in my day if I did decide to go to work. I would no longer feel a victim as I would see it as a choice – an exchange of my time and labour in exchange for something I want – a simple transaction. I would be curious to see what happens in the day. I would be open to the times when I actually enjoy my work.

Turn around 1.

I do want to go to work tomorrow.

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

1. I get a great cup of coffee when I go in.

2. I will get to speak to some of my colleagues whose company I really enjoy.

3. I feel useful, valued.

4. I will get paid.

5. It is warm and dry.

6. I enjoy parts of my job and the feeling of having done a good job – responding to a situation well, getting something done.

7. It stops me from being bored.

8. It provides a great playground to reflect my thinking back at me and to give me ammunition for doing The Work.

Turn around 2.

My thinking doesn’t want to go to work tomorrow.

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

1. It is only my thinking that can cause me stress. If I don’t believe my stories, I would just be curious and open to the experience of working tomorrow.

2. In my thinking I am projecting into the future (and drawing on memories of the past) and creating all kinds of scenarios, some of which are highly unlikely to happen in reality.

3. My thinking tells me I would prefer to go and sit in a coffee shop all day.

Turnaround 3.

I don’t want to be unemployed tomorrow.

Concrete reasons / examples why this is as true or truer than the original thought:

1. I want to be paid for the work I do tomorrow.

2. I want to feel useful tomorrow.

3. I don’t want to look for another job tomorrow.

 

If you can see any other turn arounds or can find real life examples that you would like to share please feel free to comment below. Thank you.

To find out more about Byron Katie and The Work visit: www.thework.com.

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Inspired by The Prayer of St Francis

Life, make me a channel of your love.

 

Where I have chosen darkness I now choose light.

Where I have chosen illusion I now choose truth.

Where I have chosen separation I now choose joining.

Where I have chosen sadness I now choose joy.

 

Where I have chosen judgement I now choose acceptance.

Where I have chosen guilt I now choose innocence.

Where I have chosen fear I now choose love.

Where I have chosen lack I now choose abundance.

 

Where I have chosen obsession with the past and the future I now choose to be present.

Where I have chosen to be a victim I now choose empowerment.

Where I have chosen to deny myself I now choose authenticity.

where I have chosen self hatred I now choose self forgiveness.

 

O Divine friend, bridge to the truth of who I really am,

Grant that I may not so much

Seek for love and approval outside of myself as to acknowledge the love that I am .

Seek to control as to surrender to the love that is always here.

For it is in giving that we receive

In forgiving that we are forgiven,

and in letting go of fear that we are born to eternal love.

 

And so it is.

 

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Ian Patrick: My Journey with A Course In Miracles

After overdosing on Self Help books over the last few years I am becoming increasingly interested in people’s life stories. Biographies can provide a great insight into actually live spiritual teachings. Some of the most inspiring that I have read recently include:

Yesterday I also watched Ian Patrick’s My Journey with A Course In Miracles interview on Conscious TV. Ian set up and runs the Miracle Network in the UK, and the video provides an interesting account of how he moved from a job in the Oil and Gas industry to running the charity to support students of ACIM.

Thank you Ian for all of the ACIM workshops and events that you arrange, for the Miracle Cafe evenings every month, and of course for The Miracle Worker which I read avidly every other month.

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Death is but life’s next big adventure

“To the well-organised mind, death is but the next great adventure.”
Albus Dumbledore, in J.K.Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – 1991

 

 

Just imagine you really believed that death is but life’s next great adventure. Really imagine…

What would you do, that you have been putting off out of fear?

We are all going to die  anyway. Although we are in huge denial (in the Western world at least) it is one of life’s realities that unites us. How ever different our views, our lives, our choices, we are all the same – we are all going to die. In 100 years none of us are going to be here.

Somehow worrying seems to give us an illusion of control. Perhaps then I will be prepared for the worst… But what about enjoying the best in this present moment? Worry is like a rocking chair after all, it may help while away time, but it doesn’t ultimately get us anywhere.

Carl Jung, the Swiss Psychiatrist, claimed that all fear has it’s roots in the fear of death, and it is this fear that motivates much of our lives. So if I let go of this fear, perhaps all fear would ultimately fall away?

Would I still need your approval and wildly sing and dance in order to gain it? Would I still need you to love me and to behave in a certain way so that I will be ok? Perhaps this would give me the courage to be honest, to be authentic, to be present with myself, to say no when I mean no…

To really live….

Lesson 163 in A Course In Miracles states ‘There is no death. The Son of God is free’. The lesson goes on to say:

There is no death, and we renounce it now in every form, for their salvation and our own as well. God made not death. Whatever form it takes must therefore be illusion. This the stand we take today. And it is given us to look past death, and see the life beyond.

Ultimately none of us can really know with any certainty what happens when we die. But we can choose what to believe and how to live in this lifetime.

The opportunity we have is to choose between love or fear in each moment including the moment just before death.

In asking to see things differently, choosing love rather than fear, eternal life rather than physical death, we are giving ourselves permission to relax into life with greater joy, peace and happiness. It is the present that matters after all.  Focusing on the past and the future is just illusion. And with this attitude we really can open to curiosity and openness to life’s next great adventure whatever that will bring….

Image source: http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/Albus_Dumbledore

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Let Life Choose (and why I love the internet)….

The internet rocks.

While we can use anything to separate or to join, the intention of streaming Mooji’s live satsang from Brixton online is one of joining in the truth of who we really are. If you missed the live stream you can still view the recording:
 

 
The gift of Mooji for me is his laughter, a reminder not to take life so seriously.

“Let me remember to laugh at the tiny, mad idea. When we forgot to laugh, we called it sin; yet when we remember, it is but a silly mistake with no consequence or reality”

Kenneth Wapnick, Journey Through the Workbook of A Course in Miracles, V.7, p.67

 

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Teach only love for that is what you are

Teach Only Love For That is What You Are

Teach Only Love For That is What You Are

13 The message of the crucifixion is perfectly clear:

Teach only love, for that is what you are.

14 If you interpret the crucifixion in any other way, you are using it as a weapon for assault rather than as the call for peace for which it was intended.

ACIM Chapter 6, The Lessons of Love, 1. The Message of the Crucifixion.

 

In practicing handing my life over to love, and acknowledging that yes I would prefer to be happy than right, I find myself asking to be shown what love is. My ego’s version of love is often manipulation and bargaining (I will love you if you love me etc) thinly veiled. My prayer is:

Beloved, I don’t know what love is. But you do. Please show me what love is. Make me a channel for your love, your peace and your joy. Open my heart to the truth of who I am. 

And so it is.

 

P.S. You can look up any quote from A Course In Miracles on the Miracle Centre website.

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