The other day, I was talking with my client Laura (not her real name) about her big, audacious business idea. She had shared lots of background information on the project over email, and it was clear to me she was wildly informed about the idea and extremely competent to implement it. Then she said:
"I want to talk to some other people who are doing similar projects, but I am not prepared enough to talk to them yet."
As soon as she said this, I heard a big "SCREECH!" sound in my mind which is an indication that some belief busting is in order.
How do beliefs get in our way?
If you read magazines or watch news shows, you should have no problem knowing what to do to improve your life. Articles and stories abound about things like:
- How to lose 10 pounds in 2 days while eating chips and salsa
- 3 steps to turn your potato chip-loving kids into tofu enthusiasts
- 7 ways to find the mate of your dreams
- 8 ways to reduce your debt and have financial freedom
- And my personal favorite that has been covered by Cosmopolitan Magazine at least 5,000 times in the last 40 years: 5 ways to make your man deliriously happy in bed!
The fact is, we know what to do and how to do it. So why don’t we?
Because of unhealthy and unhelpful beliefs.
Using my earlier example, my client wants to get her business off the ground. She knows that in order to do it in the most efficient way possible, she needs to learn from others who have already walked that road. But her belief "I am not prepared enough to talk to other business owners" is getting in her way.
To help shake loose this unhelpful thought, I used the four questions from Byron Katie’s pioneering book called Loving What Is: Four questions that can change your life
As Katie says in her book:
"The Work is simply four questions that, when applied to a specific problem, enable you to see what is troubling you in an entirely different light. It’s not the problem that causes our suffering; it’s our thinking about the problem. Contrary to popular belief, trying to let go of a painful thought never works; instead, once we have done The Work the thought lets go of us. At that point, we can truly love what is, just as it is."
The Four Questions from "The Work."
- Is it true?
- Can you absolutely know that it is true?
- How do you react when you think that thought?
- Who would you be without that thought?
Turn it around.
Read the rest about how I used The Work with Laura here.