"Who Would You Be Without Your Story?" - Byron Katie's method for questioning painful beliefs.
Updated: Feb 3, 2021
Most of the stories we tell ourselves aren't really real...
Sun umbrella reflection on glass picnic table.
Have you ever noticed how your mind and heart have certain habits of thinking and feeling that create pain or sorrow within your mind and heart? I certainly have! I've also noticed that trying to fight them often just makes things even more uncomfortable.
Byron Katie is a well-know spiritual teacher whose central teaching is expressed in what she calls, "The Work." Embodied in four questions and a "turnaround," her technique for reducing stress, confusion, and and pain is simple: inquire into the truth (or falsehood) of the belief or event that is bothering you. Most of the time you discover that you mind created a painful story about something that someone said or did, and that this story is what's causing your suffering...not reality. "Who would you be without your story?" Katie asks. She does have three other steps, but most often I can just ask myself the question, "Who would I be without my story about __________?" and my mind laughs and lets go of it. You can learn more about this process here: https://thework.com/instruction-the-work-byron-katie/