Do you have a haunted house? You can be your own exorcist with The Work!

It’s funny how we have thoughts, and instantly believe them without question–at least that’s how my mind has worked.

You can spook yourself instantly, by believing.

Have you noticed?

It doesn’t take Halloween ghosties and goblins to scare you. Your own inner Haunted House, the one that holds your painful thoughts, can do the job on any day or night.

But if you don’t really want to haunt yourself with your thinking anymore, you can study anything you fear more closely.

One of my favorite things to study, hands down, is a stressful thought. By sitting with it for awhile, you can explore why, how, where you might have learned it or “bought” it or started carrying it around with you…..where you began to believe it to be true.

The best question for exploring a fearful thought in depth is to ask the following: What do I think this belief means? What does it mean about me? About the world? About someone else or a group of people? What does it mean about my future? Or my past?

In other words, what meaning am I placing on that thought.

The other day, I heard Byron Katie refer to the “meaning” we put on a thought, or a concept, or a story as being like a post-it note.

You grasp the story title, or the meaning, or the whole general feeling of that situation you dislike, and it’s as if you wrote it on a bright green post-it note, or a bright neon yellow post-it note, or maybe a pink one….

….and that’s your label of that situation.

No questioning it. Just assuming it to be true!

For example, you may have had the thought about a partner, just like I have: “he’s boring”. 

There he is watching TV in the den. (Or you can pick your moment that proves that person IS boring).

You’ve got a blue post-it note that has written on it “BORING PARTNER”. Your heart sinks. You wish there was someone around to have a stimulating intellectual conversation with. You want more entertainment in this moment here, right now. Maybe you even feel sorry for yourself because this is yet another boring partner in a string of them. Or you criticize yourself for always being critical.

The whole story is a bit sad, and blue (hence the blue post-it note).

Self-inquiry to the rescue! And let’s use these exploratory questions to dig a little deeper.

What do you think it means, your partner is over there being boring, watching TV? What does it mean about him, about you, about life?

If my partner is boringly watching TV, it means:

  • I must seek excitement elsewhere
  • I am not close to my partner
  • our interests should be the same, but they aren’t
  • he loves something I dislike (TV) so we are incompatible
  • he doesn’t care about using his time well
  • he doesn’t care about being creative
  • he’s addicted to the screen
You may have other different thoughts that come to mind. But the fun thing is, no matter what they are….you can question every one of them, one at a time.

 

Is this story true?

 

You can also ask what you think each one of these new additional concepts means and keep adding to your list of stressful or fearful beliefs.

 

What does it mean that we’re incompatible, for example? Oh no! It means we should break up! Which means we’re getting divorced! Which means I’ll be alone! Which means I need to work harder than I’m already working so I have enough money! Which means I need to find a new partner!

 

(Talk about Haunted Houses….jeez)!

 

See how the mind strings together an image of seeing someone I love watching TV, and it turns into needing to find a new partner?

 

That mind. Silly Rabbit.

 

Always running around in wild directions so speedy quick, dashing into the future or the past chaotically.

 

Who would I be without my story “Boring Partner” and everything I think it means?

 

I’d be laughing.

 

I’d be carrying on with my activity. I’d be noticing Man Enjoying Himself. I’d be free to be with myself and notice the splendor of the moment. Me moving with the flow, dancing with the world which in only a flash of a moment had a man-watching-TV in it.

 

Noticing I move back out of the room with TV, drawn to another place joyfully. Noticing a relaxed body, a part of the mind totally open to whatever happens next with wherever this is going.

 

What a ride! And a stress-free one!

 

I don’t know about you, but when I have a haunted thought….I’d rather question it than scream.

 

Or OK, you can go ahead and scream for the fun of it first, but then….take your belief through inquiry.

 

Best way to exorcise your fearful thoughts ever.

Much love,

Grace

3 Replies to “Do you have a haunted house? You can be your own exorcist with The Work!”

  1. I am dealing with a scary haunted house so am doing the work. Thanks for your reminders and examples. They help.

  2. Oh so very sweet to read your note here Susan. Thank you for sharing it and I love you’ve got inquiry. Much love working with the haunted house today, Grace

  3. Hi Grace,
    I’ve met you a few times and have the pleasure of being on your mailing list. It is 4:00 am and I awakened with stressful thoughts. Looked at my phone and there are your words bringing me back to reality, in all its beauty, from my haunted house. I just want you to know your words are often like an old friend patting me on the back in comfort. Thank you for being in my life, Grace.
    Susan

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